“We can be the nation that discovers the cure”: NZ PM Jacinta Ardern delivers powerful speech at Christchurch remembrance service

Thousands of New Zealanders have gathered in Hagley Park this morning, to remember those who were lost in the Christchurch terror attacks two weeks ago.

They were joined by delegates from 59 countries around the world, including Heads of State from the Pacific Community.

The service was cooperatively led by the New Zealand Government, local iwi Ngāi Tahu, the Muslim community and the City of Christchurch.


The names of the 50 people killed were read out by various members of New Zealand’s Muslim community during the service.

There were various musical performances from British singer Yusuf Islam AKA Cat Stevens, and local musicians Marlon Williams and Hollie Smith.

Prime Minister Jacinta Ardern addressed the crowd, calling for today to be a day of memory, as well as a “responsibility to be the place that we wish to be.”

“A place that is diverse, that is welcoming, that is kind and compassionate.

“Those values represent the very best of us.

“But even the ugliest of viruses can exists in places that they are not welcome.

“Racism exists, but it is not welcome here.

“An assault on the freedom of anyone of us who practises their faith or religion is not welcome here.

“Violence and extremism in all its forms is not welcome here.

“And over the last two weeks, we have shown that, you have shown that in your actions

“From the thousands at vigils, to the 95-year-old man who took four buses to attend a rally because he couldn’t sleep from the sadness of seeing the hurt and suffering of others.

“Our challenge now, is to make the very best of us a daily reality.

“Because we are not immune to the viruses of hate, of fear, of other, we never have been.

“But we can be the nation that discovers the cure,” Ms Ardern said.

The memorial service also included speeches from Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel, Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy and Muslim leaders Shaggaf Khan and Mustafa Farouk.