Mataora celebrates Māori King's 10yr anniversary

By Mānia Clarke-Mamanu

Former Katchafire member Haani Totorewa will showcase his new facial tattoo at this weekend Marley NZ All-Stars tribute concert.  He says the tribute will also honour King Tuheitia's 10 year reign.

Totorewa says his mataora celebrates an important milestone of the Māori King.

"It's an expression of love by my marae and sub-tribes, Ngāti Hine and Ngāti Naho to the King.  It's his 10th year as our King.
Three weeks ago 13 women received moko kauae and two men received mataora from Maurea marae to coincide with the Poukai they will host on Saturday. 

"I'm comfortable in my own skin.  I still feel the same now, but the difference is showing and revealing to the world, who am I?  I'm Māori."

The former Katchafire keyboardist left the popular reggae band two years ago, and now teaches Māori.  The request from his elder brother to take part in the mokopapa came as a surprise.

"I was shocked because I didn't think I would be chosen to receive a tattoo.  But I agreed that day.  From that day in October till the day I received my mataora, I prepared myself mentally, physically and spiritually."

Totorewa says a quarter of my face is tattooed but, there's more to do. 

"Perhaps next year I'll complete the tattoo above my eyebrows. Then, that's it for me."

The Marley All Star tribute event will be held in Kerikeri on Friday night.