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Thursday, December 3, 2015
Open Letter to OHA: Defund Nai Aupuni
By News Release @ 3:39 AM :: 6199 Views :: Akaka Bill, OHA

Aloha E OHA CEO Dr. Kamana'o Crabbe,      November 30, 2015

I and the following people named at the end of this letter petition that the Na’i Aupuni process be immediately DEFUNDED for the following reasons in bold. The names gathered are those in agreement with the reasons listed in this letter and in agreement with the copy-list (C) of organizations and individuals also visible at the end of this letter on a separate page.  We are a group of concerned Hawaiian Trust Beneficiaries and supportive community members that have come together to protest the Na’i Aupuni process currently taking place. All entities on the copy-list will be contacted via email first where available. The reasons here-in are compiled from sources such as: OHA website, personal contacts with other beneficiaries, social media posts, Congressional testimony, etc.

1. Trust Duties of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Compromised and Not Carried Out.

Your website claims: “OHA’s advocacy also calls for developing and shaping public policies that have broad implications for the Hawaiian community. OHA’s advocacy is reflected in its efforts to help ensure that laws are complied with at the local, state and federal levels. In addition, OHA’s advocacy requires working with communities to share information and build public support for Hawaiian issues.”

Na’i Aupuni is BEING FORCED on the Hawaiian community by OHA and the State of Hawaii. The reason is because the State of Hawaii Legislature passed ACT195 AND ACT77 and the legislators and congressmen decided against funding federal recognition, thus mandating OHA to fund it.

2. Self-determination initiatives such as ACT195 need to come from the people, not the government as expounded on below in regards to consent, political activity and self-determination. Funding should not have been expended for federal recognition without adequate education to the beneficiaries regarding EVERY TYPE of government relationship possible for the Hawaiian Nation.  Your website claims that you are required to work “with communities to share information and build public support”. Accordingly your duties have not been fulfilled as far these requirements and further funding of federal recognition efforts should be terminated.

Your website also claims: “OHA’s Compliance Enforcement Program is part of OHA’s Advocacy Line of Business.  The purpose of the program is to provide legal and policy compliance review, assessment and corrective action services to OHA’s top leadership, allowing the organization to take proactive steps when organizations interpret or implement laws in ways that may harm the Hawaiian community or may not be in its best interest.”

3. Kana’iolowalu is an utter failure.

The fact that Act77 was passed is evidence enough that Kana’iolowalu did not meet its objective after 2 years and the effort should have been tabled for discussion and education.

Likewise OHA is currently involved in a lawsuit against it because of the roll. The initial case was ruled in OHA’s favor, yet is now being appealed.

The roll is publicized on the Kana’iolowalu website as “Certified” yet there are reports of names on the roll of:

  • Loved ones deceased in years past. “…more than 600 persons” (Shane Pale)
  • People on the list who do not know what Na’i Aupuni is about
  • People who don’t want to be on it and forced to go through a dis-enrollment process
  • People with the incorrect address (or vice versa), incorrect names (sur names and first names, etc.).  Candidate Judy Moa, stated that her name was incorrect

4. NO Hawaiian National Consensus to support Na’i Aupuni or federal recognition.

WITHOUT CONSENT of all the beneficiaries OHA implemented Act 77 to increase the number of people on the commission roll. And now WITHOUT CONSENT of thousands of beneficiaries our personal information is being handled by non-OHA people. Why do those people have our names and addresses? How do we know our information will not be used in other ways or for financial gain such as opening lines of credit? Was there a background check or a kind of requirement process that the candidates went through that gives them the privilege to access the names and addresses of lahui on the Kana’iolowalu roll?

The Hawaiian community and Congress made their communication clear in the early 2000’s that they did not support the Akaka Bill, yet here we are 15 years later harassed to support Na’i Aupuni, a descendant of the Akaka Bill. Republicans Review published congressional dissent to the Akaka Bill such as “there is a key difference between the Hawaiian ‘‘tribe’’ recognized under H.R. 2314 and the tribes duly recognized through Treaty or Act of Congress: the former is not a tribe within the meaning of the Indian Commerce Clause of the Constitution (Article I, Section 8) because it does not share the historical and political relations of Indian tribes with Congress”. Our Kingdom of Hawaiian Islands history MATTERS in this context called Na’i Aupuni

5. Use of fear tactics on the Hawaiian community to support Na’i Aupuni

OHA’s Notice in Ka Wai Ola August 2013 issue states, “Native Hawaiians who choose not to be included on the official roll risk waving their right, and the right of their children and descendants to be legally and politically acknowledged as Native Hawaiians and to participate in a future convention to reorganize the Hawaiian nation (as described above), and as a result may also be excluded from rights of inclusion (citizenship), rights of participation (voting), and potential benefits that may come with citizenship (e.g. land use rights, monetary payments, scholarships, etc.). See page 35.”

