May 16, 2021

Maori News & Indigenous Views

“self-appointed” Maori leader threatens violence against woman

3 min read

(NZ Herald | Yvonne Tahana’s article ‘Boiled head’ curse sparks inquiry over rights adviser – with additions as outline below by A Human Rights Commission adviser has allegedly cursed outspoken Ngapuhi man David Rankin in Maori on an online forum, raising the spectre of a “boiled head”.

Mr Rankin has complained about employee Marama Davidson over a series of online posts – the latest of which allegedly included the word “pokokohua”.

The term puts someone’s head in the same category as food and is hugely insulting.

He alleges that over the past six months Ms Davidson has attacked him for his views which have included criticising Te Tii Marae for charging journalists at Waitangi and calling the hikoi to Parliament over the latest foreshore legislation an “embarrassment” to Maori.

“Considered cumulatively, I believe her comments amount to hate speech. In the latest example … she wrote on ‘David Rankin – pokokohua! I can’t wait to tell him to his face!”‘

Mr Rankin alleges Ms Davidson has also used Facebook during work hours to air her views about him.

The complaint was lodged with chief commissioner Rosslyn Noonan.

Mr Rankin draws the ire of some in Maoridom. He is outspoken and variously annoys Maori politicians, journalists and the intelligentsia who say he has no credibility but has mastered the art of the press release.

He also employed a few of his own swear words to criticise Ms Davidson – saying she had a problem with free thinkers who didn’t toe a “born again” Maori line.

He had considered hiring a lawyer to start a defamation case. “If you’re promoting yourself as part of the Human Rights Commission you do not say to a Maori ‘go boil your head’.

“She’s been going at me for six months, every time I open my mouth. Sometimes, these arseholes need to know, you open your mouth on Facebook and I’m going to punch you out.

Additional Comment from

Response to Rankin’s comments via Facebook have been quick and all supportive of Ms Davidson, one commenter saying

“I can’t believe this. She hasn’t been “going” at him for six months at all. She’s been responding to his very public comments which, quite often, are sad-sack controversial, not very well articulated and clearly ill-thought out. This see…ms to be entirely selective as well and designed to inflict maximum damage, and upset an incredibly decent person. The violence in Rankin’s response is shameful and embarrassing. As someone often described by the media as a Ngapuhi “leader”, I beg to differ. Anyone that speaks with such vitriole and violence is not fit to lay claim to the title of “leader”.”

In addition there has been a great deal of concern regarding Rankin’s threats of violence against this woman and mother.

Yvonne’s (NZ Herald) article continues below…

“They feel tough behind a computer screen, but they’re too frightened to say it to my face.

“We purport aroha and manaakitanga [love and care] but if someone puts a different point of view they want to kill ya.

Commission spokesman Gilbert Wong said an investigation was under way and would be complete before next Friday.

Part of the investigation would include determining if the comments were made during work hours.


What is pokokohua?

A term which puts someone’s head on the same level as food. It is considered extremely insulting.

10 thoughts on ““self-appointed” Maori leader threatens violence against woman

  1. Pokokohuia is a poke in the eye. Dont shoot the messenger if you dont like the message. Do my fellow Maori think 105 embargoed sites will stop the truth coming out. That over the 1000s of years of this lands history our footprints were not recently he very first on these shores. Were our ancestors deceiving us when they past on the oral history of these earlier peoples. Or has political correctness and financial gain become the foundation of our culture rather than truth and integrity.

  2. Serious Activist david rankin is so embarrassed,
    Rankin! put your whanau chopping skills to good use and, go and chop some wood for your kaumatua and kuia for winter, cos you need some serious come to Jesus heart surgery david rankin activist.
    I would advise your people to acknowledge the signs and withdraw there support for your unscrupulous misguided course to the destruction (at the highest level) any chance of TINORANGATIRATANGA KATOA

  3. My first reaction to this taki was drop both of them in the middle of the ranges, swandri's and gumboots, no phone, no compoota, no kai, no cotton sheets, and see who comes out first. It wont be Riches to Rags Rankin! te hehehehehe!

  4. There is the korero of Hone Heke sitting on the beach at Kororareka demanding utu from a woman who called him a poaka. David Rankin claims direct descent from Hone Heke (although there are those who believe Heke had no issue). Is David Rankin trying to step in his tupuna's footprints? A funny way of doing it – crying to the Human Rights Commission

  5. Good Job Rankin…U Offended Our Maori Pple by saying the Hikoi was an Embarrassment…Wot do U Expect???… Huh???…A Kiss U Tangiweto!!! :/ Wot goes Around cums around…Ugot Yors Soo Suck it up…Howly BAG :pft

  6. Rankin is a clown. He claims offence as according to maori culture but chooses to deal with it in a pakeha way, through the media. If he was that offended he should have either killed her under utu, which everyone knows he too chicken to do or, what he shoulda done in the first place, taken it to the paepae to argue it out.

    1. hehehehe nah thatz in your face not so tuff after all! Can dish it out but cant eat it!
      He needz to go sit in that santuary of Hone Heke in kaikohe and contemplate why his tupuna cut down the flags in stead of thinking hes taiaha proof ! Anybody with that attitude needz a crack on the head So it SHOCKX HIM IN TO PLACE!

  7. Time these 2 people grew up. the lady doesnt like what he says just ignore him. and for him go join up with micheal laws and take over an island in antartica

Leave a Reply to Tiritiowaitangi Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.