Dame Naida Glavish

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Dame Naida Glavish, DNZM JP

Ngāti Whātua

Dame Rangimārie Naida Glavish was working as a telephone tolls operator in 1984 when she was reprimanded by her supervisors for using the greeting "Kia ora" when answering the telephone. She refused to back down and her case ignited national debate about the place of te reo Māori in New Zealand several years before it was finally recognised as an official language.

Glavish became known as "the kia ora lady" and has continued to be a champion of te reo Māori all her life. She became involved in politics and was President of the Māori Party from 2013 – 2016. In 2017, she was made a Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her work in the health sector championing appropriate cultural support for Māori patients in the Auckland health system.   

Listen to an interview with her, then known as Naida Povey, in this news item from Morning Report in 1984 when the row over "Kia ora" first hit the headlines.

Find out more about Dame Naida Glavish:

Listen to Dame Naida Glavish on Morning Report some 30 years later, in a bilingual interview with host Guyon Espiner to mark Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori. 

Read an interview with Dame Naida Glavish on E-Tangata

Image: Supplied – courtesy RNZ.

Catalogue Reference 27390

Year 1984

Credits

Presenter: Geoff Robinson,
Reporter: Carol Greensmith, Morning Report, RNZ National

Excerpt: 00:02:06

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