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Governor-General's message

As some organisers of Anzac Day events have indicated that they would like to read out a message from the Prime Minister or the Governor-General, here is the Anzac Day 2016 message from the former Governor-General, Lt Gen the Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae.

We will publish the 2017 message shortly before Anzac Day 2017.

The Prime Minister's message is here.

Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, GNZM, QSO Governor-General of New Zealand's 2016 Anzac Day message

On this day one hundred years ago, New Zealanders first gathered together to honour their loved ones who had perished at Gallipoli.

Since then, Anzac Day has become the focal point for New Zealanders and Australians to acknowledge the service and sacrifice of all involved in military conflict.

During this period of the First World War Centenary, we pay particulartribute to the contribution made by New Zealanders on the Western Front, where our soldiers encountered industrialised modern warfare in its full, devastating form. It was here that we suffered the greatest loss of life, with more than 12,000 New Zealanders killed between 1916 and the end of the War.

Over the course of 1916 New Zealanders exemplified the Anzac spirit of comradeship, courage and compassion –  whether it be on HMS New Zealand in the Battle of Jutland, with the New Zealand Mounted Rifles in the Middle East,  the New Zealand Tunnelling Company in France, or with the New Zealand Division in the Battle of the Somme.

The qualities that defined our Anzacs are qualities for all New Zealanders to aspire to.

The increasing numbers of 21st century New Zealanders attending Anzac Day services reflect our deep appreciation of both the sacrifice of our forebears, and the commitment of our current active service personnel.

This year also marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services’ Association. Formed in 1916 by returning Anzacs, the RSA continues to provide support to our veterans, our service men and women and their families, and is an integral part of communities nationwide.

These centenary commemorations connect past with present, action with remembrance. As we pause to honour those who have served their country over this past century, we also honour those who serve on our behalf today.

Ka maumahara tonu tātou ki a rātou – we will remember them.

Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, GNZM, QSO Governor-General of New Zealand