'Honour people who contributed to Aotearoa': Petition to redesign NZ's money

By Kelvin McDonald
Photo / File

Dame Whina Cooper, Eva Rickard or women's suffrage campaigner Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia are a better choice for NZ's $20 notes than a British monarch, Te Matahiapo Safari Hynes (Rangitāne, Ngāti Kahungunu) has told RNZ.

The Wellington student has launched a petition to redesign NZ's coins and notes with images that better represent Aotearoa.

Hynes says trees like pōhutukawa, harakeke plants or birds such as huia better reflect who we are as a country.

"We have an opportunity to honour the people who have contributed to our nation and showcase more symbols that truly represent us as Aotearoa," Hynes' #ourownmoney petition says.

"We have so many people in our country's history that have paved the way for us to be where we are today and how we will be in the future. This is in opportunity to acknowledge and recognise their hard work."

The Reserve Bank has signalled King Charles III will feature in the next redesign but this is still some way off.