To: Tracey Martin, Minister of Internal Affairs

Honour Te Tiriti: #ChangeTheOath

Honour Te Tiriti: #ChangeTheOath

We call on Hon Tracey Martin, Minister of Internal Affairs, to change the oath of citizenship to the following:

"I swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Tangata Whenua and the Crown, according to law, that I will honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi, and faithfully observe the laws of New Zealand and fulfil my duties as a New Zealand citizen."

Why is this important?

The oath of allegiance, taken by all new citizens, is an important statement on what it means to be a citizen of Aotearoa. Te Tiriti o Waitangi is the nation's founding document, yet the current oath only acknowledges one Treaty partner, the Crown (for more information see There is a need for the oath to acknowledge both Māori and the Crown, and to reflect that honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi is the responsibility of all citizens of Aotearoa.

Changing the oath to include a statement on honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi would:
- Recognise Te Tiriti o Waitangi as the founding document of the Nation
- Honour both Treaty partners in citizenship ceremonies
- Make it clear that honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi is the responsibility of all citizens of Aotearoa
- Encourage new citizens to learn about Te Tiriti o Waitangi and their relationships with tangata whenua
- Be one step towards achieving an approach to immigration that recognises Māori rights, responsibilities, and aspirations

'Change the Oath' is a group of Māori and migrants of colour standing in solidarity. The group includes (in alphabetical order) Faisal Al-Asaad, Tahu Kukutai, Ricardo Menéndez March, Pania Newton, Aaryn Marsh Niuapu, Arama Rata, and Julie Zhu.

Reasons for signing

  • Because the Treaty of Waitangi is an integral part of New Zealand's constitution, which arguably means more to the average New Zealand than Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second who is referenced in our current version of the citzenship Oath. The Treaty was signed by two parties and only one is recognised in the current version of the oath. Therefore this injustice needs to be adressed
  • When I took my oath I swore aliegence to Te Tiriti O Waitangi. I was so surprised it was not in there. I also sang a Waiata. It took me 20 years as I did not want to swear aliegence to a sovereign who imprisoned my grandfather for fighting for Irish freedom. It is not culturally sensitive for many. I love nz and wanted to swear an oath to what it stands for. Not some overseas colonizer
  • Te Tiriti is a immigration document for Pākehā and tauiwi. It's time we acknowledged it as such.


2018-02-27 16:47:58 +1300

500 signatures reached

2018-02-06 19:10:43 +1300

100 signatures reached

2018-02-06 15:03:52 +1300

50 signatures reached

2018-02-06 13:07:28 +1300

25 signatures reached

2018-02-06 12:07:44 +1300

10 signatures reached