Linda Munn Running for Tauranga City Council
Well-known Maori artist, Linda Munn, is standing for one of four Councillor-at-large seats in the Tauranga electorate, in what is shaping up to be a wholesale overhaul of City Council.
Linda, a prolific artist, is well-known as one of the creators of the now ubiquitous Tino Rangatiratanga flag, and for having her facial moko emblazoned on a wall in Los Angeles by Tauranga artist Owen Dippie, and is also a longtime supporter of Tauranga Women's Refuge.
Linda is running on 3 main campaign pillars:
People – community, whanau, tamariki, women and the homeless
Land – whenua, moana, housing and the environment
Voice – integrity, ethics and transparency in council, and advocacy for the disenfranchised
“I always talk about 'people' and 'land' together, because you cannot focus on one without the other: you have to nurture both. If you have shelter, food and running water, you have everything you need. But you can't have that without a place, and without taking care of the environment”
“One of the most profound things that made me want to run for council, was coming out of Pak 'n' Save on Cameron Rd, and there was an elderly gentleman on the ground, with a cardboard sign, begging for help; the look in his eyes, of complete desperation and no hope. I thought to myself, “When did this become normal for Tauranga? I am so sick of this shit, I've got to do something”
A staunch and selfless pragmatist, Linda cites the need for a culture change in Tauranga City Council, and that this cannot happen without a clean out of the entrenched personalities and their methods. She vows to be the 'conscience' of Council, always asking questions of why, where and how ratepayers' money is being spent, and reminding council who they are actually working for.
Particularly over the last three years, TCC has come under withering criticism for a raft of uncompleted projects, rampant spending, institutional incompetence - notably the Bella Vista Homes debacle that cost ratepayers a $6.7 million bailout - and a total lack of both transparency and vision. Despite this, incumbent Mayor Greg Brownless, and Deputy Mayor Kelvin Clout, continue to give themselves a generous 'pass' mark, and are both optimistically seeking re-election in 2019.
Linda has a small handful of volunteers in her team, and is running a mainly online-based campaign, for reasons of both frugality and effectiveness. All content drives people to use the hashtag #oneformunn. Eschewing the outdated use of roadside hoardings, Linda jokes “If I put this face on a sign, with the Tino flag, it would probably get pinched, and then they'd probably have the cheek to bring it back and ask me to sign it”.
Facebook, Instagram and Twitter: @oneformunn