The first official commemoration of the NZ Wars has been hailed a great success.

The event called 'Te Pūtake o te Riri' was held in Northland where the first skirmishes between Māori and Pākehā took place.

Organisers say the purpose of the commemorations is to educate the nation.

According to Aperehama Edwards, the māngai of Te Pūtake o te Riri, this event has been a long time coming.

“Kaupapa tēnei kua roa kē e wawatahia ana kia āta huihui mai ai te tini tangata, hei hakaoho i Aotearoa ki tōna anō hītoria.”

The flag of Māori Independence was raised at dawn to commemorate the sacking of Russell.

It's the culmination of the ‘Homai He Rā’ campaign that began with a petition by students at Ōtorohanga College.

Zak Henry was one of those students and says it’s amazing the impact the petition has had.

“When we first started the petition we just thought it was a little kaupapa. We're from Ōtorohanga College and to see the number of people that have come is amazing.”

But it's just the beginning for Te Pūtake o te Riri.

Taranaki accepted the mauri, in the form of a sewing needle, to host the next event and according to Taranaki māngai, Ruakere Hond, Waitara and Taranaki are the perfect people to host the next event.

“Ko Waitara anō te wāhi e tika ana pea kia aronuitia atu e Taranaki. Engari, arā anō ngā kōrero e mea ana ehara i te mea mō te riri te aronga engari anō ko tō tātou Rangatiratanga, tō tātou mana.”

The next event will be held on 28 October 2019 in Waitara.

LIKE