Today's Cabinet meeting will be delayed while Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters and a delegation of ministers and MPs attend the tangi of former Labour Cabinet minister Koro Wētere.

Wētere, 83, was Minister of Māori Affairs from 1984 to 1990 in the Labour government and played a key role in te reo Māori being recognised as an official language and in the resolution of the Māori fisheries settlement.

He died in Te Kuiti Hospital on Saturday.

Peters and the other MPs were welcomed on to Turangawaewae Marae at Ngaruawahia this morning.


Shane Jones, Kelvin Davis, Nanaia Mahuta, Willie Jackson and Louisa Wall were among the estimated 100 mourners gathered at the tangi.

Wētere will lie in state at Turangawaewae until Wednesday then will be interred near the family farm south of Te Kuiti.