Tuesday, 25 May 2021 13:30

Honi O'Connor

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OPINION: Agriculture Minister Damien O'Connor doesn't get too many plaudits these days, but at this month's Ahuwhenua Awards he got one that took him by surprise and, he said, it was one of the nicest things anyone has said to him in a long time.

In a speech to the 800 or so people at the dairy awards, Paki Nikora, who is the chairman of Tataiwhetu Trust, declared O'Connor as an honorary Maori for his work in support of Maori.

There is no indication that other iwi support this, but certainly Maori Development Minister Willie Jackson supported the move saying that Damien was an Irishman and that Irishmen are just like Maoris.

O'Connor responded that while he was not part of the people from the mist (a reference to Tuhoe), he was from the people of the rain - the West Coast.

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