The 2021 Trust Board Elections are coming! This year an election will be held for five (5) Elected Representatives for the Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trust.
What are the eligibility requirements to be a candidate?
The eligibility requirements are outlined in the Second Schedule of the Trust Deed.
To be eligible as a candidate, you must be a registered adult (over 18 years old) member of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei. A member of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei is defined in the Trust Deed as the members of the Hapū, being the toto (blood) descendants of their common ancestor Tuperiri.
You must also meet the requirements associated with officer eligibility as outlined in the Charities Act 2005. This includes not being an undischarged bankrupt, and not having recently (within the last 7 years) been convicted of certain crimes.
It is also a recommend that applicants complete an introductory course in Governance (2 days). The Trust will reimburse whānau candidates the course fees (fees only – no reimbursement is available for whānau time or disbursements/travel costs). Recommended and approved courses from the Institute of Directors include the Governance Essentials course and any one of the other “Essentials of Directorship” courses. Refer https://www.iod.org.nz for course options. Please contact our office at NWOT@ngatiwhatuaorakei.com for any queries in relation to Governance courses.
If I am elected, what does that mean?
Whānau who are successfully elected are referred to “Elected Representatives”. Each Elected Representative will become a Director and Shareholder of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Ltd along with other Elected Representatives. Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Ltd is a company, registered in accordance with the Companies Act 1993, that acts as the Trustee of the Trust.
So Elected Representatives are not Trustees?
That is correct. Elected Representatives are not “Trustees”. The Trust has a corporate trustee – Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Limited. Elected Representatives are each a director of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Limited and together are referred to as the board of directors of NNgāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Ltd (the “Board”).
What are the responsibilities associated with being an Elected Representatives?
Given the size, complexity and diversity of the Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Group, the responsibility of the Elected Representatives is very significant.
As noted above, the Elected Representatives are directors of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Ltd. As such, individual directors have a broad range of directors’ duties, and Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Ltd, as corporate trustee, has additional trustee duties. This creates added responsibility for individuals in their role as a director, and for the Board, as governors of the trustee.
Being a director of a company comes with a wide range of duties and obligations, including a fiduciary duty to act in good faith and generally in what they believe to be the best interests of the company.
The Directors must ensure that the Group (including subsidiaries Whai Māia and Whai Rawa) is acting in a way that reflects the purposes of the Trust and acts for the benefit of all members.
There is also the need to ensure Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Ltd is acting legally and all compliance requirements are met.
What is the term of the appointments?
Each Elected Representative is for a 4-year term and at the end of that 4 years, is eligible for re-election (refer Trust Deed, Second Schedule, clause 4.1).
What support is available for Elected Representatives?
Entering into a new governance role can be daunting at first. The Trust makes available a professional development allowance for each Elected Representative in order to up-skill over the course of their term. In addition, the Trust Office provides support to the Board and assists with IT, administration, policies and access to Board papers and other relevant documentation. The Trust is also working on a formal induction programme for new Elected Representatives. The Trust will ensure Elected Representatives have all appropriate equipment in order to effectively participate in Board activity.
What are the risks of being an Elected Representative?
The office of Elected Representative and Director of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Trustee Ltd comes with certain risks. In certain situations, an Elected Representative could be personally liable for certain decisions and actions taken by the Board.
The policies and standards set by the Board will assist in understanding these risk areas and how they are being managed, however some risk will always exist. The Trust has provided an indemnity and also taken out Directors & Officers insurance to cover the Elected Representatives to some extent. Further information in relation to Director responsibilities, governance risks, and health and safety obligations can be found on the Institute of Directors website here: https://www.iod.org.nz/Governance-Resources/Publications.
What is the time commitment required?
The Board meets formally every month (excluding January) with meetings currently set as the first Friday in every month. Formal meetings last a day and require pre-reading and preparation of one additional day. Outside of formal meetings, Elected Representatives will be called upon to meet in relation to strategy, Board culture and to attend/represent the hapū at various events or occasions significant to Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei. There are also Board Committees (e.g. Risk, Assurance, and Audit, Treaty Settlement Protection) and meetings with other iwi, Government or strategic partners that will require Board representation.
As Elected Representatives, whānau concerns or queries are also directed to the Board and will require consideration and response. The workload can vary month-to-month but it would be appropriate to ensure you have 3-4 days per month of time available for Elected Representative duties. The time commitment is more significant for the Deputy Chair and the Chair.
