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Pasifika Finally Recognised At Rugby's Board Level - NZR Pasifika Advisory Group (Tausoa Fa’atasi)

The NZ Rugby Pasifika Advisory Group (Tausoa Fa’atasi) acknowledged a monumental day for Pasifika in Rugby, now formally recognised at a board level after the outcome of the NZR Special General Meeting on Thursday.

Co-Chair of the Advisory Group Pauline Luyten says, “The adoption of Proposal Two explicitly secures a Pasifika voice at the NZR decision-making table.”

“This is not status quo, this is modernisation of the board, and will positively impact the future of Pasifika players, families, and communities. We did not see Pasifika strongly enough in Proposal One.”

Co-Chair Tauanu’u Nick Bakulich acknowledged the strong support and collaboration with representatives of the Provincial Unions.

“We supported Proposal Two, because it is an independent model of governance that provides genuine and meaningful pathways for Pasifika from grass roots to the NZR board and recognises the significant contribution of Pasifika to the game.”

Luyten said, “many of our Pasifika players and governance experts were born from the country’s rugby community - so it is only right that community remains at the heart of the game.”

“When you start in New Zealand rugby, you put on the club jersey, or you volunteer.”

Bakulich says, “we’ve been fighting for this for a long time, and we’d like to acknowledge the pioneering contributions of former NZR President Tuifa'asisina Sir Bryan Williams and former NZR Board Member La'auli Sir Michael Jones, who continue to elevate Pasifika aspirations in rugby.

“We’d also like to thank the Pacific Community and its supporters, who provided useful strategic help and prayerful support during the past few months.”

Luyten emphasised the importance of everyone fully accepting and supporting the outcome of the SGM.

“We need to all move forward together to ensure the future success and sustainability of rugby in Aotearoa.”

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