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Manukau City Council Gets New Pacific Voice

04 May 2006

Manukau City Council Gets New Pacific Voice

Manukau City Council’s newly elected Pacific Island Advisory Committee (PIAC) is looking forward to being Manukau’s new Pacific voice for the next three years.

At the recent PIAC elections, 10 of the 14 elected members representing Tonga, Niue, Cook Islands, Samoa, Fiji, and Tokelau were first-time committee members.

PIAC Coordinator Faama Viliamu says this is a reflection of the increasing participation by Pacific peoples in civic and community activities – one of the key objectives of PIAC.

“Having new members on board ensures that Council is continuing to develop new relationships with our Pacific communities and hear new perspectives. At the same time we’re building on our established networks and ensuring that PIAC’s knowledge base is not lost with the help of long standing members such as Mrs Tupou Manapori and Mr Sione Liava’a, he says.

The Committee held its first monthly meeting on Thursday, 20 April and elected to Mrs Tupou Manapori as Chairperson and Dr 'Etuate Saafai as Deputy Chair.

The Pacific Island Advisory Committee, established in 1991, is a key link between Manukau City Council and the Pacific communities. It acts as a forum for voicing and raising any issues that concern Pacific peoples, as well as improving understanding of local government issues.

Mr Viliamu says it is a huge commitment for three years but given the makeup of Manukau City it is an important role.

77,550 Pacific peoples, (or 31% of all New Zealand's Pacific population) reside in Manukau City, making it the Pacific Island capital of New Zealand. Furthermore almost a third of Manukau's diverse population is made up of Pacific people.

PIAC Committee Members:

Cook Islands
Tupou Manapori
Anne Po-Wihongi
Teri Sofae

Samoa
Vui Vitale
Bridget Fa’amatuainu
Fia Turner-Tupou

Tonga
Dr ‘Etuate Saafi
Sione Liava’a
Makalita Kolo

Niue
Nogi Head
Louisa Lavakula
Siahi Sekene

Fiji
Joana Monolagi

Tokelau
Molly Foai

ENDS

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