Tuesday, August 30, 2016


In the wake of the latest ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the Grassroot Institute of Hawai`i affirmed the overall results of the Akina v. State of Hawaii litigation. According to the Institute, the suit has been very successful in educating the public about the problems in the state's nation-building process.

With the help of the group Judicial Watch, a group of Native Hawaiians and other concerned citizens brought suit against the state for launching an unconstitutional election. The plaintiffs then sought a preliminary injunction that would halt any race-based vote. Because the ratification of the Native Hawaiian Constitution has been indefinitely suspended--and because Na`i Aupuni, one of the defendants, has been dissolved--the Ninth Circuit dismissed the plaintiff's motion for a preliminary injunction as moot.

"Overall, our litigation is achieving its objectives. Through the course of this lawsuit, we have seen the state cancel one unconstitutional election and postpone another one indefinitely," stated Keli`i Akina, Ph.D., President of the Grassroot Institute and a plaintiff in the lawsuit. "We have seen Na`i Aupuni--the organization that was created for the purpose of holding the election--shut down. And thanks to our efforts, more questions are being asked about how funds intended for the benefit of Native Hawaiians should be spent."

Dr. Akina continued: "At present, we are reviewing all of our options regarding the decision in order to determine what our next step will be. We cannot forget that during oral arguments, the defendants claimed that OHA has set aside money for a ratification vote. The state has not yet discarded its disastrous nation-building plans, but this suit has put them on notice. We will not allow an unconstitutional and divisive election to go forward, unchallenged, in Hawai`i," Dr. Akina concluded.

The Grassroot Institute of Hawai`i reaffirmed its commitment to defending the Constitution and expressing the concerns of Native Hawaiians opposed to the state's race-based nation-building process.