September 25, 2015
Iwi leaders call for New Zealand Wars commemoration
Iwi leaders have set December the 8th as the date to present a petition to parliament calling for a national day to commemorate the New Zealand Wars from the 1940s through to the invasion of Rua Kenana’s settlement at Maungapohatu in 1916.
Waikato Tainui executive chair Rahui Papa says the petition was organised by Otorohanga college students after a visit with kaumatua to battle fields in their rohe.
He says every part of Aotearoa was affected by the wars, with more than 2000 Maori men, women and children losing their lives defending their ancestral territory and 750 British and colonial troops killed following the orders of the governor of the day.
"The battles that we're talking about from the north to the south and the wider affair east in Tikitiki right across the country and especially throughout the Waikato have actually set the platform and the grievance mode of Maori from those times. It's not until historical treaty settlements are completed that the actual history has been put out there in the light of day" he says.
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