The Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand (FIANZ) held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 8 September 2018 at the Avondale Islamic Centre.
Established in 1979, FIANZ aims to guide New Zealand Muslims in the promotion of religious, social, educational, cultural, and economic activities in accordance with the principles of Islam. The AGM was attended by members of FIANZ, leaders from the Muslim community, and Hon Jenny Salesa, Minister for Ethnic Communities.
The President of FIANZ, Mustafa Farouk, discussed some of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in the New Zealand Muslim community. Farouk spoke of the need to have Muslims visible in key government sectors of society. The Muslim community provides New Zealand with a point of access to the global halal market.
In response to Dr Farouk’s speech the Hon Salesa shared her priority around increasing ethnic representation on State sector boards. She spoke of the recent approval of a cabinet paper that will collect ethnicity data on State sector boards. She hopes this achievement will aid her desire to see more ethnic people appointed to boards.
The Hon Salesa encouraged attendees to register with the Office of Ethnic Communities’ nominations service and participate in Kōrero Mātauranga, a public consultation from the Ministry of Education. She thanked the Muslim community for their contribution to New Zealand, and spoke of New Zealand’s diversity as a source of richness.