May 10, 2021

Maori News & Indigenous Views

Maori paddlers assulted during Rugby World Cup 2011 opening #RWC2011

1 min read

(STUFF) Friday’s Rugby World Cup opening turned sour for five young Maori who ended up in Auckland City Hospital.

They were part of the crew that paddled the 20 waka into the harbour and performed a haka at Queens Wharf.

They had finished their performance and were making their way towards the Hilton Hotel when the large group was separated by a wave of people pushing and running.

The men of the group tried to protect the women and elders and formed a guard by linking their paddles together.

Bottles were being thrown and some of the young women in the group were knocked to the ground.

Binny McGee-Repia, 14, from Te Kura Kaupapa Maori O Puau Te Moananui A Kiwa in Glen Innes, was taken to Auckland City Hospital after the ordeal along with four other girls.

”All I remember was getting pushed back and hit in the head.”

Binny had a CAT scan which found no head injuries and was lucky to escape with bumps and bruises. One girl was treated for shock and another for a broken rib.

Group co-ordinator Niki Tauhara is angry at how the performers were looked after.

No police or security were sent to help us. I had 147 [performers] I was caring for and my only concern was that they get back to the hotel safely. Our group had to fend for themselves out there.”

8 thoughts on “Maori paddlers assulted during Rugby World Cup 2011 opening #RWC2011

  1. Such a disgrace!!. Angers one to read of such ramant racism festering from today’s society. How are Maori supposed to walk side by side with our so called decent counterparts? when we were all otherwise there to celebrate a commemorable occasion…..

    LABOUR’s campaign’s slogan read something like “National will make you all tenants in your own country”. Hell, throw another log on the fire moit.

  2. Shit that’s ratshit hearing about the young kohine getting roughed up and abused. Just watching it on t.v it looked like the haka boys couldnt even move properly and had to haka in close proximty to each other…but still done an awesome job under the circumstances. I had heaps of mates in the waka’s that day, they said their asses were getting felt from women in the crowd and getting grabbed. Most of them thought it was funny when we talked about it. But one said he was about to punch someone from the crowd cos he thought it was a man pulling his arm..he turned around to see it was a lady. So I guess men and women in the crowd were playing up. Still gutted hearing about the kohine though.

  3. Just shows how rife racism still is here in Aotearoa… I had a moko on my face for the opening game at Eden Park,after the game I had a couple of quiets with whanau in Kingsland and some of the racist remarks from some pakeha. Guttless tho when they are questioned and called over for a korero. No takers. A real shame alot of pakeha are still that ignorant and racist to Tikanga Maori today and my heart goes out to those kaihoe waka and the abuse you all suffered for being who we are Maori. Kia kaha koutou ma. E tu kaha!

  4. I was a waahine/women in one of the other waka, we were actually looked after and guarded by our taane/men. As soon as the Finn Bros started playing we headed straight out of that area, and were waiting for the rest of our waka, when the kaihautu of the lead waka asked/told us wahine to get in the middle of them and then we smartly got out of there. There were a couple of times we had to slow down especially under the screen, but we made it back to the Hilton, no problem. There was a feeling by us that we did get deserted by security and the police presence once we got to the Cloud. We should have been better organised to know to get our Waka Tangata(Men/Women) Crews adopted by our Waka Taaua/ Men Warriors, once we left the Cloud and even to the point of leaving the HIlton because that would have pretty scary for young wahine crews, too.

    1. I am relieved to hear that the wahine were looked after as there was no reporting of how the kaihoe came to be injured and I assumed they were on their own. I was very upset to hear that this happened to our young people, especially as the waka is such a positive development for our people and the young ones are entitled to take part and be treated with equal respect in their own right. Ka aroha ki a koutou katoa. I was also in the crowd downtown but didnt get anywhere near the waterfront. I was confused by the noise, shoving and pushing and general misbehaviour of many young people with no adult supervision, drinking and being abusive to other people. If the city is serious about holding public events like this in future, they should have made it alcohol free and policed it appropriately, even if half that number turned up it was still a scrap waiting to happen.

  5. What a shame! aotearoa, you looked so stunning in the opening
    i’m sure all maori and pakeha were proud, but then to read this crap .
    and no response from our Pirihimana….Dame that takes the aroha out of the event , Kia kaha to those who took part in the rowing , you guys were tu meke .kia ora.

  6. Bloody shameful bastards they r…. when my self and family were watching the opening and i saw the canoe i just burst into tears…im so proud of our culture… Im sorry this has happened to you and hope things are sorted out and everyone involved r all okay lots of love from my whanau to my beautiful country NEW ZEALAND1!! GO THE MIGHTY ALL BLACKS!!

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