In 2014, the then Minister of Education Hekia Parata (who also chairs the Ngārimu VC and 28th (Māori) Battalion Memorial Scholarships board) and then Minister of Arts, Culture and Heritage Christopher Finlayson agreed on the importance of urgently documenting the histories of A, B and D Companies of the 28th Māori Battalion, to complement Nga Tama Toa, the history C Company published in 2008. These histories will be seminal and highly valuable resources for veterans and their families, and provide historical and educational information for the wider New Zealand community. They will commemorate the Battalion’s service to Māoridom and the nation, and inform national memory. The respective Ministries will work in partnership to bring these projects to fruition.
Copies of Nga Tama Toa by Dr Monty Soutar are available for purchase from Bateman Publishing.
In August 2015, an MOU between the Ministry for Culture and Heritage and the 28th Māori Battalion B Company History Trust concerning a history of the Battalion’s B Company in the Second World War was signed. Sir Wira Gardiner was contracted to write the history. The soldiers of B Company, nicknamed 'The Penny Divers', came mainly from Te Arawa and the Mātaatua tribes but also included men from the Hauraki district. They fought in more engagements and received more decorations than any other company of the Māori Battalion. Sir Wira Gardiner's history Ake Ake Kia Kaha E! Forever Brave! was launched at Te Papaiouru Marae at Ohinemutu, Rotorua on 06 April 2019.
Cover of Ake Ake Kia Kaha E! which is available for purchase from Bateman Publishing.
Work on the A and D Company histories is currently being proposed in consultation with their respective history trusts.
Updated on 11th April 2019