76. E Tu (Stand!) Remix
Written by Dean Hapeta
Performed by Upper Hutt Posse
From the LP Te Reo Maori Remixes, (Kia Kaha/Jayrem Records, New Zealand 1989)



Meet Dean Hapeta, Hip Hop activist. In the mid 1980s, Hapeta, inspired by Bob Marley and Public Enemy, launched New Zealand’s political hip-hop scene by linking the force of Maori culture with the struggle of black nationalism to fuel consciousness and controversy, and to provide a popular platform in support of Maori struggles for the ownership of their land. [1] Here are the lyrics to E Tu:

Karanga, (calling) Rangatahi, (youth) whakarongo, (listen) whakarongo
We’re nga tamatoa (warriors) So we must light te ahi (the fire)
Don’t get led astray by Babylon Kia mau ki to Maori (grasp and hold being Maori)

There’s a lot of people who think they’re tough today
But chiefs like Te Rauparaha woulda blown them away, Cher,
Hone Heke he expressed his disgust by cutting down the flagpole, huh
Pakeha (white people) killed Maori inna Matawhero
So Te Kooti exacted it in a slaughter

Yes, the Maori battalion inna World War Two
Staunch on the battlefield they had many clues
Like Moana Ngarimu on hill 209, Victoria cross so true so strong
Yes the Maori was a bad warrior
Strike fear in the hearts of the Babylon soldier
Yeah its true, yeah its true, that’s why I’m talking to you
Kia kaha, kia kaha (be strong, be strong) two one two two

Stand Proud,
Kia Kaha,
Say It Loud!

The man who tried to kill him was Von Tempsky
But he became a victim of his own folly
Cause Titokowaru was too smart you see,
Guerilla warfare, huh, Maori
The British raided a Pa (village) they thought it’d be a victory
But Kawiti fooled the enemy
The British raided the Pa yeah but they got shot down
Cause Kawiti had a plan and it was sound, break down

Te Rangihaeata believes in holding land
Against the foe, yo, the British man
To him land’s essential to the mana (authority) of the chief
And in the Hutt there were some hardcore feats
In 1846 in the Hutt Valley I said
Fighting broke out between the British and the Maori
And more than one settler on disputed land
Was killed when the Maori fought the British Plan

Cause white rule and injustice go hand in hand
So against that is where we stand
Don’t forget those who’ve fought before
Our struggle continues more and more
Yeah it’s a struggle, it’s a struggle
The systems got us in a muddle
So strive to get outta this puddle

Well I always put my mind to the rhyme
Don’t wear no gold chains cause we ain’t that kind
Don’t never rap and say I think I’m cool
Just preach the truth with us that’s a rule
Yeah, rising inflation to me is a crime
And sport is politics so don’t mess with my mind
They falsely own our land so they really don’t
We’ve been ripped off man so shut up I won’t

You gotta learn the history to know where ya truly are
Learn it somehow this ignorance has gone too far
Have self determination in what ya gonna do
Kia kaha, kia mau ki to Maori
Don’t let no-one stand on you


And now, a few words on migration to New Zealand from Judith Cranefield, great grand daughter of the generation of British families who emigrated to New Zealand in the mid to late 19th century. The following is an excerpt from Cranefield’s text, ‘The Farthest Promised Land – Immigration to New Zealand 1840 – 1880’:

The voyage to New Zealand was a long one – the longest emigration route in the world – three to four months (12000 miles, 20,000 km). It would seem that those who learned to adapt well to the voyage and who had the physical and mental energy and capacity to survive were more likely to adapt well to conditions of life in the colony. These emigrants from Great Britain had to cope with seasickness, strange surroundings, strange food, enforced cohabitation with people of different cultures, races, creeds. More diaries and letters seem to have been written on board ship than at any other time. Generally the people who had to travel steerage were used to hardship and discomfort. Their homelands after all were overcrowded with an impoverished humanity, many of whom had given up all hope of a better life.’ [2]

And if you were wondering what happened once the migrants arrived in New Zealand, read on. This is from the New Zealand Online History website:

The growing number of European migrants needed land, and some grew impatient. They thought that officials such as Governor FitzRoy were soft on Maori and did not protect settler interests. The New Zealand Company argued that the recognition of Maori land rights contained in Article Two of the Treaty should be restricted to ‘a few patches of potato-ground, and rude dwelling places’. It dismissed the Treaty as ‘a praiseworthy device for amusing and pacifying savages for the moment’. There was some support for this view in London, but missionaries and Crown officials in New Zealand did not agree.

In 1844 a British parliamentary committee declared the Treaty ‘injudicious’ and proposed a tax on all ‘uncultivated’ Maori lands. Confiscation would be the penalty for non-payment. A new constitution and charter for the colony in 1846 reflected such ideas. The governor was to assume ownership of large areas of Maori land not occupied according to European norms. Missionaries had pointed out that a specific standard of ‘occupation’, defined as the cultivation of crops, was being applied to Maori. This constitution was never implemented.

Governor Grey realised that policies that, in effect, seized land off Maori could provoke a mass uprising. He argued that Maori would willingly sell large areas of land to the Crown. Once given adequate funds, Grey initiated an ambitious programme of land purchasing. Nearly all of the South Island and about one-fifth of the North Island had passed into Crown ownership by 1865.’ [3]

It took the Maoris over two hundred years to reclaim their land. Here is a report of that historic event from AAP correspondents in Wellington, New Zealand, dated September 2008:

New Zealand’s Parliament today passed legislation to settle the largest ever claim by indigenous Maori over lost lands and resources.

The deal worth nearly $NZ420m ($344.59m) will give seven Maori tribes in the central North Island control of 176,000ha of commercial forestry land and $NZ223m ($182.96m) in accumulated rents.

The tribes, which represent more than 100,000 people, will also receive annual rents of $NZ13m ($A10.67m), becoming the largest private forestry land owners in New Zealand. Representatives of the Iwi (tribes) sang in the public gallery of Parliament after the legislation was passed.

Treaty Settlements Minister Michael Cullen said the legislation ’embodies an historic journey and settlement’. The deal is part of a process of settling Maori grievances over their loss of land and other natural resources after sovereignty of the country was signed over by many Maori chiefs to Britain in the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840.

In return, Maori were promised they would keep control of their land and resources. Maori claim much of their land was taken in unfair sales and confiscations after British settlers started arriving in large numbers in the mid-19th century.

Mr Cullen reiterated the Government wanted to settle all Maori claims by 2020.‘A time will and must come when the Crown (state) and Maori live as partners under the treaty, not as those restoring a broken past, but moving forward together into a healed future,’ he said.

The main Opposition National Party and other political parties in Parliament supported the settlement. National Maori affairs spokeswoman Georgina te Heuheu said her party would continue to accelerate the pace of settlements of Maori grievances if it formed a government after national elections on November 8.’ [4]



[1] ‘A Maori warrior claims new territory’, by Kerry Buchanan, UNESCO Courier, June/July 2000www.unesco.org/courier/2000_07/uk/doss22.htm

[2] ‘The Farthest Promised Land – Immigration to New Zealand 1840 – 1880’, by Judith Cranefield

[3] New Zealand History Online http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/politics/treaty/the-treaty-in-practice/early-crown-policy

[4] http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,24401531-401,00.html



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