Pia Pohatu and Kate Walker

Waiapu Koka Huhua – challenges and shared learnings in co-writing the Waiapu Catchment Plan

Traditionally, Waiapu Koka Huhua is a reference to the female leadership in the Waiapu valley, and is reflected in the majority of the 27 hapū within the Waiapu being named after rangatira wahine.

More recently we use this whakatauki to guide our kaitieki efforts by reminding us of the abundance within the Waiapu and her tributaries to sustain our hapū.

We share the premise for co-governance in the Waiapu River catchment between Ngāti Porou and Gisborne District Council and present some key challenges and learnings we have experienced so far in co-writing the Waiapu Catchment Plan. These are focused on:

  • Enabling hapū leadership in freshwater management (engagement, representation and developing hapu capacity)
  • Determining Te Mana o Te Wai
  • Our approach to setting FMU’s and translating the NPS-FM
  • Preserving our “position/s” through the RM Reform.