Leon Hawea looks to represent Ikaroa Rawhiti

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mana333From what we’ve gathered there are two interesting contenders going head to head for the Mana Movement nomination. Leon Hawea is another great option to lead the people of Ikaroa Rawhiti.

Though less well-known but not any less qualified Leon’s passion lies in working with his people. He is currentlyDistrict Manager at Kohanga National Trust and has held positions as Iwi Liaison Officer for the Hastings District Council.

Mr Hawea resigned from his job at the Council in 2005 after significant concerns regarding cultural safety when it came to race relations. According to a Hawke’s Bay Today article the district’s Pacific Island community boycotted a cultural festival after the council decided to not continue to fund the Council’s Pacific Island liaison officer after central govt funding was withdrawn.

Mr Hawea has shown himself to be a staunch supporter of Maori rights, when he left the council he tabled a strongly worded report saying:

We may have approached the time to exercise our own rights as tangata whenua, as mana whenua, as first nations peoples, as indigenous peoples of this country, the right given to us from our ancestors,” the report said.

Debate and discussion is needed relating to our issues with council and, no matter where these issues take us and our stance, we must remember that we will always endure for we are from the seeds that were sewn in that very spiritual place known as Rangitea.”

Mr Hawea was among Maori threatening to occupy some of Te Aute College’s land to prevent it from being sold.

Mr Hawea affiliates to Rongomaiwahine, Ngai Te Whatuiapiti and Ngati Kahungunu.

Born in Hastings, Mr Hawea comes from a teaching background.

President of MANA, Annette Sykes released the following statement:

“I am humbled that two such outstanding nominees have chosen to contest the MANA candidacy. Te Hamua Nikora (Ngati Porou, Te Whakatohea, Ngai Tai, Ngati Konohi and Waikato) has enjoyed an illustrious career in Maori broadcasting and is most well-known as the iconic presenter for the Maori programmes Pukana, Kai Time on the Road and Homai Te Pakipaki. Leon Hawea (Ngati Kahungunu, Te Whatuiapiti and Rongomaiwahine) has spent his lifetime as an advocate for his people in such roles as the Iwi Liaison Officer for the Hastings District Council and in his current employment as the District Manager for Te Kohanga Reo.

Selection Committee Details

  • Selection hui have been organised in Gisborne (Saturday 18th May), Hastings (Sunday 19th May) and Wainuiomata (Monday 20th May) and the announcement of the successful candidate will be made on Thursday 23rd May.

Candidate nominations must be with the Electoral Commission by midday on June 5.

 

 

 

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