What if I live outside of Tāmaki Makaurau?
We welcome applications from whānau from outside Tāmaki Makaurau . If you are successful it is expected that you will be able to participate in hui and other board activity. We will provide technology and travel support to enable this participation, however, you should expect to spend time each month in Auckland as the majority of our activities are based in and around the city.
Do you get paid to be an Elected Representative?
Yes. The payment for Elected Representatives is set by formal resolution at the AGM. The current fee payable for an Elected Representative is $45,000 per year; $65,000 for the Deputy Chair and the Chair is paid $90,000. Fees are paid monthly.
What is the role of Whai Māia and Whai Rawa?
The Trust company has two wholly owned subsidiaries – Whai Māia and Whai Rawa. They deliver the whānau services and manage commercial activities for the hapū. Both subsidiaries have their own boards and management. The Trust has the vital role of providing oversight, direction and support to the subsidiaries.
Who is running the elections? Is it independent?
Independent servicer provider Election Services have been contracted to facilitate these elections. They has conducted several elections for Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei in the past and have a strong understanding of our requirements.
What are the key dates?
Nominations open on Friday 20 August, with a public notice calling for nominations. A copy of the public notice will be published online via e-pānui, and in the NZ Herald to whānau and will also be communicated via e-pānui and available on our website. Nomination forms can be obtained by:
Nominations will be open for three weeks, closing at 5.00pm on Friday, 10 September, 2021. Election packs will be posted on Friday, 8 October, 2021 to all registered adult hapū members with valid postal addresses and voting will close at 12.00 noon on Friday, 19 November, 2021. The results will be announced at the AGM on Sunday, 28 November, 2021.
Why isn’t there more time for applications by interested whānau?
The timetable for nominations is specifically outlined in the Trust Deed as 21 days from the date of notice.
What is required for a nomination?
You will need to obtain 5 signatures of adult registered members of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei. The nomination form must be submitted in writing, signed, and done with the consent of the candidate. The nomination form must also include a photograph (passport sized – colour or black and white), and a statement of no more than 250 words in te reo Māori and 150 words in English, or a total of 400 words if a combination of te reo Māori and English languages are used, outlining the eligibility and candidacy. Further details will be available on the nomination form which is now available.
Who is eligible to vote?
All adult registered members of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei are eligible to vote.
How do I ensure I get my voting pack and any notices?
All notices and voting papers will be posted to the address held on the membership register. If your address is incorrect or missing, you will not get the information needed to vote. Please check your address details are correct via the online member portal, in person at the Marae or Trust Office, or by contacting us on 0508 NW Orakei or (09) 336 1670.
What happens if my voting pack does not arrive?
Please contact Independent Election Services to request a replacement on: 0800 922 822 or email@example.com.
Can I observe the vote counting?
The vote counting will happen on Tuesday 23 November, 2021. This will take place at Election Services, Level 2/198 Federal Street, Auckland City. Each candidate of the election may nominate a scrutineer to be present at the vote counting. The Chief Returning Officer must be notified of the appointment of a scrutineer by submitting the relevant form (available on our website) to be received by midday (12pm noon) on Friday 19 November, 2021.
Who do I contact about any concerns over the elections process?
The Chief Returning Officer, Dale Ofsoske, Independent Election Services Phone: 0800 922 822 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
What if there is a dispute in relation to the result?
Candidates are able to request a review of the election result as outlined in the Trust Deed. It is important to note that under the Deed an applicant must lodge $1,000 to initiate the review, which is repaid by the Trust in the situation the review is successful. If unsuccessful, the funds will be used to offset the review costs.
It is important that you or your nominee thinks carefully about the role of an Elected Representative and considers the time commitment and legal obligations and duties associated with holding such an important and strategic role. Being an Elected Representative can be stressful but also very rewarding. Please click here for additional resources that can be reviewed as part of the decision-making process.
Register to Vote
Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei invites descendants of Tuperiri, who have not already registered, to apply for membership. Registration forms are obtainable by:
To ensure that you receive your voting papers, and on time, please check that your details are up to date. You can do so by:
1. Phone: 0508 NW Orakei
2. Email: email@example.com
3. Fill out the online form.