While the official welcome for the Kīngitanga and Waikato Tainui wrapped up at Rātana Pā, Scotty Morrison interviewed the king's spokesperson, Rāhui Papa.

Scotty: Rāhui, tell us about the significance of the Kīngitanga's connection with the hāhi Rātana?

Rāhui: It’s nearly been 100 years that the Kīngitanga has been allied with Rātana since Piupiu Te Wherowhero and Tupu Taingakawa and Haunui Tawhiao and from there the relationship was established. In the year 1934 Koroki went inside Rātana’s temple to establish connections. What T. W. Rātana said to him was, “You will be the king and I will be the prophet.” From then, right through till now that connection hasn’t changed.

Scotty: How relevant is the concept of hāhi Māori like the Ringatū and Rātana faith?

Rāhui: Most people think only in business now, only looking at a monetary value only. But from a Māori perspective, we should worry about the spiritual side just as much as the physical. So Ringatu, Paimarire and Ratana started in this country. Its principles weren’t brought in from overseas. They came from our ancestors, spoken word and prophetical sayings that validate this.

Scotty: Outside of all things Rātana, we understand that former Immigration Minister Tuariki Delamere has replaced Tukoroirangi Morgan as the political advisor to King Tuheitia. What do you make of the move given your history with the Māori Party?

Rahui: It’s fine, purely because it’s King Tuheitia’s job to capture the thoughts of the masses across the country. He’s gone to his elders from across the country as well as to the elders within Tainui. And Tuariki will stay as an advisor to King Tuheitia for things regarding politics. He has said things and discussed at length the wishes of the king at the poukai at Kōkōhīnau Marae. Along with what’s happened from last year. Te iwi Māori have spoken and the Kīngitanga will support that.

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