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Race Relations Commissioner encourages consultation

Race Relations Commissioner and former Gisborne mayor Meng Foon says Thursday's decision by Gisborne District Council to erect Endeavour models represents a lost opportunity for community consultation.

“Letting people know what is happening was always my strength when I was mayor,” he said.

“Our history has many strings to its bow and all history — warts and all — has merit in being told and shared.”

The Rapanui and Te Maro sculptures, the Dog and Wal statue and Puhi Kai Iti were all consulted on, he said.

“It doesn't mean that the projects are not going to be going ahead or be installed.

“Consultation is a process to get views, and most times views are valid.

“A lot of goodwill and strong relationships were built during Tuia 250.” said Mr Foon.

“I encourage Gisborne District Council to continue to show goodwill and continue to consult with the community.”

• See also today's editorial here.

  1. Mark Peters says:

    “Letting people know what is happening was always my strength when I was mayor.”
    Mostly a strength, As beautifully conceived and carved as the Kelvin Park pou are, even the Arts in Public Places committee Meng was chairman of were as unaware as the wider community of their imminent installation.

    1. winston moreton says:

      Mark Peters – were you on the committee? Are you stating a fact or expressing the opinion Chairman Meng knew about the non-consented work but the committee didn’t?