December 13, 2022
Piripi hands over helm at Te Rarawa
Haami Piripi has stepped down after nearly 16 years as the chair of the Far North’s Te Runanga o Te Rarawa.
But the 65-year-old says was farewelled at his home marae, Roma, in Ahipara on Saturday, with more than 200 people attending – including Crown Relations Minister Kelvin Davis, New Zealand First’s Shane Jones, and a who’s-who of Te Rarawa leaders including newly elected chair Katie Murray, a leader in whanau-focused services for three decades.
Filmaker and close friend Tainui Stephens joked about how many attendees now had white hair – and some had none.
Mr Piripi was gifted with two specially made taiaha as parting gifts, but indicated he would still be working for the iwi, including developing responses to proposed welfare legislation and water management.
He says one of his greatest regrets is how many kaumatua and kuia did not live to see the treaty settlement with the Crown – and although it was a pittance compared to Te Rarawa’s losses, it will still provide a platform for the iwi to develop and grow.