late last night - or rather, early this morning, i watched a live stream from auckland of protests against the TPPA signing (the TPPA is the pacific equivalent of the european TTIP). the recorded footage is here.
the nz government was hosting a behind-closed-doors ceremonial signing of the TPPA in auckland with the 12 other pacific nations involved. there were protests all over the country, including about 15,000 people in auckland where the march was led by maori performing the haka. these were local iwi (tribes) who had been asked by the government to perform a powhiri (maori welcome) for the signing of the TPPA (a powhiri is standard protocol for significant events in nz) - but the iwi refused and chose instead to lead the march. there was a big maori presence & a forest of tino rangitiratanga flags (red & black flag of maori sovereignty - & much nicer than the logo-like option the government is currently trying to force through as our new flag) & an overwhelming atmosphere of strong, unified opposition to the TPPA and the way the government has handled it.
february 6th is waitangi day in aotearoa/new zealand - the anniversary of the signing of the treaty of waitingi in 1840 between maori tribes (not all of them) and representatives of the british crown. it's a public holiday in nz, some see it as a celebration & others as a day of mourning / contemplation about colonisation. there is always a major ceremony at te tii marae in waitangi, which the prime minister traditionally attends. there is often some element of protest or controversy around it & this year it has been pretty much about the TPPA. as a result, our dickhead prime minister john key, who is busy signing away aoteaora/new zealand to coroporate colonisation, has decided not to go. maori objection to the TPPA is mainly over the lack of consultation, but also concerns that the TPPA will breach the treaty of waitangi (which it absolutely will).
i felt proud to see the huge public opposition to the TPPA, with people from all walks of life & everyone that reporter john campbell spoke to was very well-informed. the signing of the TPPA is purely ceremonial, it still has to go through the legal processes in each of the 12 nations, so there is still hope that the whole thing will collapse.