A brief history of Māori...

There is a long history behind the formation of the New Zealand Māori Council, as part of the continuing Māori Council, as part of the continuing Māori struggle for self-determination


The Council’s systems can be traced back to the Kingitanga, with its systems of rūnanga, karere and watene, followed through by the Kōtahitanga movement and the Māori parliaments in the 1800s and early 1900s


In 1900, sir James Carroll introduced the Māori Councils Act, which provided for elected, self – governing bodies in rural Māori communities. At that time, the Government would not recognise the need for ori organisation at a national or district level, which would lead to “Māori nationalism”. 


This changed in 1945 when the Councils set up for the effort were reorganised to fit with the districts established for the war effort. However, the Government still refused to recgnoise a national Māori body.


The Māori Community Development Act 1962 changed this, by establishing the New Zealand Māori Council as a national body under the Act.

Orginally, the Māori Community Development Act 1962 esatbalished the Māori Council districts based on the seven Māori Land Court districts, and provided the Council with the authority to establish additional districts or amend district boudaries as appropriate. These seven have since become 16 districts.

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