The woman behind a petition to strip Sir Bob Jones of his knighthood is standing her ground, despite the threat of being sued by the property magnate.

The petition started by film-maker Renae Maihi was a response to a column Sir Bob wrote about starting a day about British appreciation to replace Waitangi Day.

A column Maihi called "a vile racist rant".

In a statement, Maihi told Fairfax she would not be taking down the petition, which had received more than 49,700 signatures by 5.40pm today.

Advertisement

"People like Bob Jones need to understand that the privilege they have in society also comes with a responsibility, and at a bare minimum that includes not writing flagrant hate speech in the media," the statement reads.

Just yesterday she wrote on her Facebook page that she welcomed further support.

"Support welcome, I'll need it - clearly he's one of the wealthiest men in this country and I am not," the post reads.

"I will always stand up for the mana of our children."

A later update on the Facebook page showed she had been offered assistance from lawyers.

Sir Bob told One News earlier this week that the column was a "p*sstake" and that he took exception to it being called hate speech.

"I won't sue her for a lot because that would seem like I'm bullying her," he said.

Sir Bob's column orginially ran in the National Business Review on February 2, however the article was later removed from the publication's website.

It included the passages: "I have in mind a public holiday where Maori bring us breakfast in bed or weed our gardens, wash and polish our cars and so on, out of gratitude for existing.

"Maori Appreciation Day in which Maori tangibly express their gratitude for existing thanks to European immigration, by a day's voluntarily labour for non-Maori folk, would be an excellent initiative for the new government."

Sir Bob is yet to respond to Herald requests for comment.