Pita Sharples celebrated at Government House
We've already been calling him Sir Pita for a few months now, but Pita Sharples will be among those celebrating their new titles at Government House this week.
The former Maori Party co-leader will be one of the familiar names from recent Queen's Birthday honours that will be recognised at a Governor-General's investiture ceremony in Auckland today.
Talking to NZ Newswire after receiving his knighthood, Sir Pita said he had accepted the title for his iwi.
"I got a CBE once, I wanted to turn that down and my iwi said `we put you up for this, you're part of the iwi and you have to accept it'," he said.
"That's why it's important to accept these jolly things - I know the iwi put me up, so did the Maori Party."
He said he wanted people to recognise his knighthood as an acknowledgement of "the stances I've taken for Maori, for New Zealand, in race relations".
Governor-General Sir Jerry Mateparae will present about 60 honours recipients from various walks of life with their insignias or medals, in four ceremonies throughout the week.
Other noted recipients will include artist Max Gimblett, UN representative Sir Jim McLay, Foreign Minister Murray McCully and Maori language innovator Tawhiri Williams.