Iwi leaders chosen to form King's Council

Maori King Tuheitia.
Maori King Tuheitia.

A dozen Maori leaders from around the country have been selected to a new national advisory board to the Maori King Tuheitia.

The Tekaumarua, the King's Council of Twelve, were selected after 48 iwi leaders met at Waikato-Tainui College for Research and Development.

The king was not present during the final deliberations but will formally accept the appointments once mandates have been ratified.

Kingi Tuheitia signalled his intention to re-establish the Tekaumarua last August when he asked for iwi leaders to suggest suitable candidates.

The Tekaumarua dates back to the second Maori King Tawhiao and until the time of Te Arikinui Te Atairangikaahu, and was selected from within the Tainui tribal membership.

Waikato are the kaitiaki or caretakers of the Kingitanga and King Tuheitia wanted to give tribes from around the country a greater say in the growth and development of the movement in the modern era.

The council will advise and represent the king on key issues and kaupapa affecting Maori development on social, cultural, economic, spiritual and political issues.

Ngati Awa kaumatua Hemana Manuera was selected as the inaugural chairman and heads a team stacked with credentials including Waikato University professor of te reo and tikanga Pou Temara, a Te Arawa kaumatua who was knighted in this year's New Year honours list Sir Toby Curtis, and former Maori women's welfare league president and Silver Ferns captain Dame June Mariu.

A Kahui Wairua was also established to make sure all faiths are considered in the work of the Kingitanga and that Maori spirituality and Christian values feature in the council's duties.

Tekaumarua members

Hemana Manuera (Chair)

Pou Temara

Che Wilson

Te Kahautu Maxwell

Sir Toby Curtis

Kihi Ngatai

Mereiwa Broughton

Erima Henare

June Mariu

One member will be chosen from Te Kohanga Reo, Maori Women's Welfare League and the NZ Maori Council.

Te Kahui Wairua

Waka Paama

Huirangi Waikerepuru

Wayne Te Kawa

Joe Everitt

Membership from the Ringatu church, Paimarire, Anglican Church, Catholic Church and others.