What is Na‘i Aupuni?

Na‘i Aupuni is an independent organization made up of a volunteer board of directors from the Hawaiian community. It exists solely to help establish a path for Hawaiian self-determination. It will do this through inclusion of as many Hawaiians as possible and in a transparent way.

Na‘i Aupuni is separate and independent from OHA and the State of Hawai‘i.

When was Na‘i Aupuni formed?

Na‘i Aupuni was formed in December 2014.

What is Na‘i Aupuni’s purpose?

Na‘i Aupuni will select organizations and vendors to conduct its work.

Na‘i Aupuni will monitor vendors, but will have no influence on the outcome of the delegate election, ‘Aha, or referendum.

How did Na‘i Aupuni come about?

OHA reached out to the ali‘i trusts, royal societies and other Hawaiian organizations to discuss reorganization of a Native Hawaiian government and nation building.

That discussion led to the realization that the individuals who would oversee the delegate election and ‘Aha process must forego involvement as delegates or political advocates.

Five individuals initially stepped forward as unpaid volunteers to form an independent organization (Na‘i Aupuni) to conduct the process of the election of delegates, the ‘Aha and any ratification vote. Na‘i Aupuni will also monitor the contractors. Na‘i Aupuni decided on December 15, 2015 to terminate the election of delegates and to invite the candidates to participate in a gathering to discuss a path on self-governance.

Na‘i Aupuni board members also decided to serve as individuals and not as representatives of any one organization in order to preserve their autonomy.

What makes Na‘i Aupuni qualified to create the path to the ‘Aha?

Na‘i Aupuni’s directors have long associations with respected Hawaiian royal societies and a Hawaiian ali‘i-founded organization.

Na‘i Aupuni has retained professionals and consultants who, like the Na‘i Aupuni directors, have agreed not to serve as delegates or as political advocates relating to the election of delegates, the ‘Aha and any ratification vote.

How is Na‘i Aupuni funded?

Na‘i Aupuni is supported by OHA grant funds to the nonprofit Akamai Foundation, a fiscal sponsor for the benefit of Na‘i Aupuni. The funds consist of income and proceeds from the public land trust, pursuant to Article XII, Section 6 of the Hawai‘i Constitution. However, between Na‘i Aupuni and OHA:

  • “OHA agrees that Na‘i Aupuni has no obligation to consult with OHA or Akamai Foundation on its decisions regarding the performance of the Scope of Services.”
  • “Na‘i Aupuni hereby agrees that the decisions of Na‘i Aupuni and its directors, paid consultants, election monitors, contractors, and attorneys regarding the performance of the Scope of Services will not be directly or indirectly controlled or affected by OHA.”
  • “Scope of Services comprises an election of delegates, election and referendum monitoring, a governance ‘Aha, and a referendum to ratify any recommendation of the delegates arising out of the ‘Aha.”

Are Na‘i Aupuni’s board meetings open to the public?

Similar to other private, nonprofit organizations, Na‘i Aupuni’s meetings are not public. Information is available on this site and Na‘i Aupuni will continue to provide information on the processes and decisions as they unfold.