Guardian's qualities praised

Tahu Potiki
Tahu Potiki
Former Ngai Tahu chief executive Tahu Potiki's values as an environmental guardian were highlighted at the Otago Regional Council committee he sat on yesterday.

Mr Potiki was appointed to its policy committee, along with Otakou kaumatua Edward Ellison, in June, in a council move to enhance its relationship with iwi.

He died late last month while in Auckland receiving treatment for liver disease which had been diagnosed in 2014.

Council policy committee chairwoman Gretchen Robertson said he had the qualities of a true leader including ''strength, pride, presence and wisdom''.

He was best described as having manaakitanga, or kindness and care for others, and kaitiakitanga, or guardianship and protection of the environment, she said.

He gave those values to the council and the committee.

''Tahu was not afraid to shift the boundaries to ask us were we showing manaakitanga and kaitiakitanga, were our words reflected in our action?''

The council sent condolences to his family.

Mr Potiki will not be replaced before the new council is elected next month, at which point it will have to revisit the arrangement.

jono.edwards@odt.co.nz

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