The Ngarimu Victoria Cross Investiture Meeting and Reception to His Excellency the Governor General, 6 October 1943.
On 4 June 1943 news was broadcast world-wide that 2/Lt Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa Ngarimu had been awarded the Victoria Cross for his role in the attack on Point 209 at Tebaga Gap, Tunisia. It was the sixth VC to be awarded to a New Zealander in the war, and the first to a Maori soldier.
The public investiture ceremony where the Governor-General presented the award to Mr & Mrs Hamuera Ngarimu was held at Whakarua Park in Ruatoria, Ngarimu’s home town. At the time it was one of the largest and most fully documented Māori gatherings ever held. Despite the rain and mud, 7000 people attended the event, including the Prime Minister and other parliamentarians, Battalion members on furlough, Home Guardsmen and 1300 schoolchildren, who came from all parts of the country. Three hundred performers had been brought together from the Gisborne district alone. Te Whānau-ā-Apanui and Ngāti Porou, led by Sir Apirana Ngata hosted the event that featured five hours of entertainment. Members of the National Film Unit, the official Government photographer - John Pascoe, and the press documented the event. Cameramen from the US Marine Corps also headed to Ruatoria to record the event. Read more about the event here.
Sir AT Ngata: ... kia puta nga wahine ki mua. Whiti mai nga tamariki ki muri. Ko Haukiwi. Haukiwi. Bring up the programmes Pita, a lot of people don’t understand what’s happening. The next item is the “Hau Kiwi, Hau Weka,” the a-b-c of womens hakas of welcome in three, four timing. This is how it goes - Haukiwi, hauweka kawea he korero kia whakarongo mai and so on. There is a leading reference at the end to the mud. You’ll understand it. Takitakina.
NSP 6a performed by Hikurangi section of Ngati Porou
Kaea: Ei tena i karawhiua! Haukiwi, hauweka kawea he korero kia whakarongo mai―
Katoa: Nga iwi o te motu pakia!
Kaea: Aue! E te tai whakarunga! E te tai whakararo!
Ka pupuru tonu
Katoa: Te hukatai moana nui, aue!
Nga iwi whakakeke o Nui Tireni,
Huri ke, anga ke!
Kaea: Ta ke, ta ko, taka rawa!
He paruparu no te Tairawhiti,
Kia ruku mai koe!
Ana to kai! Ana to kai! Hei!
Sound file from Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright. To request a copy of the recording, contact Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright.
Alexander Turnbull Library
Walking in the mud after the rain - photograph taken by J D Pascoe Date: 6 Oct 1943.
Further information and copies of this image may be obtained from the Library through its 'Timeframes' website, http://timeframes.natlib.govt.nz. Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Matauranga o Aotearoa must be obtained before any reuse of this image.