In just under three months time, Aotearoa will again decide who we want to govern this beautiful country. Finding accurate, relevant, and honest information around politics is hard at the best of the times, but a new social media platform has been launched to help young Māori navigate the murky waters of NZ politics.
Launched by Eru Kapa-Kingi, "Whakaaro Fridays" is a weekly online resource that offers information from a distinctly Māori perspective, in an effort to encourage more Māori to engage in politics and vote in the upcoming elections.
Kapa-Kingi states that "Whakaaro Fridays is a platform to normalise political discussion for all young Māori as well as educate us on why and how voting can be influential, using common language."
When asked about his motivation for starting the page, Kapa-Kingi says that many young Māori are not voting, and he hopes that his youthful approach and background in public law can help change that.
"Well really the idea came from knowing the election is coming up and the fact that most young Māori typically don’t vote. I do vote, and I wondered what made me different. I think it’s the fact I had the opportunity to learn about public law etc when at university so I’ve come to learn how important it is to vote, and also the fact I’ve been brought up in an environment where talking politics is normal."
According to Te Ao, "Over 230,000 youth voted in the last election, and of that 230,000 only 45,503 were Māori."
The topics that Whakaaro Fridays aims to tackle will be "political stuff affecting Māori that has happened in the week prior," which includes things such us enrolling to vote; general roll vs Māori roll; how MMP works; Parliament vs Government; the Treaty etc.
"These are things which I think will help us make sense of why we should participate in the institution that is voting. But I also hope to deliver these messages in a way that isn’t going to bore or patronise."
Whakaaro Fridays is still in the early stages of building an audience, so make sure to head on over to their Facebook and Instagram pages for a unique perspective on the political spectrum in Aotearoa. Catch the second episode up top!