Atiu must be one of the most over governed pieces of earth. With a population of only 569 (at 1/12/2006) Atiu has two members of Parliament, a Government Representative who reports back to the prime minister what is happening on the island, an Island Secretary who controls 103 government employees, a Mayor who heads an Island Council of 5 village members and four traditional chiefs and who really controls nothing, three Ariki or traditional chiefs, 26 Mataipo traditional lessor chiefs, and 34 Rangatira representing the land. Not many Indians left when you figure that half the population is under 18 years.
To do anything on the island consent should be obtained from all the above. So it is typical to see at least 2 meetings in progress every day. Atiuan's love to talk. Unfortunately little gets done.
We haven't mentioned the 12,000 odd Atuians that live overseas in Rarotonga, New Zealand and increasingly Australia who still feel they should be involved in any major decision about the island's future and use of their land. This involvement adds a totally new dimension to island governance.
The Atiu Island Council of 2001 is shown from left to right - Murare Iona, Tauu Porio, Mayor Aneru Tautu, Piri Touna, Joe Kae and George Titi.
In 2004 the Atiu Island Council was Mayor - Tura Koronui, Deputy Mayor and member for Mapumai - Maara Tairi, Member for Te Ngatangi - Tauu Porio, Member for Areora - Tuanekore Miriau, Member for Ngatiarua - Teura Maka Kea Jnr. and member for Teenui - Vaine Paretoa. The three ariki are also members of the Island Council as is Aronga Mana representative - Moe Boaza.
In 2007 the new Atiu Island Council elected were, Mayor - Nellie Mokoroa, Deputy Mayor and member for Mapumai - Maara Tairi, member for Tengatangi Teariki Teiotu, member for Areora - Kore Samuel, member for Ngatiarua - Teura Kea Jnr. and member for Teenui - Vaine Paretoa. Goverment Representative - Moe Boaza. The three Ariki are also non-voting members as is Aronga Mana representative Tearai Mokoroa (Nellie Mokoroa's father in law).
In 2010 the island council elected were, Mayor - Taoro Brown, Deputy Mayor and member for Teenuii - Vaine Paretoai, member for Tengatangi Teariki Teiotu, member for Areora - Kore Samuel, member for Ngatiarua - Teura Kea Jnr. and member for Mapumai - Teremoana Windy. Goverment Representative - Piri Ratouna. The three Ariki are also non-voting members as is Aronga Mana representative Moe Boaza.
The new Island Government Act #20 2012-13 was passed by parliament on 22 February 2013. The new act removed the need for new elections until 22 February 2016. (download a 500kB pdf of this Act here)
However, in 2014 the Mayor was convicted of receiving and as a consequence his seat was declared vacant. He reran in the by-election but lost to our new Mayor Ina Mokoroa. Ina appointed Kore Samuel as deputy mayor.