Kapi-Mana News : September 13th 2011
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Ask our friendly staff for further details Specialists in Custom Exhaust Rebuilding & All Exhaust Repairs SERVICES WE OFFER: • WoF • Tyres • Lubes • Brakes • Full Mechanical Repairs (Guaranteed to beat any written quote) SPRING SPECIAL $30.00* WoF LETTERS Ekers' Week Gatecrashers: Welsh rugby fans thankful to receive ''cheap seats'' at Te Rauparaha Arena for the team's offical Porirua welcome. Too competitive Editor, Your article on Small Stories and the Porirua Alternative School set up in the 1980s prompted me to respond by congratulating Lloyd Martin and his wife for their dedication and tenacity in providing educational services and guidance to our local youth over the past 20-plus years. They have given their all to take the disaffected, cast-out students from our schools and helped to turn their lives around by fostering self-belief, as well as trust in their mentors and their own abilities to achieve educationally. Kei te mihi whanui atu ki a raoa! Unfortunately, most of our schools are locked into a system whereby students are placed in single-aged cohorts from their infant years to the end of their secondary schooling. In other words, they are forced into a competitive environment from age five to 15. As a result we get a few winners and many losers. It s the latter who end up with the Lloyd Martins of society if they are lucky. Many, however, turn to crime as a form of retribution against a society that created their anti-social status. I believe that schools should organise all their students into multi-aged groupings to help them to appreciate and enjoy the concept of an extended family where cooperation and collaboration replaces the competitive, dog-eat-dog ethic. Teachers would then have to concentrate on thorough planning to ensure quality learning takes place rather than on lecturing from the front of the classroom. In due course there will be no need for alternative schooling options. DICK GRACE, Plimmerton. Restoration? Editor, The two-page [advertising] feature (KMN, August 30) extolling the work done and projected to further the clean-up of Porirua Harbour over the next 10 years represents some progress, but only tinkers with the problem. It s one thing to restrict the inflow of sediment and pollutants, but what is to be done to remove the existing mud flats exposed at low water that have been growing larger, untouched for countless years? There s nothing in the current publicity to indicate that removal of the mud flats, now more than 20 per cent of the harbour, is one of the aims in the featured snapshot of the future . All else will be wasted effort if dredging of the mud flats is not part of the plan put out for consultation till the end of September. Dredging advocate Jenny Brash, our former mayor, has been right all along. Harbour restoration is the published headline, but that s not part of the programme. The rest is a patch-up job dealing with immediate problems within the surrounding catchment. We need something better than that. JOHN WATSON, Titahi Bay. Welsh let down Editor, On Sunday, September 4, the official welcome and capping ceremony for the Welsh rugby team was moved from Takapuwahia Marae to Te Rauparaha Arena (due to a funeral). I can t help feeling why didn t Porirua City Council plan for it to be there in the first place? The event was supposed to be invitation only. But a huge thanks goes to the Arena staff, who allowed our small group of Welsh fans in to watch from the cheap seats . We owe chocolate -- it s on its way! I can understand that the official dinner with dignitaries, etc., should be invitation only, but why did PCC not allow the welcoming ceremony to be open to the public and the large contingent of Welsh fans (some of whom travelled half way round the world)? The RWC NZ is trying to show off the Stadium of 4 Million , yet Porirua put on a slightly pitiful show and I can t help but feel that after seeing what Wellington City did for the South Africans, that the Welsh were slightly ripped off. MARGARET SMITH, Porirua East. Porirua Mayor Nick Leggett responds: It s a shame that Margaret was disappointed in the welcome ceremony for the Welsh rugby team. I thought it went very well, especially given there was a last minute venue change due to a tangi at the Takapuwahia Marae. Actually, the feedback from our guests -- Porirua locals, Welsh players and managers as well as RWC 2011 -- was uniformly and overwhelmingly positive. I had comments from people who attended saying how moving the event was and that it made them very proud to be from Porirua. As far as Margaret s suggestion that the event should have been open to all-comers, that simply wasn t possible once the organisers selected the marae as the original venue and the last- minute change didn t allow us time to throw open the doors. Certainly, if the Arena had been the venue to start with, I am sure we would have been able to accommodate a greater number. While I always welcome constructive feedback such as this from Margaret, in this instance I think Ngati Toa Rangatira, along with other organisers and officials deserve credit for a job well done.
September 6th 2011
September 20th 2011