June 25, 2020
Stream claims life of reo champion Toni Waho
A great champion of te reo Māori has died.
Toni Waho was swept into the Tokiāhuru Stream 10km east of Ōhakune while out walking on Wednesday evening.
Mr Waho, who had affiliations to Ngāti Rangi, Te Ati Hau-Nui-ā-Pāpārangi, Ngāti Apa and Ngāti Kahungunu, was a former principal of Mana Tamariki kura and kōhanga reo in Palmerston North, as well as serving on a large number of boards and advisory positions.
He was appointed to the Kōhanga Reo National Trust in what was supposed to be a move towards a generational succession, but was removed in 2014 after he informed Education Minister Hekia Parata she has not been given accurate information about allegations of financial mismanagement in the trust.
After a long battle with the trust over his unlawful dismissal he was granted more than $500,000 in legal costs.
Māori Party president and fellow Ngāti Rangi negotiator Che Wilson says a rāhui had been put on the Tokiāhuru Stream.
He says Mr Waho was a champion of te reo Māori and an educationalist at all levels, leaving a great legacy.
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