23 Apr 2013

Te Papa welcomes home Maori cloak from China

6:33 am on 23 April 2013

The National Museum of New Zealand - Te Papa Tongarewa - is welcoming home a traditional Maori feather cloak which has spent more than 50 years at the National Museum of China.

The kakahu huruhuru (feather cloak) was given to China's leader Mao Zedong in 1957 by pioneer film maker Ramai Te Miha Hayward on behalf of the fifth Maori King, Koroki, as a gesture of goodwill.

Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples made the announcement of its return after travelling with the Prime Minister to China recently.

In 2004, New Zealand ambassador, John McKinnon, searched for the cloak after seeing it on a documentary and found it stored in the National Museum of China in Beijing, with other foreign gifts.

The cloak will be displayed at Te Papa in Wellington from 13 June until 20 October this year.