Parihaka has waited a long time for this day

On Friday, at the historic Parihaka reconciliation ceremony, the Crown finally apologised to the people of Parihaka for the actions which had burdened them “with an intergenerational legacy of grievance and deprivation, and which have burdened the Crown with a legacy of shame.”

Here is the full apology, which was delivered by the Attorney-General Chris Finlayson.

Te maunga tupuna, Taranaki
Tū mai, tū mai rā
Ngā uri whakaheke
Koutou ngā kaikawe o ngā tohutohu
a Tohu Kākahi, a Te Whiti o Rongomai
Karanga mai, mihi mai, whakatau mai.
He rā tino nui tēnei mo te Karauna
He rā tino nui tēnei mo te Motu
Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tātou katoa.


We are at Parihaka today to participate in this historic ceremony which marks the reconciliation between Parihaka and the Crown.

This is a day when we need to look back at the history of the Crown’s actions at Parihaka and acknowledge the suffering those actions have caused for generations of people at Parihaka.

This is an important part of reconciliation. But it is also a day when we look forward to a future where the vision of Parihaka is finally achieved.

For the vision of Tohu Kākahi and Te Whiti o Rongomai was not one of protest and resistance. Theirs was a vision of self-determination, cooperation and peace.

In the past the Crown felt threatened by that vision and sought to undermine it. Today the Crown comes to Parihaka to make a contribution to the fulfilment of that vision.

Parihaka has waited a long time for this day.

When I was here a year ago to sign the compact of trust I spoke about the sense of responsibility I feel as Attorney-General for this reconciliation.

The colonial government failed to uphold the rule of law at Parihaka and I am grateful for the opportunity, as the current Attorney-General, to be able to play a part in helping right that past wrong. Continue reading

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