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Navajo-Hopi Observer | Flagstaff, Arizona

home : latest news : local May 28, 2016


11/8/2013 11:51:00 AM
Shingoitewa loses Hopi primary election
Chairman comes in fourth, Honanie and Honyaoma to face off in Nov. 20 general election
Herman Honanie (left) and Todd Honyaoma will vie for the Hopi Chairman position in the Nov. 20 Hopi general election. Photos/Rosanda Suetopka Thayer
Herman Honanie (left) and Todd Honyaoma will vie for the Hopi Chairman position in the Nov. 20 Hopi general election. Photos/Rosanda Suetopka Thayer
Hotevilla resident Maxine Selestewa goes to the polling place in Hotevilla  to vote in the Nov. 6 Hopi primary election. Photo/Rosanda Suetopka Thayer
Hotevilla resident Maxine Selestewa goes to the polling place in Hotevilla to vote in the Nov. 6 Hopi primary election. Photo/Rosanda Suetopka Thayer
Hopi Chairman candidate statements
After the Nov. 6 Hopi primary election, Herman Honanie and Todd Honyaoma, candidates for the Hopi Chairman office, talked with the Navajo-Hopi Observer about their goals should they be elected.

Herman Honanie

Like most of my opponents, we are all looking at key areas of concern for Hopi and my biggest concern with the expressed needs of the Hopi and Tewa people would be the actual delivery of services.

It's imperative that the incumbent be able to deliver the necessary services to our Hopi and Tewa people. We also need to provide transparency and competency in how our tribal services are delivered. The incumbent must be compelled to do this.

Also the communication between the chairman and our people is extremely important. I will promise to make myself available to our community, not just at election time, but every day, through myself or my staff. It won't be easy to make new changes, but we will have to do this together.

I also want to support the managers and directors of our Hopi tribal programs. For these tribal administrators to be effective they must be supported and we must follow procedure to hire qualified people. I also want to recognize our people and individuals who can offer solutions. We can't just be critical and not offer some new or better way to resolve issues. We must be open.

There are scores and scores of issues right now at the Hopi Tribe that are critical. Like the audits and we must be open with our Hopi public otherwise there will be too much presumptions about what we are doing at council and at our government. There will be a way back to help us resolve some of the current administrative problems but this is going to take change in employees and procedures and that won't be easy, but we have to start somewhere.

I also see a need to get together with local Hopi experts on various topics as well as being open to outside expert resources who can assist us in making informed decisions about Hopi resources and development.

I also want to be as open as I can about the Hopi council sessions and in that respect, I would like to consider allowing both the press and public in all open sessions but still respecting the authority and privacy of the Hopi council in sensitive or confidential matters.

I would also like to establish a firm schedule in meeting with all our villages often. I might consider either separate meetings at each village or else mass-meetings in one place for all of them to attend and participate. I would also like to have a formal yearly update such as a "State of the State" address.

I also want to acknowledge my immediate family, my wife and my kids for their love and support, that they could see my better qualities and talk to our Hopi and Tewa people about those. I am encouraging everyone to vote in the general election, especially our young people, because they are truly the way of the future.

Todd Honyaoma

I want to thank my family first, my children, my grandkids, my beautiful wife Rayma and my supporters and my campaign committee people who have supported me and are encouraging me to visualize and enact my vision and my dream to help the Hopi and Tewa people.

I also want to thank every single Hopi and Tewa community member who came out to vote yesterday, I really appreciate your participation. I also want to thank each of our veterans past and present who have truly sacrificed their lives and time to provide all of us with the liberties and freedom so we can exercise this special right to vote in our communities and this country, they have made the ultimate sacrifice so we can participate in this process.

Firstly, if I am elected, I would like to tackle the issues of the outstanding audits that have not been completed for the past 3 years under the Shing administration.

I also want to meet with all the tribal employees, its all of our tribal employees, at the main headquarters and at our villages, who are the primary service providers and backbone of the Hopi government who serve our community that need to be heard and allowed to have input into our policies and processes at the Hopi Tribe.

I would also like to have a firsthand serious look at all the current 638 programs and our state and federal programs...these programs all require close monitoring and compliance and unfortunately, this has been neglected in the past few years.

A lot of our loyal employees have tried to correct some issues of non-compliance by the Shing administration and unfortunately they were censured for their actions...this seriously impacts our government-to-government relationships and our grant and federal funding.

Another issue that is critical is our village communication with the people and the traditional Hopi leadership. We are Hopi, we always will be. The Council and the executive offices need to consult with all villages before we act in the council chambers...this has not been happening. We need to follow our constitution and need to consider the villages' directives, even from those villages that do not have formal representatives in our council chambers. The Council and the executive officers are elected by the people and we need to remember this.

I was a little disappointed in the low voter turn-out but I think that is due to our community being so frustrated with how our current tribal government does not and will not relate or inform them on issues. We can't just keep talking and making decisions for everyone without talking with them or trying to educate them on the important issues...that is part of our responsibility as leaders for this community.

We must educate our Hopis and Tewas on how a government works and get them involved in the process. Also we need to teach our children and grandchildren about our clan history as well as our tribal government history, how and why our Hopi council came into being.... so maybe we can avoid policy mistakes that we seem to keep making over and over. I would like to see curriculum changes in our schools so we can offer more oral history in our Hopi culture and tradition. We must pick out what is good in dominant society and blend it with our Hopi values and traditions, a positive blend of both worlds.

I would also like to see open meetings in the council. I want to try and refrain from all these "executive sessions" there are now. You cannot decide or approve big issues for Hopis without public information. I'd like to invite our regular Hopi community into the Hopi council chambers because that house belongs to the people. It's their house. The Hopi council chambers belong to the Hopi and Tewa people.

We were elected to serve the people, not just a few select council members or a few select villages and we must always remember this.


Rosanda Suetopka Thayer
The Observer

Todd Honyaoma, former vice chairman of the Hopi Tribe and a local businessman, and Herman Honanie, the current Vice Chairman of the Hopi Tribe and former Health Services director came out on top in an eight-way race for chairman of the Hopi Tribe in the Nov. 6 Hopi primary election.

Final results from the Hopi Elections Office show Honanie with 387 votes and Honyaoma coming in second with 276 votes.

Honanie and Honyaoma will face off Nov. 20 in the Hopi Tribe's general election. The winner will be the chairman of the Hopi Tribe for the next four years.

Micah Loma'omvaya came in third with 267 votes. Current Chairman Leroy Shingoitewa came in fourth with 178 votes. Tommy Canyon received 124 votes, Norman Honie had 104 votes, Mike Puhuyesva received 65 votes and Caleb Johnson received 53 votes.

Alfred Lomahquahu received the most votes in the Hopi Tribe's vice chairman race with 630 votes. Lomahquahu is an ex-Marine, a master award winning wood carver and currently serves as the governor of the village of Bacavi. Lomahquahu also serves as the commander of the American Legion Lori Piestewa-Hopi Post No. 80.

Ronald Honyumptewa came in second in the Vice chairman's primary with 320 votes.

Robert Sumatzkuku received 257 votes and George Mase received 222 votes.

Voter turn-out for the Hopi primary election for tribal chairman and vice Chairman was low. A little more than 1,400 registered Hopis and Tewas chose to vote. The Hopi Tribe numbers around 15,000 members both on and off the reservation.




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