Ngāneko Minhinnick

Dame Ngāneko Kaihau Minhinnick DNZM JP (15 August 1939 – 15 June 2017) was a New Zealand Māori leader.

Dame Ngāneko Minhinnick

Minhinnick in 2013
Born(1939-08-15)15 August 1939
Died15 June 2017(2017-06-15) (aged 77)
Known forNgāti Te Ata leader
Spouse(s)Eden Minhinnick


Born on 15 August 1939 of Ngāti Te Ata descent, Minhinnick grew up in Waiuku and was one of 15 children.[1][2] From an early age she was chosen by her people as a future leader, attending Māori Land Court hearings from the age of 11, and becoming kaitiaki of Tāhuna Marae when she was 19 years old.[3] She had married her husband, Eden Minhinnick, when she was 16.[2][4]

Minhinnick was named the New Zealand Māori Council's young woman of the year in 1970, recognising her involvement in community affairs as a justice of the peace, Māori language interpreter, and teacher of Māori language at night classes.[4]

In 1985, Minhinnick was one of the leaders of the Manukau Harbour Claim concerning pollution of the harbour to the Waitangi Tribunal.[3][5] The tribunal's report, and Minhinnick's subsequent submissions to the government, were factors in the development of the Resource Management Act 1991.[5] She represented her iwi at the United Nations Human Rights Council in 1988,[3] and invited a United Nations special rapporteur to Tāhuna Marae.[5] She also sat on the Auckland Regional Council.[5]

In the 2013 Queen's Birthday Honours, Minhinnick was appointed a Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Māori and conservation.[6] Her investiture was at Government House in Wellington on 5 September 2013.[7]

Minhinnick died on 15 June 2017, and her tangihanga (a traditional Māori funeral rite) was held at Tāhuna Marae.[3]


  1. "Death search: registration number 2017/15837". Births, deaths and marriages online. Department of Internal Affairs. Retrieved 5 September 2019.
  2. Polley, Natalie (2 June 2013). "Dame Nganeko's proudest feat is her family". Retrieved 9 July 2017.
  3. Boynton, John (19 June 2017). "Tangi for pioneering Ngati Te Ata leader being held at Tahuna Marae in Waiuku". Waikato Times. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
  4. "Rangatahi weekend". Te Ao Hou (68): 38–39. 1970. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
  5. Collins, Simon (16 June 2017). "Manukau Harbour claimant Dame Nganeko Minhinnick dies". New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
  6. "Queen's Birthday honours list 2013". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. 3 June 2013. Retrieved 8 July 2017.
  7. "Celebration for Dame Nganeko Minihinnick". Waatea News. 5 September 2013. Retrieved 9 July 2017.
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