Politicians pay tribute to Pita Paraone

By Heta Gardiner

The sting of loss continues to resonate across the country as friends, family and former colleagues come to terms with the loss of Pita Paraone.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was one of many who paid tribute to Paraone from Parliament today.

“He was a thoughtful, considered, and kind man. I know he will be a real loss, to the north in particular.” 

Pita Paraone was a Member of Parliament for three terms. His last stint ended after the 2017 election.

Current Māori MPs recall him being a strong support for them all.

Peeni Henare says he was a caring person, he looked after his marae, all for the betterment of the Māori people.

Kelvin Davis described him as a humble man who wouldn't say a bad word about anyone and the north was under a cloud of darkness, after his passing.

NZ First member Shane Jones said while Paraone was a gentle soul he confronted challenges and conflict without fear in everything he did.

Trevor Mallard praised Paraone for his ability to generate a deeper understanding between the Crown and hau kāinga at Waitangi.

“He was a wonderful link between Waitangi and Parliament. I think the way Waitangi has developed into a positive interaction, between the crown and Māori, very much is a result of his work as an intermediary.”

Paraone and the work he carried out throughout his lifetime will never be forgotten.