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Te Wānanga o Aotearoa (TWOA) is a Māori-based tertiary education institution. It has given thousands of people a second chance at education and dramatically boosted Māori participation at the tertiary level.
Between 1999 and 2003, TWOA's student roll rocketed from 1,000 to more than 63,000, making it New Zealand's largest tertiary institution. In 2004, it received $156 million in government funding. However, this success story was not without controversy.
In 2004 and 2005, a Member of Parliament and the media raised concerns about TWOA's spending of public money. The Minister of Education asked the Office of the Auditor-General (OAG) to investigate.