Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Minister Jackson expresses sadness over passing of Paki Nikora

Māori Development Minister, Willie Jackson has expressed his sadness at the passing of Paki Nikora on Monday.

Mr Jackson said Mr Nikora was an influential Tūhoe leader, and his strength for supporting others would remain a lasting testament to the mana of the man.

“Paki was courageous. He was the voice for many who wanted to challenge the system and he did that right to his last days,” the Minister said.

“He always remained vigilant and kept others to account in emphasising tikānga Māori.

“His contribution to his iwi and its Treaty of Waitangi claims will be remembered by many.”

Mr Jackson said that while Mr Nikora was an astute farmer and businessmen, it was his rich knowledge from te ao Māori that best enabled him to inspire both the hearts and minds of those who knew him.

In addition to his work on tikanga and rangatiratanga, he was also a staunch advocate for the development of Tūhoe marae. He helped to renovate 11 marae with the help of the Provincial Growth Fund.

After being appointed chair in 2009, he went on to help convert the Tataiwhetu Trust farm near Ruātoki into an organic dairy farm, which won the Ahuwhenua Trophy in 2021. The Trophy is the most prestigious award for excellence in Māori farming. It acknowledges and celebrates business excellence in New Zealand’s important pastoral and horticultural sectors.

“Where Paki led, others followed. Our thoughts and prayers stay with his whānau at this time,” said Minister Jackson.

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