14 Aug 2015

Sonny Tau eyes up Ngapuhi leader role

9:27 pm on 14 August 2015

The former chairperson of Ngāpuhi, Sonny Tau, is still eyeing up a leadership position in the iwi after stepping aside in July over the kererū incident.

The Ngāpuhi settlement entity, the Tūhoronuku Independent Mandated Authority, opened nominations today for the election of a new chair and deputy.

Three people are vying for the top seat, which Sam Napia has been keeping warm since July when Mr Tau stepped down.

Mr Tau is due to appear in court charged with possession of protected kererū (wood pigeons) four days after the Tūhoronuku elections.

At today's board meeting in Paihia, Sam Napia, Sonny Tau and Hone Sadler were nominated for the role of chair.

Moana Tuwhare, Kara George and Hone Sadler were nominated for the deputy position.

The Ngāpuhi settlement authority was warned by the Government in February to strengthen its mandate, after many of the more than 100 hapū that make up the iwi boycotted its first elections.

The tribe has recently begun Treaty negotiations and a Council of Elders that wants to be the go-to group for tribal issues has been established.

Tūhoronuku's acting chair, Mr Napia, sayid the group supports the council.

Elections for the two roles are on 11 September.

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