Here is one documented result of this notice found on social media by Lei Niheu 11/13/2015: “Many Hawaiian organizations are federally funded or work for the federal government and my friend felt that she needed to vote in the Na’i Aupuni out of fear. One fear factor was Na’i Aupuni stated non participation in their process meant you were going to be excluded. Two, if she did not vote...fear of retaliation by her employer, a federally funded nonprofit Hawaiian organization. Working close proximity with federal government employees, she discovered she was not alone in this fear of retaliation especially so when the dialogue was about Na’i Aupuni.....just saying the motivating principles behind the choices people make in this case: the fear of exclusion among our Hawaiian race of the haves & have nots and the fear of retaliation from gainful employment in the federal system.”

The current Na’i Aupuni process for establishing a government to government relationship with the United States of America is losing support as more participants make new discoveries every day about the Kingdom of the Hawaiian Islands’ past history and Na’i Aupuni’s ultimate predecessor the Akaka Bill. Again, the Hawaiian community made their communication clear that they did not support the Akaka Bill, yet here we are 15 years later being told of RISKS for choosing NOT to support Na’i Aupuni or federal recognition, (a descendant of the Akaka Bill). This should not have been allowed! OHA is funding a process that is producing FEAR OF RETALIATION BY EMPLOYERS, making Hawaiians VOTE in Na’i Aupuni OUT OF FEAR.

6. Na’i Aupuni is a true political process under the guise of a Private process

OHA is entrusted with the matters of Hawaiian affairs for the entire Hawaiian population. Furthermore, as an agency of the State of Hawaii, it concludes that OHA activities are considered political by nature. In this letter the Hawaiian community is defined by the 2010 US Census as approximately 527,000 Hawaiians. Hawaiian national consensus has been eliminated. OHA is distributing trust funds to a private company to change the POLITICAL status of the Hawaiian Nation while under American military occupation. Many who have died and many more alive did not CONSENT to being put on a list to be used to politically change the status of Hawaiians from being a SOVEREIGN INDEPENDENT NATION to ASSIMILATED into the United States! It has been publicized that OHA has received legal advice regarding the political status of the Hawaiian Nation yet OHA chooses to be ignorant to it. Not all the trust beneficiaries gave CONSENT to be a part of this political process nor to use TRUST FUNDS for it.

Also under this reason is the above mentioned notice OHA printed in Ka Wai Ola August 2013 issue. The language of this notice is legal in nature with legal implications. For example, it uses words such as: risk, waiving, right, rights, legally, convention to reorganize, citizenship, voting, land use rights, monetary payments, and scholarships.  These words are traditionally used by American democracy in relation to government policy. This is a political not private process that is being implemented and funded, but because Judge Seabright rules Na’i Aupuni a private activity, your trust beneficiaries request that OHA please stop funding a process that employs fear tactics on the Hawaiian community.

7. Elections America Inc.’s performance of services are poor and should be terminated.

There are several supporting arguments for terminating Elections America Inc.’s funding and contract. We will find that all supporting arguments stem from lack of oversight.

a) Prior to elections candidate information was not accurate. (see: Hawaii Free Press articles:
http://www.hawaiifreepress.com/ArticlesMain/tabid/56/ID/16251/categoryId/42/Nai-Aupuni-Walter-Ritte-Scott-Parker-Still-on-Ballot-After-Quitting-Race.aspx ; and

Scott Parker withdrew his candidacy however, his name still appears on the election ballot.

Walter Ritte withdrew his candidacy however, his name still appears on the election ballot, despite the fact that he had a 40 minute press release and publically announced his withdrawal.

Katie Kamelamela applied as a Hawaii Island candidate yet was listed on the Na’i Aupuni website and in mailings to voters as an O’ahu candidate.

