UNITEC land blessed for new trades school building

By Numia Ponika-Rangi

An historic piece of land at Unitec with a lingering spiritual presence was blessed today by tribal leaders.

Taiaha Hawke (Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei), “This was a former battle site. More recently it was a hospital for those with mental illness. It was a hospital with a very torrid history.”

It was also an opportunity to remember those who contributed over the years. Hawke says, “Ngāti Whātua wanted to remember Takutai Wikiriwhi, who was a kaumātua of AUT in the early days. Others were Ani Pihema, Sir Hugh Kawharu and of course Eru Thompson.”

The blessed area at UNITEC will accommodate a newly built trades school for students looking to further their education in the trades industry.

UNITEC Kaumatua, Hare Paniora says, “Eventually, there will be a huge building erected here which will teach Trades and Engineering courses to the many students in search of knowledge.”