Tariana Turia celebrated for her work

By Wepiha Te Kanawa

She was the driving force behind Maoridoms most influential political movement, today Dame Tariana Turia joins the NZ Order of Merit for her services in Parliament spanning 2 decades. Te Kāea was with her today at her Marae in Whangaehu.

She told Te Kāea,“About ten days ago got a letter from John Key I was a bit overwhelmed and kind of wondered whether really I deserved to be a Dame. It’s a huge honour but I know that I never got her on my own.”

Dame Tariana Turia companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services as a Member of Parliament, but at her marae she's just nan.

“You know I’m just nann here, I really don’t know if they think about Political aspects. They’ve missed me since I’ve been in Wellington that’s been my biggest sacrifice. I absolutely love my kids and my grandchildren, my great grandchildren and all of my relatives. I’ve got cousins who are no longer here on earth who would be sitting across there in the urupa saying you’ve always been a Dame.”

She's achieved so much in her lifetime, however she does have some regrets.

“I certainly can understand much of the reo but I don’t have the reo myself and it’s been my biggest weakness. I’ve always felt quite inadequate not having it and its actually quite painful to have to admit that.”

Being a politician isn't an easy job, today her services to the country have been recognised.

“I think people don’t really realise the sacrifices you make I mean you can go to Parliament and do as little as possible, if you choose that’s not what people want from you.  They want you to work hard for them, their situation is such that we owe them. So to go to Parliament you shouldn’t  go unless you are there to fight and make a difference for them.”