Pohaikauilani Nuuhiwa applied for an “Oahu seat in the ‘Aha—but her name does not appear on a copy of the print version of the Oahu ballot provided to Hawai’i Free Press by a voter nor does she appear on the online candidate list posted on the Na’i Aupuni website”

b) In the current stage of the Na’i Aupuni process (elections), Na’i Aupuni posted to their website that the requirement for those seeking to become delegates need to be nominated by ten (10) other eligible voters from any region. The website clearly communicates the requirement has not been met by several candidates. And due to time constraints those applicants were automatically accepted regardless of meeting the requirement. This calls into question the validity of the candidates to legally qualify because of putting false information (asterisks and nonsensical letters) on their applications instead of 10 names of eligible voters that nominated them. This is a HUGE oversight! It can be said that candidates for the position of delegate committed fraud on their application and Elections America Inc. and Na’i Aupuni are saying FRAUD is okay because they blanket approved candidacies.  The Na’i Aupuni website posted the following response despite questions of validity of candidates’ applications. It is quite comical to find Elections America Inc. and Na’i Aupuni’s attitude that “appropriateness of the candidates” (definition?) are left to the voters to make that decision without a process of validity or accountability put in place by them. Very questionable indeed!

“….The online application system was designed to not allow the applicant to complete the application unless all ten slots were filled in. There are a few of candidates who filled the ten slots by repeating names or with symbols and not with ten registered voters. Na‘i Aupuni decided to allow these applicants to maintain their status as candidates because they received an electronic notice from Election-America that their application was complete. Because they received this notice, and because Na‘i Aupuni was unable to inform all of them that their application was being revoked with enough time for them to attempt to correct their deficiency, Na‘i Aupuni decided to allow them to remain as candidates because once registrants received notice that their applications were completed, Na‘i Aupuni’s policy was to allow the voters to make the ultimate decision on the appropriateness of them as candidates.  Na‘i Aupuni also decided that these candidates would not be allowed to amend their applications after the September 15 deadline to insert registered voters”

c) Along the lines of lacking validity, with the advent of publishing the list of candidates, at least one person confessed to dropping out of the election when faced in competition with veteran politicians, OHA trustees, and presidents of large or historical Hawaiian organizations such as Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement and the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs. As reported in her press release announcing her withdrawal from candidacy, Judy Moa says, “This process is not forth right. It misleads our people to believing we can have self‐determination and self‐governance if we choose but eliminates our qualified voters by closing the voting opportunity where many are still uninformed because of the ambiguity and understanding of how to participate. This process further neglects to address the issues brought forth in the Apology Bill Public Law 105‐130 and is an effort to relinquish all of our assets in exchange for a better benefit to only the Hawaiian with 50% or more blood quantum, of which I am one, and cutting off our descendants that follow.”

d) With the publishing of the Kana’iolowalu financial records, Judy Moa “called out” 2 current candidates, Michelle Kauhane and Amy Kalili, who reflect conflicts of interests for having received monies to carry out the Na’i Aupuni process. Kauhane as the President and CEO for Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement as well as Kalili receiving $500,000 from Na’i Aupuni as Executive Director of Makauila, Inc.

e) The Na’i Aupuni website also states, “For the outside-of-Hawaii voters, the print ballot mistakenly lists some of the candidates twice. Thus, please vote only once for each candidate because only one vote per candidate from each voter will be counted. Election-American and Naʻi Aupuni apologize for this error.” Pictures of ballots such as described here by Na’i Aupuni, have appeared in social media with comments of how unprofessional that is for efforts of building a nation, an unstable foundation it is. 

In light of the above support stated. Please also terminate OHA’s funding to Na’i Aupuni’s contract with Elections America Inc. due to methods used lacking clear validity, fraudulent procedures and unprofessionalism as a business entity for such a historical event.

8. “NO free determination by a people” due to no Consensus (above).

According to the United Nations, in its Friendly Relations Declaration (1970) (Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and cooperation among States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations), adopted by consensus as UNGA Resolution 2625 (XXV) of 24 October 1970, the UNGA worked out the most authoritative and comprehensive formulation so far of the principle of self-determination.  According to this document ‘the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations’ embraces the right of all peoples ‘freely to determine, without external interference, their political status and to pursue their economic, social and cultural development’ as well as the duty of every State ‘to respect this right in accordance with the provisions of the Charter’ (Principle 5 Friendly Relations Declaration). It further added that ‘the establishment of a sovereign and independent State, the free association or integration with an independent State, or the emergence into any other political status freely determined by a people constitute modes of implementing the right of self-determination’ (Principle 5 Friendly Relations Declaration), thus stressing, as the critical issue, the methods of reaching the decision and not the result.

