Explanation of Tohu


The shape is a stylized version of the tapatoru or triangle – regarded as the most balanced and structurally strongest design created by strength through unity.

It is also symbolic of the kurutao – the “V” shaped military formation that Māori warriors formed when confronting the enemy – again signifying strength through unity.

The kōwhaiwhai design represents the unified base that is Te Arawa whānui.

The eight black triangles represent and acknowledge the individuality of Ngā Waru Pūmanawa o Te Arawa – the eight beating hearts of Te Arawa which in turn represent the main hapū of Te Arawa.

They also depict niho or teeth that can be translated as the “biting edge” leadership for Te Arawa.

The 3 waves signifies the relationship with the lakes.

Also the 3 tupuna rohe that make up the new Lakes Trust structure and not forgetting our “links” with the past.

And finally a jet stream in the wake of Te Arawa progress.

When you combine these elements the tohu represents the Te Arawa people united by the Te Arawa lakes settlement moving forward together with purpose and confidence.