May 20, 2022
Billboard hikoi hypes Aotearoa petition
Look on the road for Hohepa Thompson, who’s touring the North Island towing a billboard promoting a call for the country’s name to officially be Aotearoa.
Thompson, aka Hori, says the Māori Party-backed petition, which also calls for the restoration of te reo Māori names for all towns and cities, now has close to 80,000 signatures.
He’s also taking time to share lessons on history and mātauranga Maori.
He says the hikoi was triggered by attacks by Don Brash-led lobby group Hobson’s Pledge on the idea of mātauranga Māori.
“They have no understanding and they have no knowledge of mātauranga or our knowledge. They are only seeing this from a Pākehā lens. What we hope to achieve is to give them an insight into why Māori think the way we do and why our history is just as important as Pākehā history,” Thompson says.
He’ll be back at Parliament next week for the handover of the petition.