“The scale of the systematic killing at Ngātapa represents one of the worst abuses of law and human rights in New Zealand’s colonial history. 43 per cent of the adult male population of Tūranga, were killed in armed conflict with the Crown. This is an extraordinary level of loss for any community anywhere. It is believed to be the highest casualty rate suffered by Māori in any region in New Zealand during the land wars.” – An excerpt from the Rongowhakaata Treaty Claim.
On January 6th 2021 marked 152 years since the Siege of Ngātapa ended. This event has been described as ‘The fall of Tūranga’, as many of our tipuna fled the district, were killed or captured and sold into slavery. The meteor flag of mighty England reigned over Tūranga from that point forward which would change our lives forever.
We received overwhelming interest from our whānau and the wider community to participate in this historic hikoi. Emotions ran high as we reached the peak of the hill where the siege occurred. This was a signifiant day for Rongowhakaata and we thank all of you who participated. Our goal is to create educational opportunities for everyone to learn our distinct narratives. Feeding identity through narrative is key so that future generations will better understand who they are.