25 Jan 2015

Concern for Maori King's health

11:32 am on 25 January 2015

A senior member of the Rātana Church says the Maori King, Tuheitia Paki, is very unwell and his health is declining.

Maori King Tuheitia Paki at the Ranana Marae in Whanganui.

Maori King Tuheitia Paki Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

The comment was made at the celebrations at Rātana Pā near Whanganui to commemorate the anniversary of the birth date of its prophet, Tahupotiki Wiremu Rātana.

Ratana spiritual apostle Andre Meihana said he had been told the King's health was getting worse due to his diabetes and other illnesses.

Mr Meihana said the King left his sick bed to attend Friday's pōwhiri at the Pā because of his strong bond with the Church.

"Even though he's not well, he will get out of his bed just to be here."

He said the King did not stay long and did not attend on Saturday afternoon, as he traditionally had in the past.

Last year King Tuheitia was admitted to hospital after suffering from what was described as diabetes-related ailments.

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