Kotahi rau e waru tekau mā tahi tau ki muri, i oti i a Apihai Te Kawau me tana iwi o Ngāti Whātua tētahi whenua te tuku ki a Kāwana Hōpihana me tana kāwanatanga hou hei wāhi noho mō te Pākehā. I whānau mai te kaupapa tuku whenua i tētahi kupu whakaari e mōhiotia nei ko he aha te hau? Ko ōna tohu nui, he tiki atu i a Hōpihana mā hei Pākeha hei hoa anō hoki mō Ngāti Whātua, e tupu mai ai he hua ki ngā iwi e rua.
I te ata o te 18 o Hepetema, i te tau 1840 i karapine ai ngā kanohi o te Karauna i Pukerangi, i reira whakanui ai i te whakatūtanga o Tāmaki hei tāone matua mō Aotearoa. I te 12.30 karaka i te ahiahi, ka rere te haki, ā, ka hurō te minenga, ka haruru ngā pū repo.
Ko tā Te Kawau i whakapono ai, ehara taua tuku whenua i te whenua hoko noa iho nei. Heoi he awarua tērā e eke ai a Ngāti Whātua, me te aha, he here tapu he here mauroa kei taua tuku whenua. I ēnei rā, ko tātou tonu tēnei e ngana nei e whakapau kaha nei ki te kawe tika i ngā mātāpono o tēnei tuku whenua e rangatira ai tā tātou mahitahi me te Karauna me te manomano tāngata kua whai wāhi ki tēnei whenua o tātou.
Saturday 18th of September marks 181 years since the Tuku Whenua by Apihai Te Kawau and Ngāti Whātua to Governor-Lieutenant William Hobson and his fledgling government. The Tuku Whenua was a response to the premonition he aha te hau, which was interpreted by many as a sign to invite the Pākehā to Tāmaki as a friend and partner where both Māori and settler would benefit.
On the morning of the 18th of September 1840, Crown representatives came to Tāmaki for a ceremony to mark the founding of the nation’s new capital at Point Britomart, Pukerangi. At around 12.30pm, a flag was run up and the whole assembly gave three cheers alongside a 21-guns salute.
Te Kawau saw the Tuku Whenua as more than just an exchange. It was the passage for Ngāti Whātua to transformative change that carried with it rights and responsibilities that were binding and ongoing. 181 years later, Ngāti Whātua o Ōrākei continue to honour the intention of the Tuku Whenua and work alongside our Treaty partner and all who have made central Tāmaki their home.