Confusion remains over centre
Kris Faafoi has stepped into the fray dividing Porirua Whanau Centre.
The Mana MP has written to the Ministry of Social Development, which funds the health and community centre, asking it to investigate which of two rival boards should rightfully govern.
The centre has come under fire since changing its name from the Cannons Creek Fanau Centre last November.
A group led by resident Lepeti Tea, calling itself the Fanau Centre Trust Board, claimed it had taken over governance of the centre after the name change, but centre manager Liz Kelly insists the original board, led by Mike Fermanis, still stands.
A 600-signature petition protesting the name change was presented to Mr Faafoi by resident Rob Piva, which spurred the MP to act.
‘‘A lot of people rely on that place. I don’t know who the rightful trust is, but it needs to get sorted,’’ Mr Faafoi says.
‘‘For the confidence of the community in an organisation a lot of people rely on, it’s best to get it sorted out.’’
The fact taxpayer money funds the Whanau Centre was another reason to get the mess sorted, Mr Faafoi says.
Ms Tea says there is no confusion over who runs the centre – her board of trustees is legitimate.
Porirua City Council chief executive Gary Simpson agreed this month to mediate between the two boards, and Ms Tea welcomed any attempts to try to end the standoff.