Story: Ngā pakanga ki tāwāhi – Māori and overseas wars

Jerry Mateparae, chief of defence force, 2006

Jerry Mateparae, chief of defence force, 2006

Lieutenant General Jerry Mateparae wears a traditional kākahu (cloak) at Trentham Army Camp on 1 May 2006, the day he was appointed chief of defence force. Mateparae, of Ngāti Tūwharetoa and Ngāti Kahungunu, joined the army as a private in 1972, and served in the infantry and the Special Air Service (SAS). Mateparae rose through the ranks to become a lieutenant general, and in 1998 commanded the Truce Monitoring Group on Bougainville. From 1999 to 2001 he was joint commander of the New Zealand forces in East Timor. In 2002 Mateparae was promoted to chief of army and in 2006 he became chief of defence force. After a short stint in 2011 as head of the Government Communications Security Bureau, Mateparae was appointed governor-general, a role he held until 2016.

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Royal New Zealand Air Force

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How to cite this page:

Monty Soutar, 'Ngā pakanga ki tāwāhi – Māori and overseas wars - Overseas service after 1945', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 1 December 2023)

Story by Monty Soutar, published 20 Jun 2012, updated 1 May 2016