A hui calling itself Aha Aloha Aina 2016 plans a series of meetings on Oahu, Hawaii island and Maui later this month “to identify the very broad movement in the Hawaiian movement for Independence and educate the community on the various initiatives.”

That comes from a press release from the group, which is a clear challenge to the Nai Aupuni nation-building aha, or convention, that has been convening this month in Windward Oahu.

According to Aha Aloha Aina, the Nai Aupuni aha is “attempting to claim that they represent the Kanaka Maoli community when it excludes 80 percent of our people.”

The goals of Aha Aloha Aina are to:

  • reaffirm independence;
  • resist and oppose Nai Aupuni’s claims to be the representative voice of Hawaiians;
  • reject the current U.S. Department of Interior endeavor to federally recognize Kanaka Maoli as a Native Hawaiian tribe; and
  • unite Hawaiians and reveal the many different ways” that our people have been building and rebuilding our nation over the past several hundred years up to the present.”

The emergence of the new group comes as Nai Aupuni shared updates in a press release of its own this past weekend.

The Native Hawaiian Governance aha wrapped up the second week of its four-week long convention with a new leadership team in place, greater structure to the process, a focused purpose statement, and a body ready to draft a governing document,” it said.

Aha participant Alani Apio is quoted as saying, “Every day I feel that we are getting more maʻa to each other and more trusting of one another. Not that we agree but we can really start to talk about the tough issues with each other without jeapardizing the ability to literally stay together and talk. And to me that is huge!”

Aha Aloha Aina 2016 logo
Aha Aloha Aina 2016’s logo. Aha Aloha Aina

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