Ngata, Apirana Turupa

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Sir Apirana Turupa Ngata

Born at Te Araroa, East Cape, and educated at Te Aute College and Canterbury College, Apirana Ngata rose to become a talented politician and scholar.

The first Maori to graduate from a New Zealand university college and one of the first of any race to gain a BA and LLB, he was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in 1897 but was more interested in politics, culminating in his election to Parliament in 1905 where he remained for another 38 years.

Ngata held the native affairs portfolio in three administrations, devoting himself to Maori resettlement on the land and to research into Maori tribal history.