Maori language prevails in bill

  • 26/02/2016

For the first time in history a Maori language version of a statute will prevail over the English one.

The Maori Language Bill is to be enacted in both languages, with the Maori text prevailing, says Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell.

The bill has been reported back by a select committee and is due for its second reading.

"It is ground-breaking and I'm incredibly humbled that I am the minister taking this dual language bill through its final stages in parliament," Mr Flavell said today.

"Maori has been an official language since 1987 but there are still many areas of our society where it is rarely seen or heard."

Mr Flavell says drafting the bill in te reo Maori and English needed a team of language and legal experts.

It sets out a new way for the government and Maori to work together to revitalise te reo Maori.