20 Jun 2008

Cooks chiefs to meet again amid dissent over proclamation

3:21 pm on 20 June 2008

The House of Ariki in the Cook Islands will be meeting again to discuss the fallout from its proclamation purporting to be taking ownership of the country.

Last week, a number of traditional chiefs, or ui ariki, claimed they were dismissing the Queen's representative and government, and assuming leadership of the country.

New Zealand-based Takitumu paramount chief, Pa Ariki, says her representative a the meeting with the deputy Prime Minister said it was cordial and fruitful.

She's happy that the government has taken the step to follow the protocol.

"My understanding is that the President has made a huge mistake, and that she's withdrawn her involvement with Mr Mita. I think the next step would be that [the government] have another meeting with the House of Ariki, because it is in the constitution, so they must work together."

Pa Ariki.

One of the Ariki, who did not wish to be named, says the Ariki will meet again, and release a public statement at the weekend.