Topic: Politics

Far North District contemplates name change

By Dean Nathan
  • Northland

Perhaps it's time to change the name of the Far North District Council. It's an idea that's been floated by the deputy mayor of that district Tania McInnes.  Today Te Kāea hit the streets up north to gauge public perspective on her idea.

She's the deputy mayor of the largest district in the North Island and she has floated the idea that perhaps the time is nigh to change the name of the council.

Tania McInnes, (Deputy Mayor) says, “We've got 42 communities, there’s a number of rohe. How is it you know? We've got the Bay of Islands. The Hokianga and we've got the real Far North as it’s very passionately owned by therein. You know does that capture who we are?”

Valda Tahana, (Ngāti Tautahi) says, “Yeah but I think they need to start looking at our streets and our people people first. If you want to change it for a Māori kaupapa, you've got to check out the people and see what the need is first.”  

It's a name that was given to this region by the Local Government Commission in 1989.  Today, it seems the public in the mid-north around Kaikohe, are open to talking about it.

Phillip Brajkovich says, “I don't know!  Why would we change it.”

Roger Milner says, “Te Hiku sounds a bit like Kaitaia and the Hokianga is Hokianga and you need something to encompass the whole area. Why not call it the Kaikohe Council cos I've been here a long time now and I'm very passionate for Kaikohe or Kaikohekohe, that's what it should be.”

From Cape Reinga to the Hokianga, across the Bay of Islands down to the dusty roads inland of Whangārei. Tania McInnes has been working alongside a group known as Te Manawatōpū, to come up with a name that captures the vision for the future of the district.

McInnes says, “The vision is he whenua rangatira, a district of sustainable prosperity and wellbeing. So how do we capture that vision and champion it and buy into it? That in 2050 we have a district that is prosperous and blossoming and people celebrate who they are and are respected for who they are.”

Bill Ineson says, “Well I think it’s not bad as it is, as long as they do what we want them to do.”

Time will tell if we see results from this issue.