Home' Waitomo News : 13 December 2016 Contents Te Kuiti
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KAWHIA kaumatua Bill Rewi-Wetini knows
the sea like the back of his hand.
Born and bred at Taharoa’s Te Koroha Marae,
the retired commercial fisherman made his liv-
ing from the sea.
His dad Tom owned the Kawhia-Te Maika
ferry and from a very young age he worked the
nets as a deckhand on his dad’s trawler supplying
the family’s Te Maika fish shop.
In his day, the 75-year-old piloted tug boats at
Taharoa, then owned a couple of fishing trawlers
gill netting rig sharks (lemonfish) along the coast
from Kawhia to Nukuhakere. He’s skippered
rescue missions and body recoveries.
He’s lived in Kawhia for 15 years and owns
the Kawhia Fish Shop with his daughter Jenny
The harbour views from his hilltop home are
stunning and every day he watches the privately-
owned and chartered fishing boats – “a good 80 a
day” – motor past on their way to another great
day on the water.
Life should be good, but Mr Rewi-Wetini is
He worries about what he believes is a big
increase in the number of fish being taken by
His biggest concern by far is the possible dam-
age being done to coastal snapper stocks by char-
ter boats operating out of Kawhia year round.
He says the boats go out most days with 10-12
clients on board, each with a 10-snapper limit.
“We all have grandkids who will go hungry
because there will be no more fish,” he says.
“I’ve fished most of my life, I see what comes
off the boats and worked it out – 13 tonnes of
snapper a day are being taken every day by char-
ter and recreational boats out of Kawhia.
“We can’t let it carry on. The fish are getting
hammered and one day there’ll be none left.
“ Things are getting really serious – they need
to chop the snapper quota by half, especially
when the fish are coming in close to shore to
He says he’s definitely not against fishing – it’s
what he’s loved all his life.
He’s just against overfishing and in his mind
the 10 per fisher snapper quota is overfishing.
He says he can understand why skippers are
against lowering the quota – if you’ve got 12
people on a boat at about $120 per person per
trip, you want them to have a good day and take
home lots of fish.
A COMPLAINT about a former
teacher’s conduct is being treated
“seriously” says Te Wharekura o Ma-
niapoto board of trustees chairman
Hone Te Rire.
Ministry of Education (MOE) head
of sector enablement and support Kat-
rina Casey confirmed last week that a
teacher had resigned after a complaint
was made to the school.
She said a police investigation is
now underway and the MOE is satis-
fied the kura has taken the appropriate
action in this case.
“The board of trustees of Te
Wharekura o Maniapoto can con-
firm that a complaint has been
made about a former staff member,”
says Mr Te Rire.
“We understand this is in the hands
of the police so it would not be appro-
priate to comment further at this stage
except to say that the board takes any
complaint seriously and seeks advice
and guidance from relevant authori-
ties where necessary to ensure that the
matter is processed with due diligence,
respect and professionalism.
“The board also liaises with the
Ministry of Education and Education
Council NZ as required.”
The Oparure Rd school caters for
96 primary and intermediate students
from years 1-13.
FORMER fishing trawler operator Bill Rewi-Wetini is concerned about the numbers of fish being taken out of the Kawhia Harbour and is calling
for the snapper quota to be cut by half
“Chop the quota by half”
to page 3
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
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