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Tamatea Pōkai Whenua App Launch Aupaki Kāhui Ako — Jul 2, 2019

Tamatea Pōkai Whenua

A story about Tamatea Pōkai Whenua and his people of Ngāti Wheke.

The story that is retold at the marae by the hapū of Ngāti Wheke relates to the maunga that overlooks Rāpaki, Te Poho o Tamatea Pōkai Whenua (the breast of Tamatea).

It is named after the explorer Tamatea Pōkai Whenua who is said to have climbed this peak to recite a karakia asking a tohunga to send fire to warm his people. Names associated with Tamatea’s journey can be found throughout the Ngāti Wheke takiwā.

This is the story between Tamatea and the ancestor Ngatoroirangi when in need of support he sent the fires to the South Island and saved Tamatea and his people.

The whakapapa of this story is about the connection of these renowned explorers in different parts of Aotearoa. The journey the flames (fire) took from the North to the South. This story acknowledges the kinship of the people of the south and the descendants of Ngatoroirangi.

This Ngāi Tahu version of this story is told by te Hapū o Ngāti Wheke, where their sacred mountain is named after the explorer. The original illustrations were created by a member of the hapū, Hēmi Te Hēmi.

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  • Colour in the illustrations
  • Notes