Syd Jackson: A Leader in Maori Politics

1. Syd Jackson in Maori Politics of New Zealand

Syd Jackson was one of the most important leaders in Maori politics of New Zealand. He was born in 1939 and passed away in 2007. He was a true warrior of Maori politics and fought for Maori rights throughout his life.

2. Jackson’s fights for Maori rights

Jackson was a firm believer in the Treaty of Waitangi and fought for the equal rights of all Maori people. He was one of the founders of the Ngati Whatua o Orakei Maori Trust Board, which fought for the return of ancestral lands to the Ngati Whatua people. He also worked tirelessly to improve conditions for workers in New Zealand, both Maori and non-Maori.

3. Jackson’s militia training in South Africa

In the 1970s, Jackson travelled to South Africa to train with the Umkhonto we Sizwe, the military wing of the African National Congress (ANC). This experience would later prove invaluable when he returned to New Zealand and founded the Maori Liberation Front (MLF), a militant group that fought for Maori rights. The MLF quickly became one of the most feared terrorist organizations in New Zealand, carrying out a series of bombings and bank robberies.

4. Jackson’s work with the Maori Liberation Front

Although he later disavowed violence, Jackson continued to work with the MLF until it was dissolved in 1980. He then turned his attention to working within the Labour Party to improve conditions for Maori people. In 1985, he was appointed as a Ministerial Advisor on Treaty of Waitangi Affairs, a position he held until 1987.

5. Jackson’s thoughts on Maori capitalism and identity politics

In recent years, there has been a revival of interest in Jackson’s thoughts on Maori capitalism and identity politics. In an interview with Radio New Zealand in 2006, Jackson stated that he believed that manyMaori people had lost their way due to “the success of capitalism”. He went on to say that “the West has taken over our minds”, and that “we have to get back to our roots”.

6. Jackson’s legacy

Syd Jackson was an outstanding leader who dedicated his life to fighting for the rights of all Maori people. His legacy continues to inspire those who follow in his footsteps today.


Syd Jackson was a prominent Maori politician in New Zealand who worked tirelessly to improve conditions for his people.

He was instrumental in the development of the Maori political party, Mana Motuhake, and campaigned on a number of key issues affecting Maori people, such as land rights and economic development.

Jackson's work as an MP helped to bring about positive changes for Maori people in New Zealand, including improved access to education and health care.

He also made significant contributions to race relations in New Zealand, helping to foster greater understanding and respect between Maori and non-Maori people.

While Jackson's career as a politician had many positive outcomes for the Maori people he represented, it is important to note that not all of his actions were universally popular among his constituents.

Nevertheless, Syd Jackson remains an important figure in New Zealand history, and his example provides valuable lessons about effective political advocacy for indigenous rights.

What was Syd Jackson's role in Maori politics in New Zealand?