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Time to nation build and start the next chapter of Aotearoa - bring back the Ministry of Works

"Its time to build this nation anew. A Nation where we are self sustaining and fixed on the future. We must once again take up our leadership roles, roll up our sleeves and ensure that we do not go back to business as usual. That means being bold and brave but focused on a new plan for jobs, infrastructure,construction and much more." Matthew Tukaki, Chair of the National Maori Authority

The Chair of the National Maori Authority, Matthew Tukaki, has called on the Coalition Government to return the Ministry of Works to coordinate a national building program that will see jobs created, small business flourish but, more importantly, have complete control over procurement processed and requirements. Tukaki who is also a former head of the worlds oldest and one of the largest employment companies, Drake International, has said that our focus now must be on growth and building up the nation:

“Several decades ago we tried this model of outsourcing nearly everything the Government did – we outsourced control of infrastructure and construction by getting rid of the Ministry of Works and handing everything to companies like Fletchers and Mainzeal – look where that got us. We outsourced research and science mostly to third party institutes who continuously struggler for money when the Government scrapped the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR) and we depleted our manufacturing base by essentially outsourcing everything overseas – if its one thing COVID 19 has laid bare is the gaps in a policy where New Zealand has become reliant on others – those days must end.” Tukaki said

“The bringing back of the Ministry Works means we can ensure that we build up a new army of traders, of highly value jobs and career pathways from builders and sparkies, to planners and architects – we can ensure that more money goes to small and medium sized business cutting out what have become middle men making huge margins. Whereby the budgets and projects are once again administered by us and monitored by us. More importantly we have already moved part way there with the success of the Provincial Growth Fund – its time to embed that work and get on the path of nation building – building the nation we want for our own future and that can also include climate change preparation projects and the cleaning up of our national water infrastructure -do this right and we will be in the business of creating tens of thousands of new jobs.” Tukaki said

“We cannot wait for business and industry to dictate the terms of apprenticeships – we must get over the short term response and plan for the medium to long term and in doing so that means the introduction of new trades in the digital arena – software developers and coders, cyber security workers and much more – this is the change we have to write a new story fit for these times and our common future.” Tukaki said

Tukaki has also previously called for the return of the DSIR and more support for our scientific and research community – also the inclusion of the Te Ao Maori and Matauranga Maori worlds to build a unique and tested form of scientific endeavour. Tukaki will be sending a plan for the return of both to the Coalition this week.

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