A viral video of a group of British nurses dancing and chanting against Covid-19 was deleted from Twitter after complaints that it amounted to mockery of a sacred tradition of the Maori natives of New Zealand.
Over 600,000 people viewed the video, posted on Saturday by nurses working at Tavistock Hospital in Devon, England. It shows them attempting to do a ‘Ka Mate’ haka while wearing headbands and face paint.
“This is the message we wish to affirm, you’ll never beat us – we hate you, you germ,” one of the nurses can be seen chanting. “Together we’ll triumph with the strength from within. Mankind will destroy you, mankind will win.”
The performance was “absolutely offensive and degrading,” Maori cultural adviser Karaitiana Taiuru told New Zealand outlet Newshub. “It is distasteful and disrespectful to the descendants of Ngati Toa and to all Maori.”