1 Sep 2017

Crown to pardon Tūhoe prophet Rua Kēnana

8:16 pm on 1 September 2017

The Crown has announced it will return to Maungapōhatu to grant a statutory pardon to Tūhoe prophet Rua Kēnana.

Rua Kēnana, pictured about 1907, and Maungapōhatu Marae in 2016

Rua Kēnana, pictured about 1907, and Maungapōhatu Marae in 2016 Photo: Alexander Turnbull Library (Rua Kēnana) / Edward Gay (Maungapōhatu Marae)

Next week, the Crown will sign a historic agreement at Maungapōhatu to advance a statutory pardon for Mr Kenana.

Rua Kenana standing at the doorway of the temple.

Rua Kenana standing at the doorway of his temple. Photo: Supplied / Auckland Museum Collections

They will also apologise to the descendants of Mr Kēnana in a ceremony to be held at Maungapōhatu.

In 1916, armed police invaded Manugapōhatu to arrest Rua Kēnana, and his two sons were killed in an exchange of gunfire with police officers.

Mr Kēnana was then imprisoned for 18 months.

Māori development minister Te Ururoa Flavell said more than a century has passed since these events happened and it's time to right the wrong.

"It was a heart breaking moment in the history of our nation. His descendants and followers of the faith have suffered immeasurably since the police actions of that fateful day."

After the agreement is signed the next step in the process will be the Crown bringing in legislation.

This will also include a summary of the circumstances surrounding the 1916 invasion of Maungapōhatu and subsequent events - to enshrine the statutory pardon in law.

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