30 Mar 2012

Maori leaders remember Dr Hone Kaa

7:12 pm on 30 March 2012

Maoridom is remembering the late activist, clergyman, academic and child welfare campaigner Dr Hone Kaa.

The 70-year-old Archdeacon of Tamaki Makaurau had been battling cancer, and died in hospital on Thursday night.

He was of Ngati Porou and Ngati Kahungunu descent.

Chairman of Ngati Kahungunu, Ngahiwi Tomoana says Dr Kaa has left behind a legacy of change for Maori - and told his people that tamariki must be cherished.

He says Dr Kaa imprinted on the consciousness of all Maori that there is a duty to protect and nurture future generations and that any form of abuse is not acceptable.

Chair of Te Runanga o Ngati Whatua Naida Glavish says Dr Kaa was a charming man.

She remembers his leadership during the tangi of the Maori medical doctor, John McLeod.

Ms Glavish says he commanded total silence from everyone during his sermon - not even a baby sneezed.

She says it was an absolutely powerful moment.

Dr Kaa blended activism with his work for the church and he was a member of the Waitangi Action Committee along with the Labour list MP, Shane Jones.

Mr Jones recalls Dr Kaa displaying his sense of humour while greeting a group of Melanesians on the Waitangi Treaty grounds.

He says Dr Kaa told them he was a minister and Shane Jones was a minister, but said he could assure the visitors that his ministerial status would outlive Mr Jones's.

A requiem mass will be held at the Holy Sepulchre Church in Auckland on Saturday evening and Dr Kaa's body will be taken to Gisborne on Sunday.