The Māori Party congratulates one of its founding Co-leader’s Sir Pita Sharples, who received his Knighthood at Government House in Auckland today.
Sir Pita was appointed a Knight Companion in the 2015 Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services as a Member of Parliament and for services to Māori.
Māori Party Co-leader, Marama Fox, says, “Today is a significant day for us to acknowledge Pāpā Pita and his many achievements”.
The former Māori Party Co-leader of Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāi te Kikiri o te Rangi and Ngāti Pāhauwera descent has made extraordinary contributions to Māori development over the past fifty years.
These include establishing the country’s first Māori language immersion primary school in Auckland, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Hoani Waititi, and also helping to set up New Zealand’s only indigenous political party in Parliament.
Sir Pita became a Minister of Māori Affairs, Associate Minister of Education and Associate Minister of Corrections in 2008, four years after the Māori Party was formed.
“His track record attest to Sir Pita’s belief that Māori culture transforms people’s lives. He and former Māori Party Co-leader, Dame Tariana Turia, challenged the status quo and introduced groundbreaking initiatives across a range of whanau focused kaupapa that will continue to shape the nation”, says Māori Party Co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell.
The Māori Party congratulates all honours recipients who have received their awards at investiture ceremonies this month.