‘Our tupuna were not just waiting to be found’
It concerns me that the narrative around Waitangi Day assumes that Te Tiriti was our tupuna’s first and only effort to resist colonisation. It wasn’t. Like many indigenous peoples, we had traversed the world long before others arrived at our shores. We were voyagers, international traders and the last indigenous nation to be colonised by the British Empire.
Our tupuna were not just waiting to be found. They foresaw the taniwha that was coming:
He taniwha kei te haere mai, ona niho he hiriwa he kōura ko tona kai he whenua. Kaua e mataku i te hiriwa me te kōura, engari kaua e tukua ite hiriwa me te kōura hei atuatanga mou.
There is a Taniwha on its way with teeth of silver and gold. Do not fear the teeth of silver and gold just do not allow it to become your God.
A taniwha that only respected the written word and the rule of law, thus a Declaration of Independence, He Whakaputanga, was created and signed by rangatira on 28 October 1835.
Link to article: Debbie Ngarewa-Packer: ‘Our tupuna were not just waiting to be found’ - NZ Herald