Indigenous | Ireland

Whakaata Māori, TG4 Ireland sign ‘landmark’ content and strategy deal

TG4 Ireland Director General, Alan Esslemont, with Whakaata Māori Kaihautū Shane Taurima.

Whakaata Māori and TG4 Ireland have forged a “landmark” partnership to share strategies, develop content, and explore potential co-productions.

The organisations formalised the agreement at the 45th Celtic Media Festival in Cardiff, marking a new era of collaboration between Māori and Irish-speaking communities.

Shane Taurima, Kaihautū of Whakaata Māori, highlighted the significance of this partnership in their mission to promote language and culture.

“Our role is more pivotal than ever in contributing to the normalisation of our languages and cultures and ultimately their survival for future generations,” he said in a statement this morning.

Taurima expressed enthusiasm, saying he’s “excited about the opportunities that this alliance with TG4 presents - bringing creative minds together to find enduring solutions that will raise the status of the Māori and Irish languages and cultures, and create content that inspires our audiences.”

TG4 Ireland Director General, Alan Esslemont, with Whakaata Māori Kaihautū Shane Taurima.

TG4, a free-to-air channel in the Republic of Ireland with a weekly audience of 1.2 million, plays a vital role in preserving Irish language and culture, similar to Whakaata Māori’s mandate.

Alan Esslemont, Director General of TG4, underscored the mutual benefit of the deal.

“Within the history of global colonisation, the Irish people have been both the ‘dispossessed’ and the ‘dispossessors’ and I believe that we have much to discover from the experiences and worldview of the Māori people.”

“The parallels are evident to me between te reo Māori and an Ghaeilge, their communities of speakers, and their revitalisation efforts. In addition, TG4 and Irish media strategy can learn much from media policies concerning Māori broadcasting and other Aotearoa/ New Zealand media.”

The new Relationship Agreement establishes cooperation in content development, co-production, and exchanging resources, strategies, knowledge, and services.