I have been a Māori Warden for the past 20 years serving in Ruapehu and in Whanganui, warranted for the last 6 years. I am 48 years old.
My History as a Māori Warden
I was introduced to the Māori Wardens by my grandfather, Samuel Paeumu Arahanga, whō was an original founding Māori Warden, number 11 in fact.
My grandfather had 20 children, one of which was my mother — Stella Te Aroha A rahanga. My mother was a stay at home mother as there were 13 of us, she didn’t have much choice.
My Father was the chairperson of the Ruapehu Māori Committee, and as part of that role, he took up the cause of the Wardens.
The two of my siblings are living overseas, however 10 of us remain in New Zealand, of that two of us are Wardens.
I grew up exposed to a whānau committed to Wātene principles. As a young girl, I was raised understanding the importance of looking after our communities in the way you would like tō be looked after yourself. Years ago, that meant just working with. our local Māori, but now it involves every aspect of life.
I heard stories about what my koro did as a Warden, and in his time, they were the Māori police. They worked with Māori, for Māori and in accordance with Māori codes of conduct.
Read full Affidavit: 7. 140221 Sworn Affidavit of Billie Mills