But the apology comes after years of calls from the a brave group of teenage Polynesians, called the Pacific Panthers, who got together at the time to fight the injustices they were experiencing.
So what was it like growing up at as a Pacific person at that time?
“I think [it was] horrific for the children and for the parents to be attacked like that at that time of the morning, that time of the night with no warning,” Ness said.
“I would liken it to what happened to the Jewish people in the Nazi era, yeah, it’s like that. So here in New Zealand, and we’re living like that, it reminds me also of what it would be like in South Africa during the apartheid era because we’ve seen a lot of the coverage from what happened there.”
Comparing the deportation of illegal overstayers to the Holocaust is at best highly insensitive and at worst trivialising genocide.
Norm Kirk may not have been a great Prime Minister, but we can all agree that comparing him to Hitler is ludicrous.