Kōrero: Rikiriki, Ātareta Kāwana Rōpiha Mere

Whārangi 1: Haurongo

Rikiriki, Atareta Kawana Ropiha Mere

1855/1856?–1926

Nō Ngāti Apa; he poropiti

I tuhia tēnei haurongo e Te Tiwha Puketapu,, ā, i tāngia tuatahitia ki Ngā Tāngata Taumata Rau Ko te wāhanga , 1996.

Tērā pea nō te tau 1855, 1866 rānei i whānau ai a Ātareta Kāwana Rōpiha Mere Rikiriki, arā, ko Mere Rikiriki rā tōna ake īngoa e mōhiotia whānuitia ana. Hei tamāhine a ia mā Kāwana Rōpiha o Ngāti Tauira rāua ko Mere Rikiriki o Ngāti Te Rangitepaia. Ko Kāwana Hūnia anō te īngoa o tōna pāpā. He hononga iwi ōna ki a Rangitāne me Ngāti Apa, ā, kei tata tonu ki Parewanui i Rangitīkei tōna kāinga i whakatipua ai. He uri anō hoki a ia nō te tino kauwaka, kaiwhakaora tūroro rā, nō Maata, i te takiwā i te tekau atu i 1840 e hau ana tōna rongo. Ko Mere Rikiriki anake te wahine poropiti o te wā o te tekau mā iwa o ngā rau tau, o te hunga whakapupū i te taha wairua, pērā i a Tāwhiao Te Wherowhero, i a Te Kooti, i a Tohu Kākahi, i a Te Whiti-o-Rongomai, i a Hipa Te Maihāroa me Tahupōtiki Wiremu Rātana. Nōna ka pakeke, he wā anō ia i Parihaka e noho ana i te taha o Te Whiti rāua ko Tohu Kākahi. Hei tohu mō tōna tūranga, ka riro nāna tonu a ia i iriiri i te awa o Rangitīkei i te 27 o Hūrae 1910. Ka whitu rawa ōna iriiritanga i a ia, te iriiri rā ki tā te tikanga pure, he karanga ki te Wairua Tapu. Ia tau, ia tau tonu, whakanuia ai te rā nei i Parewanui.

I tētahi wā anō o te tōmuatanga o te tekau tau atu i 1900, i tīmataria e Mere Rikiriki te Hāhi o te Wairua Tapu, tūhono mai ana ngā mema o ngā hāhi kē me te hunga Ringatū anō hoki. Nō tētahi hui karakia i Parewanui i te Kirihimete o te tau 1911, i whakaatu ai ia, kua hohou kē mai te wairua matakite ki roto ki a ia, ā, noho ake nā hei poropiti. Ahakoa tētahi pito wāhi o te mana tohunga i a ia, ko ngā karaipiture Karaitiana kē te pūtake ake o tōna Hāhi, ā, waiho hoki mā te Wairua Tapu me te kotahitanga o te iwi Māori i raro i te Atua me te Tiriti o Waitangi, te tangata e whakatau.

He wahine pakupaku noa a Mere Rikiriki. He hāmā nei te āhua o tōna moko, ā, he mea whiri hoki ngā makawe. Ko tāna nei whakaora i te tūroro, ko tā ngā rongoā Māori, me tā te ngākau whakapono. He wahine mōhio, he wahine mārama a ia ki te whaikōrero, ā, he tino pūkenga ki ngā karaipiture. Ahakoa rā āna kaiamuamu, tinitini tonu te nui o te tangata i tarea e ia te whakahui mai, ā, me te tokomaha anō o rātou e whakaatu ana i tō rātou pono, manawanui hoki ki tana kaha ki te whakaora tūroro.

