PSA mourns loss of much loved Kaumātua

Kua hinga te tōtara i te wao tapu nui a Tāne. The tōtara has fallen in Tāne’s great forest.

Te hunga kua mene ki te pō.

It is with great sadness that we let you know that our PSA Kaumātua Kiwhare Mihaka has passed away. Our thoughts, prayers and aroha go out to his whānau at this time of pouritanga.

Matua Kiwhare Mihaka has been a long-time unionist who has dedicated his service to the Public Service Association and the NZ Council of Trade Unions over many years.

Kiwhare was the PSA Kaumātua since 1986, and Kaumātua for the Council of Trade Unions since 2008, before stepping down from his duties earlier this year.

He led and guided the PSA Rūnanga, Te Rūnanga o Ngā Toa Āwhina, by providing support and advice particularly for Māori across our union.

He always enjoyed seeing Māori delegates thrive in their roles across our Māori governance structures and has supported the Māori staff (Te Whānau Atawhai) in their different roles.

Kiwhare was a driving force behind choosing many Te Reo Māori terms used by the PSA, including the Māori name for the union, Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi. "The name captures the concept of skilled people coming together to create good conditions and ways of working," he explained at the time.

At the CTU he was involved in the development of He Takawaenga, a relationship document between the CTU and its Rūnanga, which outlined treaty expectations.

This is a huge loss for the PSA and its members, and the wider union movement. We remember his manaakitanga and aroha.

Nō reira, moe mai rā e te Rangatira, takoto mai i to waka wairua I ngā takotoranga o ngā mātua tupuna. Haere, haere, haere atu rā.

I roto i te manaakitanga