LISTEN: There is controversy stirring the country after the Human Rights Commission (HRC) donated $200 to the Mongrel Mob as koha - a customary Māori gift.
The donation was made when Human Rights Commissioner Paul Hunt visited the Waikato gang pad in May, according to figures obtained under the Official Information Act.
Māori Development Minister Willie Jackson has also met with the Mongrel Mob, and told Magic Talk's Danny Watson there is a misunderstanding by non-Māori about koha protocols.
"People let their hatred and resentment for gangs - and I can understand that - get in the way of our protocols, our Tikanga," he said.
Mr Jackson says in Māori culture, Tikanga must be carried at all times.
"You go somewhere and you're a guest, our protocol is to give a koha - an acknowledgement of the manākitanga," he told Magic Talk.
"Similar to a lot of pakeha people who go to other people's places and take wine and take kai - it is a very important part of Māori practices."
Listen to the full interview with Willie Jackson above.