Nō te tau 1912 te poropititanga a Mere Rikiriki tērā e puta ake he poropiti hou. He tautoko tāna i te poropititanga a Te Kooti o mua ake rā, mai i te hauāuru ka ara ake he kaiārahi hei whakahoki ake i te mana o te Māori. I te tuatahi, e pōhēhē kē ana tana kāhui, ko Rangi Māwhete, ko Panau Tamatai kē rānei tāna e mea ana. Kāti, nō muri kē tana whakatūturu atu ko tōna whanaunga tata tonu, ko Tahupōtiki Wiremu Rātana kē taua tangata, e mahi ana i runga i te whenua o tōna whānau i taua wā. Nō mua atu tana whakahua anō i ngā tama a Tahupōtiki, arā, i a Ārepa (Alpha) rāua ko Ōmeka (Omega), ēngari, he kaha rawa nō ngā wairua, i kore ai i kaha tōna ringa ki te pā atu, ki te iriiri rānei i a rāua.

Riro ana nā Mere Rikiriki i whakakaupapa te pūtake o ngā whakaakoranga a Rātana. Nāna nei a Tahupōtiki i tohutohu ā pakari noa, ā, i te mutunga mai tukua ana e ia tōna kaha ki te whakaora tūroro ki a ia; he haere tonu te mahi a Tahupōtiki ki te kite, ki te kōrero ki a Mere. Riro ana nā ngā waitohu me ngā whakakitenga, tae atu ki ngā tohutohu atu a Mere Rikiriki, te take i whakatika ai a Tahupōtiki ki te whakakaupapa i āna tikanga Karaitiana, me te tikanga nui anō hoki a te Tiriti o Waitangi. Nō muri ake i te tau 1918, nuku noa atu i te rohe o tōna iwi, hau ai te rongo o Tahupōtiki, arā, o te matakite, o te kaihautū me te tohunga whakaora tūroro. Nō te tau 1926 i haina ai a Mere Rikiriki i te kawenata a Rātana.

Nā Mere Rikiriki anō te kaupapa Māramatanga i whakahiwa ake, arā, ko tōna tikanga he whakakotahi kē i ngā tikanga Māori me ngā tikanga pono a te Hāhi Katorika. Inarā ko tā Rātana kē, he whakataha i te wā o mua, whakangaro atu i ngā mahi tapu o neherā, me te whakakore hoki i te mana o te tohunga. He mea ārahi, he mea tautoko tonu e Mere Rikiriki a Hōri Ēnoka, te kaihanga o te Māramatanga. Ko tētahi anō o ōna īngoa ko Māreikura. Hei tohu i te mana me te awe hoki o Mere Rikiriki, i tāpaetia atu ai e Kīngi Tāwhiao he haki māna, e mau nei te īngoa ko 'E Te Iwi Kia Ora'; kātahi te taonga matahīapo ko tēnei; ko ōna tino tohu ko Te Paki o Matariki, kei mua ake ngā mere e rua he mea whakawhiti te takoto. Hei tumu kaiwhakaatu anō hoki a ia ki a Rangi Māwhete, nāna nei i whai wāhi atu ai a Rātana ki te Rōpū Reipa o Aotearoa (New Zealand Labour Party), ā, meinga atu ana hoki ia hei mema ki runga i te Kaunihera Ture (Legislative Council) i te tau 1936.

Kei te mārama tonu ngā taonga tuku iho a Mere Rikiriki ki te Māramatanga me te kaupapa anō a Rātana, ngātahi hoki he raranga tahi. Huri noa i ngā kāinga Māori, puta noa i te motu, kitea ana te hohoutanga o tōna awe. Nō te 13 o Maehe 1926 i mate a ia i Parewanui. Ko tana tāne ko Īnia Te Rangi; ahakoa rā te pihi kore o te rito, riro ana nā ngā uri o ōna tungāne, nā Tāmati rāua ko Tīemi te kāwai i tuarā.

Me pēnei te tohu i te whārangi:

Te Tiwha Puketapu. 'Rikiriki, Ātareta Kāwana Rōpiha Mere - Rikiriki, Atareta Kawana Ropiha Mere', Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, first published in 1996. Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, https://teara.govt.nz/mi/biographies/3r22/rikiriki-atareta-kawana-ropiha-mere (accessed 20 November 2019)