Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Over a quarter of a century ago James Takamore left his ancestral home in Tu Hoeand moved south to follow his dreams in Christchurch as a builder,  oh how his talents would be in demand today.

Nothing so unusual there. He did what many young people, some with Maori in their genes, did.

He met and established a home with Denise Clark and raised a family, still pretty much normal.

After some 20 years of aparent happiness that all came to a sudden end when James died.

His family in keeping with James' culture had his body lying at his local Marae in the Eastern Suburb he had made his home.
Not exactly a common practice here in our city but not unknown and becoming more widely adopted as accepted method as to how some deal with death in multi cultural New Zealand, both those who consider themselves Maori and non maori.

Then a very unusual occurrence happened with a cultural clash between his long standing partner and executor and his more or less now distant  family from Tu Hoe. His Native family from a past he had largely abandoned in a relationship sense, went to the Marae removed his  body into the back of a station waggon and drove it north to their homeland where they  interred it in a Urupa there.

This all seemed a little odd to most down here in the village James had made home. The police were aware of what was happening and to the dismay of his wife and children made no attempt to intervene only "shadowing" the entourage.
Now after five, yes five years of legal wrangling, the NZ Supreme court has ruled that as executor of the will, Denise Clark is the sole authority as to what happens to James Takamore's remains. The lower court order for exhumation and reburial in accordance with Denise's wishes is to be upheld.

With Tu Hoe's established track record of selective use of "white mans law" good luck with that, then it will be interesting as to who pays, as it has not been and will still not be, cheap.

Not much of a fifth Christmas wrangling over what many thought was a basic right to rest in peace for a comparatively young man whose untimely death had brought enough grief to his surviving family.

Have heard an opinion from Denise Clark's lawyer who is suggesting that rather than upholding the rights of the deceased through an executor appointed by the will, to carry out the wishes of the  the dead person they have added rubbish about the "rights of the extended family and  cultural issues that weakens the law as most understood it".

May have been a "claytons" victory.

And I thought the Parliament was the place to create law, the collective intellect of the SC seems to be of a different opinion.

Thanks a bunch Helen Margaret et al.


IHStewart said...

NZ Police epic fail.

Mike said...

What's the bet it will be a Treaty Breach?

Marc said...

The cost should be deducted from the budget of the shameful police department that stood by and did nothing. Who were too scared of offending the perpetrators of this disrespect when it could have been nipped in the bud at the Cook Strait crossing.

This a a stain on you NZ Police - it was a gutless lack of action on your part, and I will never forget the resulting grief you have put this family through.

Barnsley Bill said...

They will never dig that poor bugger up. The entire tribe will be waiting with clubs to stop it happening.

Anonymous said...

Clubs? What happened to the muskets, beads and blankets they got? They could fire the beads and use the blankets as wad. And they say the white man did nothing for them - ungrateful savages.


Paulus said...

They will say that the Treaty is above whitey's Supreme Court laws -so get stuffed.
It is also reported that the body was been moved to a secret place.
Probably the local Police are Maori anyway and they will do nothing to upset the whanau.

baxter said...

"who pays, as it has not been and will still not be, cheap."

Reckon the taxpayer will have to chip in a bit there mate, don't think it will cost Tuhoe much out of the tens of millions of bucks graciously given by the government.