At former PM Mike Moore's funeral, Jacinda Ardern pays tribute to 'working-class hero'

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern paid tribute to former PM Mike Moore during his funeral today, recalling their last conversation days before he died. 

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Stories and jokes were shared by those close to him, including current Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. Source: 1 NEWS

Mr Moore died on February 2 at the age of 71 at his home in Auckland. 

Funeral service of former Prime Minister, the Right Honourable Mike Moore. Source: Supplied

"His voice and body may have been weak, but his questions were not," Ms Ardern said.

Jacinda Ardern sitting next to Yvonne Moore. Source: Supplied

"I’d not long sat down when he asked, 'What big things are you doing next?' He clearly wasn’t interested in small talk. He was never one to waste a moment, not when there was so much to do."

Ms Ardern said Mr Moore asked about her family, how she and the Labour team were and how Labour's polling was. 

"If someone’s last conversations in the moments they have left on this Earth is an indication of who someone is, then Mike’s were extraordinary to me.

"As I went to leave, I asked Mike if there was anything I could do for him - he didn’t hesitate.

"He asked if I look out for the people who had looked out for him, the people who some 30 years ago had worked for him, alongside him, in tough times and good times, and who he felt such loyalty and commitment to.

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Tributes have flowed from his friends and former colleagues. Source: 1 NEWS

"It was a simple mark of the selfless love he had for people. Now, we say farewell to this man of the people, and we do so knowing Mike takes his place in the rare circle of conviction politician."

During the service, Ms Ardern referred to Mr Moore as a "statesman, progressive, constant learner, ideas man, working-class hero, the quintessential battler, and - as we like to call it in Labour - a true believer".

"He felt so deeply and believed so deeply in fairness, social justice and equal opportunity."

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Ms Ardern spoke of her last conversation with Mr Moore, days before he died, at his funeral today. Source: 1 NEWS

"I saw in Mike someone who knew that politics can be a tough and unforgiving game. He had his share of tough times, and sometimes it was tough for the party he served and loved.

"I saw a man that we, Labour, salute, acknowledge and thank."

Mr Moore was Prime Minister from September 4 to November 2, 1990.