Ōtaki ideal as bilingual town

The Maori Party is backing a move to declare Ōtaki a bilingual town.

Co-leader Marama Fox says it’s taking a pointer from some of the efforts to revitalise the Welsh language.

She says Ōtaki is a shining example because of the way the creation of Te Wananga o Raukawa created a large mass of Maori speakers in the town of 6000 people.

“Fifty percent of all Maori in Ōtaki speak fluent te reo Maori so the aspiration of becoming a bilingual town is something Ōtaki can actually realise and I think that is exciting for the future of Aotearoa, one town that could realise what it is like to be bilingual,” Ms Fox says.

As well as the wananga, which is the town’s largest employer, the town’s kura and high school also back the plan.

For a full radio interview see: www.waateanews.com