Kapowairua through the eyes of Kuia Tuini Sylva

Wai 45

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Tuini Sylva provided this submission to the Waitangi Tribunal as part of the Muriwhenua Land Report. It provides one  of the best windows  to who was living at Kapowairua and how our whanau lived in the early twentieth century. It provides context and captures many of the stories of our people in an open and honest way.

“My name is Tuini Sylva, my iwi is Ngati Kuri. I was born on 17 April 1923 at Waikanae.

Kapowairua was a kainga of my tupuna, they all lived there and I was ,brought up there as a child.

Mihipeka = Rewiri Hongi = Harata


Emeri Hopa = Murupaenga = Maata



My grandfather, Rewiri Hongi, was the .paramount chief at Kapowairua, as was Hongi Keepa before him. Rewiri stayed at a number of plac·es including Te Wairahi (the first ridge behind the lighthouse at Te Rerenga Wairua), Whangakea, Kapowairua and Takapaukura. The majority of his children to Mihipeka were born at Takapaukura, including my father. The second family were born at Kapowairua.”