Ngāti Porou says building a whare tipuna (traditional meeting house) on a local park in Gisborne to honour members of the 28th Māori Battalion C Company, has the full support of all iwi in the region.
An independent commissioner recently granted consent for the building, despite opponents saying it will have a negative impact on the park and be in breach of a deed of gift made by the original owner.
Ngāti Porou chairman Apirana Mahuika says it’s a project which has taken three years to become a reality.
He says once the whare tipuna is built, the momentous it houses will be a permanent memorial and archive to the men both Māori and non Māori who fought overseas.
Mr Mahuika says it will also be a reminder that there was a price paid by Māori to becoming citizens of New Zealand.
He says the six iwi whose whanau served in the Māori battalion, are paying for construction of the whare tipuna.
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