Sunday, May 19, 2024

Hamilton councillor resignation triggers by-election

Kirikiriroa Maaori Ward Councillor, Melaina Huaki, has resigned from her position on Hamilton City Council, citing health reasons.

Councillor Melaina (pictured) was elected as one of Hamilton’s inaugural Kirikiriroa Maaori Ward Councillors in the 2022 elections.

“My decision to resign was not taken lightly. It has been a huge privilege to represent Kirikiriroa as one of our city’s first Maaori Ward councillors,” she said in a statement.

“I worked with staff to assess my options, but I need to prioritise my health at this time. This was the right thing to do for me, my whaanau and the city. I look forward to seeing who our Kirikiriroa Ward voters elect to take on this great responsibility.”

Hamilton Mayor, Paula Southgate thanked Councillor Huaki for her contribution to Council and the city.

“I’m saddened to see Melaina leave Council. She brought a lot of passion and a fresh perspective to the Council table, ensuring the unique perspectives of tangata whenua were well-represented in our decision-making processes,” the Mayor said.

“I also thank Melaina for her strong support of the Tuia Maaori leadership mentoring programme, under the Mayor’s Taskforce for Jobs, and her dedicated mentoring of rangitahi during her tenure. I have no doubt she has made a positive impact on the lives of those she mentored.

“I fully support that she is putting her health and whaanau first, and wish her all the very best.”

A by-election will be held for Councillor Huaki’s Kirikiriroa Maaori Ward seat, with the timing to be confirmed at an upcoming Council meeting.

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