'He didn't discover anything': Maori village bans Endeavour replica

Maori groups in far north New Zealand have banned a replica of Captain Cook's vessel Endeavour from docking for a historical commemoration.

By NITV News

A replica of British explorer James Cook's vessel Endeavour has been banned from docking at a village in New Zealand's far north district after local Maori groups objected to the visit.

The vessel is part of the "Tuia 250 Voyage," a series of events in October to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the first encounter between the indigenous Maori people and European colonists.

"He [Cook] was a barbarian. Wherever he went, like most people of the time of imperial expansion, there were murders, there were abductions, there were rapes, and just a lot of bad outcomes for the Indigenous people," Anahera Herbert-Graves, the head of the local tribe Ngati Kahu, told Radio New Zealand on Tuesday.

"He didn't discover anything down here, and we object to Tuia 250 using euphemisms like 'encounters' and 'meetings' to disguise what were actually invasions," she said.

Tamsin Evans, deputy chief of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, said the government acknowledged that in the past the recording and teaching of New Zealand's history had been unbalanced.

She said that Tuia 250 was an opportunity to take a richer, more robust and honest look at New Zealand's history, adding that they "aim to balance the story of the first encounters."

The Endeavour replica will be accompanied by three traditional waka hourua (double-hulled canoes) on its two-month tour around New Zealand.

"We want to empower communities to share all the origin stories of their regions, giving voice to seldom-heard accounts of our past - both painful and remarkable," Evans said.

Source: NITV

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