The people of Ngāi Tamahaua sub-tribe of Whakatōhea today celebrated the re-opening of their ancestral meeting house Muriwai. It's been two years since the renovations began on the house which suffered from structural damaged.
It's been a long two year's but today the people of Ngāi Tamahaua have come home.
Project manager Damian Papuni says “many have come here to support the re-opening of Muriwai, I'm very happy and emotional with that”.
Papuni says the project costs was over $400,000.
“The original house had a lean in it so the Trustees of the Marae commissioned for a structural expert to come and have a look at the house so it was a safety issue for the sub-tribe from this we understood the house was unsafe.”
Since 2016 the Marae has been closed down in order for renovations to take place during which the sub-tribe had to seek support from the wider tribe to cater to their needs.
Local elder Ruka Huddson says, “The other subtribes of this area Ngāti Rua, Ngāti Patu, Ngāti Ngahere support and allowed us to take our loved ones to their Marae when ours was closed”.
There are five projects of the redevelopment for Ōpape Marae this is the first, the second will look at ablution area and the third at the dining hall.