Video courtesy ‘Olelo Community Media, June 24 video by David Corrigan
HONOLULU, Hawaii – A member of a Hawaiian cultural advisory group to the University of Hawaii-Hilo Chancellor and Office of Mauna Kea Management told the land board on Friday that they have not been consulted on the current conflict taking place on the mountain.
As the situation between supporters and opponents of the planned Thirty Meter Telescope grows more tense, the Board of Land and Natural Resources voted to enact new restrictions to counter ongoing protests. Tiffnie Kakalia told the BLNR that she does not agree with new restrictions. Then, to the dismay of some board members, she said that the volunteer advisory group she is a member of – Kahu Kū Mauna – has not been asked to weigh in on the conflict.
“We have not been consulted on it, at all, to date,” said Kakalia, who was testifying as an individual on Friday. “And I find that very troubling, especially hearing testimonies of people and our community wanting to engage.”
According to the Office of Mauna Kea Management website:
“Kahu Kū Mauna (Guardians of the Mountain) is a nine-member council named by the Mauna Kea Management Board (MKMB). The council advises the MKMB, Office of Mauna Kea Management (OMKM) and UH Hilo Chancellor in Hawaiian cultural matters affecting the Mauna Kea Science Reserve. Members of Kahu Ku Mauna are selected on the basis of their awareness of Hawaiian cultural practices, traditions and significant landforms as applied to traditional and customary use of Mauna Kea and their sensitivity to the sacredness of Mauna Kea.”
Kahu Kū Mauna did not oppose TMT when the Office of Mauna Kea Management gave their approval for the project in May 2010.