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Labour mourns Parekura Horomia

David
SHEARER
Labour Leader
29 April 2013 MEDIA STATEMENT
Labour mourns Parekura Horomia

Whatungarongaro te tangata toi tu whenua
As man disappears from sight, the land remains

Kua hinga he totara i te wao nui a Tane
A totara has fallen in the forest of Tane


Labour Leader David Shearer says he and his colleagues are devastated at the loss of Labour MP, the Honourable Parekura Horomia, “our matua”.

“We send our love and thoughts to his whanau, especially his sons and his mokopuna, and to all the others whose lives he has touched.

“New Zealand has lost a truly great Maori leader.

“Parekura devoted his life to championing Maori aspiration and achievement. Before entering politics he was a leader in work and community employment schemes on the East Coast. He took his grassroots knowledge through to leadership within the public sector, in roles in community employment and Maori development.

“As an MP and Minister he worked tirelessly to support the achievements of his people and of Maori across New Zealand.

“Under his guidance Maori well-being improved, employment increased and opportunities in education flourished. He also oversaw the establishment of Maori Television and expansion of iwi radio.

“As a politician there were few who could match Parekura’s knowledge of Maori issues. At every marae and town in this country Parekura was welcomed as a leader and a friend. He was respected across New Zealand and across political lines.

“His wisdom, passion and humour were a guiding light for Labour, and I will miss him and his advice tremendously.

“His loyalty to Labour and to our values of inclusion, fairness and solidarity was absolute. He stood strong for the people of Ikaroa-Rawhiti and for the rights of all Maori.

“We have lost a man of immense mana, a man of conviction and of compassion. We celebrate his contribution to Aotearoa-New Zealand, and we mourn the loss of a great leader.

“The Labour whānau is heart-broken today,” David Shearer said.

Moira Coatsworth, Labour Party President said: “Parekura, our Labour matua and Vice President, will leave a huge gap. He was loved and respected throughout New Zealand after a lifetime of service fighting hard for a better life for all. Within Labour he inspired dedication and much affection and he worked tirelessly for our movement.”

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