The Green Party extends its congratulations to Te Arikinui Kingi Tūheitia and the Kingitanga movement as they mark the King’s 10th koroneihana celebrations.
The week’s celebrations have included a ceremony in which the King received the keys to Hamilton city - the city’s highest civil honour, ngā kawe mate o te motu – a remembrance for those who have died over the last year, and a ceremony today to commemorate the return of the Rangiriri pā site.
“This is a historic year for the koroneihana celebrations, not just for Kingi Tūheitia but also for Tainui and the whole Kingitanga movement across the country,” Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.
“I send my best wishes to Kingi Tūheitia and his people and congratulate him on his 10th anniversary as King. I look to forward to many more years of his leadership for te iwi Māori.
“The leadership that Kingi Tūheitia has shown on behalf of his people has been exemplary. He has played leading roles in uniting faith leaders, progressing political issues such as water rights, and in strengthening the relationships between the Kingitanga and local and central government.
“The return of Rangiriri Pā, 150 years after it was the scene of the first battle in the Waikato land wars, is a huge achievement for Tainui and the Kingitanga.
“It is a momentous occasion for this country on our journey to settle historical injustices and honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
“The Government returning this whenua to Tainui paves the way for other iwi to commemorate the New Zealand land wars by reaffirming their status as tangata whenua in relation to historical sites of significance.
“I acknowledge the King’s wife Atawhai Paki, their daughter Ngawai Hono i Te Po Paki and Labour MP Nanaia Mahuta for revitalising the traditional tikanga of moko kauae. In doing so they highlight the pivotal role of mana wāhine leadership at the heart of the Kingitanga.
“The koroneihana events this week exemplify the enduring mana and influence of the Kingitanga movement and their significant contribution to our shared nationhood,” Ms Turei said.