From the above United Nations source there are three political statuses, of which US Federal Recognition falls into #3:

1- Establishment of a sovereign and independent state
2- The free association or integration with an independent state
3- Or the emergence into any other political status freely determined by a people

For the reasons in bold above, you as the Hawaiian Nationals’ leaders who are entrusted with Hawaiian Affairs in the State of Hawaii under the American Democracy, CANNOT profess to have the “determination by a people” to fund ACT195 and ACT77, essentially Na’i Aupuni. The reason is that only 20% of the Hawaiian population are on the Kana’iolowalu commission roll and hundreds and thousands are NOT AWARE of the roll or its clear purpose. As stated before, the Kana’iolowalu Roll Commission was a failure and Elections America Inc.’s contract should be terminated.

9. Most importantly, Hawaii was NEVER annexed to the United States due to the Ku’e Petition. Hawaii is an ESTABLISHED SOVEREIGN AND INDEPENDENT STATE, under US military occupation.

There is a clear violation of beneficiary rights to self-determination, both as an indigenous people and as descendants of our kupuna whose country was illegally overthrown by the United States. The 1993 Apology bill, (US Public Law 103-150) admits to the overthrow of Queen Lili’uokalani with the backing of the US military.

Therefore, the self-determination rights of OHA trust beneficiaries are rooted in its country’s sovereignty and independence, NOT as a group of indigenous people a part America as many presidential and congressional regimes would like to falsely perpetuate in Hawaii. (http://hawaiiankingdom.org/us-occupation.shtml)

It is internationally known that a joint resolution has no jurisdiction outside of a country’s (the United States of America’s) land base, making the Newlands Joint Resolution a land theft and a right to pillage the Kingdom of the Hawaiian Islands by US Congress while under its military occupation. Therefore, pursuing and funding federal recognition of Hawaiians under the plenary power of another country is the actual activity being funded. Which is to FUND THE HARMING of the Hawaiian community by way of ASSIMILATING them into the American political system unbeknownst to the entire Hawaiian community and the world. As the above UN quote states, “thus stressing, as the critical issue, the methods of reaching the decision and not the result.” Na’i Aupuni is the critical issue, the method referred to in the quote and is again, petitioned to be immediately DEFUNDED.

In conclusion, we petition that OHA defund Na’i Aupuni and all related activities at once for the following compiled reasons with the supporting comments made above:

1 Trust Duties of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Compromised and Not Carried Out.
2 Self-determination initiatives such as ACT195 need to come from the people, not the government.
3 Kana’iolowalu is an utter failure.
4 NO Hawaiian National Consensus to support Na’i Aupuni or federal recognition.
5 Na’i Aupuni’s use of fear tactics on the Hawaiian community.
6 Na’i Aupuni is a true political process under the guise of a Private process.
7 Elections America Inc.’s performance of services are poor and should be terminated.
8 “NO free determination by a people” due to no Consensus (above).
9 Hawaii was NEVER annexed to the United States due to the Ku’e Petition. Hawaii is an ESTABLISHED SOVEREIGN AND INDEPENDENT STATE, under US military occupation.

In Earnest:
Charmaine Bugado

PDF: Full Text of Letter

List of letter supporters:
‘Ata Moala
Abcde Shepherd
Andrew Puna
Bj Akui
Bobbie Mattoon
Chad Newman
Cynthia Deleon
Dana Keawe
David Maxwell Cagulada
Debra Kekaualua
Diana K. J. Moala
Diana M. Moala
Dorian Kalikolehuaolokelani Cabanting
Edie Williams
Edwin Stone Skippa Kipu
Ernest David Kaimana Caravalho
Healani Sonoda-Pale
Hoomanawanui Spinney
Joe Keliiaumoana Stevens
Johnny Kealoha
Jonah Iwiulaokalani Keohokapu
Joseph S. Pascua
Kaimana Matejek
Ka'iulani J Lambert
Kamealoha Patrick-Soloman Hanohano-Smith
Kapohuolahaina Moniz Pa
Kapuniaieluaeahokuokekai Robert and Ranette Strinz
Ku'ulei Perez
Lisa DeSilva Tam-Hoy Robbins
Lopaka Lonoaea
M Ewalani Manuel-Coats
Mahatma X Kamapuaa
Matangi Moala
Melia Iwamoto
Michael Alika Simon Sr.
Michelle Tomas
Paul Etxeberri
Rana Kaai
Ranette Strinz
Rodney Silva
Ryan Sonognini
Sione K. H. Moala
Susan Rosier
Tatiana Maumausolo
Terence Palani Akina
Tevita I. S. Moala
Theodora Akau Gaspar
Theresa Keohunani Taber
Tina T Billy B
Zeke EZ


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