One of the host teams at this year’s Te Kahu o Te Amorangi – Te Matatini festival, Te Kapa Haka o Ngāti Ranginui are one of four teams representing the Takitimu region.
The team was established by the late Naisey Rihi Ngatoko to bring together the hapū and marae of Ngāti Ranginui in the Tauranga Moana region. Her vision also included maintaining Ranginui’s ancestral links to the Takitimu region, as their ancestor, Ranginui was the tuakana to Kahungunu.
In 1997 when Ngāti Ranginui won the Takitimu regional festival, their eligibility was challenged and the team disqualified because the team lived outside the Te Matau-a-Māui region. However with the support of the former Te Matatini Chair Tama Huata, Ngāti Kahungunu Chair Ngahiwa Tomoana and other Ngāti Kahungunu kaumātua descendants the team was formerly recognised and able to return to the Takitimu festival in 2008.
“I te ngaro a Ngāti Ranginui ka kitea, ka kitea, ka kitea,” is the team’s mission statement and signifies the development of the iwi’s teachings, history, whakapapa and taonga for future generations. It is also a legacy the late Te Awanuiārangi Black strived for and demonstrated in the Pukehinahina and Te Ranga commemorations.
The team is tutored by Wiparata Ngatoko, Te Kuka Tukaokao, Charlie Rahiri, William Robinson, Mere Horopapera and Kylie Willison. They are led on stage by kaitātaki tane Kuni Williams and kaitātaki wahine Stevie Reweiti.
Here is the group's whakaeke, 'TeWeranga' composed by William Robinson and Wīparata Ngatoko.