18 Aug 2010

Cooks church based reform group to stand in November election

3:51 pm on 18 August 2010

A reform group in the Cook Islands hopes to have political candidates standing in every consituency at the November 17 election.

Te Kura O Te'Au is a people's movement founded based on Christian principles, initially to oppose Sunday flights to Aitutaki, but has now extended its concerns.

The group's founder, Tarota Tom, says members want to move beyond party politics and start campaigning on issues that really concern the people.

"The political system needs to reform. Spiritual empowerment. To strengthen the role of religion, advisory, and legislation to maintain the spiritual balance of the country. The culture - to reform the role of the House of Ariki and Legislature - and encourage the retaining of the religions of traditions, customs and culture of the Cook Islands. And one high prority is depopulation, people are leaving."

Tarota Tom says Te Kura O Te 'Au translates into English as messengers of peace.