The Northland Age



The election of 31-year-old Kaikohe teacher Moko Tepania to the Far North’s top job has brought pride and optimism to his home town.

Tracey Albert, Ohaeawai ¯

“It’s awesome to see a bit of Mā ori in there. He’ll see both sides of the story, he’ll bring a positive vibe, and bring the community, young and old, together. As a man for the young ones to look up to, I hope he’ll bring more respect for the elderly too.”

Ram Podal, Kaikohe

“He’s a teacher, an educated person, so I’m hoping we will bring change to our community. He’s local, he’s young, he’s approachab­le, he will bring innovation and energy. We need to redirect our youth into the right direction. Being a local he knows our immediate needs. He can uplift our community because he is from here.”

NZME took a walk down Broadway, the main street, to ask locals their views about the district’s history-making mayor.

Annie Hilton, Kaikohe

“I’m super-proud of him becoming mayor and I’ll support him in any way I can. He’s a genuinely lovely young man with a heart for the community and the Far North. I think he’ll bring fresh eyes to the role and hopefully bring some change.”

Maryn Ashby, Ohaeawai ¯

“I’m all for diversity — you can’t be what you can’t see — and for him to be local and Mā ori is really breaking barriers. He’s opened the door to Mā ori and young people. Local government is such a white boys’ business club, but he’s broken the mould. He’s definitely engaged a lot more Mā ori and got them voting. ”

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