Thousands head to Waitangi Day commemorations
Thousands of people turned up for the Waitangi Day commemorations at Queen Elizabeth Park last Friday.
The day started with a pōwhiri which included a wero and speeches from Kahu Ropata and Hepa Potini of Ngāti Toarangatira. Supporting visitors to the event was Council’s kaumātua Rakauoteora Te Maipi.
Mayor Ross Church and Chair of Greater Wellington Regional Council Fran Wilde spoke at the conclusion of the pōwhiri.
The district’s Memorandum of Partnership, which sets out how the iwi partnership group Te Whakaminenga o Kāpiti and Council will work together over the next three years, was then signed. The memorandum has now been in place for 21 years.
“This is the longest formal partnership any council has had with its iwi,” Mayor Church says. “I’ve got a very small part to play as the current Mayor of Kāpiti, but if we all do our bit, this partnership will continue to flourish.”
The pōwhiri was followed by a line-up of live music and activities for young people.
Crowds increased steadily throughout the day with numbers estimated around 4,000.