Neville Taiaroa, an apprentice motor mechanic, has been presented with the Maori Affairs Department Award for the top Maori apprentice in the Wanganui district.
He was given the award during the Commonwealth Technical Training Week.
Neville, who comes from Ratana Pa, began his apprenticeship in 1957. In 1958 he scored 84 percent, in his first qualifying examination, and the next year 66 per cent. in his second qualifying examination. Last year, he passed the written section for his Trade Certificate.
The Maori Affairs Department Award was inaugurated this year. It will be presented every year to the top Maori apprentice in the district.
The third annual competition for the best kept Maori home in the Mangonui County has recently been held and prizes awarded. Instead of cash prizes, as were awarded in previous years, the judges agreed that something more permanent should be given so that the winners could prove their success and for future display. Two china cabinets, one for first place valued at £25, and the other for second place, valued at £15, were given by Mr R. D. West, a Kaitaia businessman, who also gave ten consolation prizes of wire fruit baskets valued at approximately £1.
The prize winners were:
First Prize: Mrs Paul Dudley, Pamapuria.
Second Prize: Mrs B. Henare, Whangape.
⋆ ⋆ ⋆
Maori professional heavyweight wrestler Keith Meretana, of Wairoa, at present campaigning in the United States, has vacated his New Zealand title.
Meretana says he has forfeited the title because he is committed to campaigns in New York and Washington, and will be unable to make any defences this season. “There are two or three New Zealand boys who, I'm sure, would like a crack at the title, so I'm relinquishing it,” he wrote.