July 06, 2020
Matatā hapū embraces Ōwairaka protesters
Pouroto Ngaropo’s intervention into the standoff over clearing exotic trees from Ōwairaka has taken a new turn with him hosting Honour the Maunga protesters at Iramoko Marae in Matatā.
The former Māori Television executive recently became a patron of the group, alongside Mt Albert resident Sir Harold Marshall, a retired architecture professor and expert on concert hall acoustic design.
A release from Mr Ngaropo and Honour the Maunga founder Anna Radford says there is now a formal partnership between the group and Ngāti Awa ki Te Awa o te Atua – Te Tāwera Hapu.
Honour the Maunga members are accepted as uriwhanaunga or extended family with the right to stay on the marae as whānau and eventually to be buried in its urupā should they so wish.
They say the partnership is based on the Māori world-view of the environment, which acknowledges the interconnectedness and interrelationships between all living and non-living things.
Mr Ngaropo maintains Ōwairaka is named after his hapū’s ancestress Wairaka, who lived there over 800 years ago.
Auckland’s mana whenua iwi, who now own the volcanic cone and administer it through the Tūpuna Maunga Authority, have different historical narratives about its naming.
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