Widow's claims of late husband's paedophilia labelled 'brave'

by Anneke Smith / 09 July, 2018

The widow of Te Awanuiārangi Black says her husband was a serial abuser. Photo / Getty Images

A woman who has accused her late husband of paedophilia has been described as incredibly brave.

The widow of Te Awanuiārangi Black, a prominent iwi leader who died in 2016, has posted a video to social media saying he was a serial abuser of children.

Awanui Black, who died two years ago, was a Bay of Plenty regional councillor and member of the Māori Language Commission.

In the video Anihera Black, at times distressed, said he was a predator who groomed and abused children over many years.

She said she was speaking on behalf of herself and family and that she was speaking out now because silence about such matters was violence to the soul.

"I am so extremely sorry and devastated.

"I'll do what I can to help navigate through your healing process, but here's where you take your power back."

Ms Black said she and her family gave any potential victims permission to speak "your truth".

Sex abuse rampant in New Zealand

Tauranga sexual assault counsellor Denise McEnteer said Mrs Black's video would encourage others to come forward.

"The more that people talk about it then the better off we're all becoming because then as a community we can have a different look at this and act appropriately."

Ms McEnteer, who has worked with sexual assault victims in Tauranga for 20 years, said sexual abuse was rampant in New Zealand.

"It's a huge issue. We're finding all our services are absolutely jam-packed. Every practitioner I know that specialises in this field has a waiting list. It's huge. We cannot keep up with the demand of this issue."

In her video, Mrs Black said her husband Awanui Black was himself abused as a child and that had created the same behaviour in him.

The family had decided not to unveil Mr Black's headstone as it would perpetuate the illusion of who he was, she said.

Ms McEnteer said it was not uncommon for the abused to become abusers themselves.

"What we do know is some boys who are sexually abused as children will re-enact that abuse. The girls tend to turn it inwards which causes depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. We know that boys and men who are assaulted also suffer these conditions."

She said free and open access to pornography was a contributing factor to sexual abuse.

East Coast Labour MP Kiri Allen, who was born and raised in Tauranga, said there would be an immeasurable array of emotions from people in the area, and people throughout New Zealand.

"Anger and fear, to everything that goes through when these types of issues rear their heads."

She said now healing would need to be brought to the community, from the impacts of what Ms Black had shared.

This article was originally published by RNZ.

Latest

Mapping the second brain: The latest science on the effect of your gut bacteria
104884 2019-04-24 00:00:00Z Health

Mapping the second brain: The latest science on th…

by Donna Chisholm

Most of us have heard the five-plus-a-day message for fruit and vegetables. But new research into gut health suggests that advice may need tweaking.

Read more
How a mother and daughter changed their diet to manage irritable bowel syndrome
104896 2019-04-24 00:00:00Z Nutrition

How a mother and daughter changed their diet to ma…

by Donna Chisholm

A mother and daughter with irritable bowel syndrome say that diet was the missing ingredient in controlling the condition.

Read more
Lack of humility is Simon Bridges' fatal flaw
104881 2019-04-23 00:00:00Z Politics

Lack of humility is Simon Bridges' fatal flaw

by Graham Adams

After low polling and even louder caucus rumblings, you’d expect to see at least a flicker of fear in the eyes of someone threatened with an axe.

Read more
Sri Lankan government's social media ban wrong move after terror attacks
104949 2019-04-23 00:00:00Z World

Sri Lankan government's social media ban wrong mov…

by Meera Selva

Sri Lanka has temporarily banned social media and messaging apps in the wake of the coordinated Easter Sunday attacks on churches and hotels.

Read more
Why do some dramas require the female protagonists to be total idiots?
104764 2019-04-23 00:00:00Z Television

Why do some dramas require the female protagonists…

by Diana Wichtel

Diana Wichtel reviews SoHo 2’s Cheat and Lightbox’s BBC thriller Trust Me.

Read more
Why the typical NZ household is undergoing a revolution
104877 2019-04-23 00:00:00Z Property

Why the typical NZ household is undergoing a revol…

by Shamubeel Eaqub

We’re living in different places, having fewer kids, living longer and getting older, perhaps lonelier, and the idea of a family has become more fluid

Read more
Detour off E Street: Steven Van Zandt’s solo excursion to NZ
104828 2019-04-22 00:00:00Z Profiles

Detour off E Street: Steven Van Zandt’s solo excur…

by Russell Baillie

The Springsteen sideman and ‘Sopranos’ star is reviving his own music career.

Read more
Rethinking the Kiwi dream: How New Zealanders live now
104848 2019-04-22 00:00:00Z Property

Rethinking the Kiwi dream: How New Zealanders live…

by Sharon Stephenson

Would you live with your ex? New Zealanders increasingly live alone or find creative ways to house themselves.

Read more