Dr Wally Penetito centre with Professor Whatarangi Winiata on his left and to his right is Lynne Raumati and behind from left are Daphne Luke and Manurere Devonshire.
Emeritus Professor (retired) Wally Penetito is the new project leader of the Hapū/iwi Histories Project for Te Hono ki Raukawa.
Twenty-five hapū/iwi from Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Kauwhata and Te Reureu are or will be carrying out research for the Waitangi Tribunal claims. The reports will comprise up to 10,000 words and are a snapshot identifying the traditional takiwā (locations) of the hapū/iwi, their key whakapapa lines, the resources they once held, pepehā, sites of significance, rangatira of the 19th – 20th century and present day locations and marae. The reports will have supporting maps, whakapapa (genealogy) and photos.
Wally says he feels very fortunate to be asked to lead the project. He looks forward to the challenge of ensuring the hapū/iwi have the opportunity to put forward their case regarding colonisation and the severe detrimental impacts it has had on them.
He wants to ensure each hapū/iwi is able to produce the best report it can, given the resources available to them and the limited time they have to ensure their authentic ‘voices’ are recorded.
He took the job because he has worked with Te Wānanga o Raukawa and Professor Whatarangi Winiata on a number of occasions and he says he has the deepest respect and admiration for the whole Te Hono ki Raukawa project.
He has been part of the Ngā Pūkenga forum that provides support to Te Hono and the various researchers engaged in research work for the claims.
Wally has recently retired as the Professor of Māori Education and Co-Director of He Parekereke: Institute for Research and Development at Victoria University. He has a long and varied career in education as a teacher, an adviser to schools, a senior government public servant, a researcher, and a college of education and university lecturer. Wally is the author of the hugely popular "What's Māori About Māori Education" book published in 2015.
Wally has iwi affiliations to Ngāti Haua, Ngāti Tamaterā and Ngāti Raukawa (Ngāti Tukorehe, through the Wehipeihana whanau, and Ngāti Pareraukawa). He is married to Sheena and they have an adult family of three with eight grandchildren. The couple have made their home in Paraparaumu Beach.
Wally replaces Dr Gary Raumati Hook who is in the United States spending time with his family and is also recovering from a serious bout of pneumonia.