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Ewa construction may impact on cultural Hawaiian rights

Hawaiian interests demand hearing regarding possible ongoing destruction of cultural practices

Hawaiian interests demand hearing regarding possible ongoing destruction of cultural practices
Michael Kumukauoha Lee gathers limu at One'ula Beach Park / Image via oha.org

Jan 01, 2012

HAWAII (eTN) - Michael Kumukauoha Lee, an Office of Hawaiian Affairs beneficiary with a native Hawaiian cultural interest in the protection of the Ewa Field area Karst system at Honouliuli in Ewa on Oahu, is demanding a hearing regarding possible ongoing destruction in the area caused by current construction.

According to a statement made by Mr. Lee, a recognized native Hawaii cultural practitioner under Hawaii Revised Statutes, “The fresh water flow to the sea is the foundation of our Hawaiian cultural and religious gathering rights.” The eminent potential harm and loss of limu to his Hawaiian cultural practice of medicinal seaweed, impacts on his Hawaiian cultural practices, which is protected under the Constitution of the State of Hawaii.

Mr. Lee said there is an Ali’i burial complex located at One’ula Beach Park in Ewa, which is adjacent to Kalaeloa. According to Mr. Lee, the cultural complex, including underground karst water flow and burial sites, are contiguous in the two parcels, and the erection of the artificial fence line does not serve to bifurcate this important cultural complex. Mr. Lee is, therefore, asking that an archaeological subsurface investigation occur.

Construction in this geographical area is currently a subject under Federal Section 106 review, and on behalf of Mr. Lee, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has sent his request to the Historic Preservation Officer for the Hawaii Navy Region for follow-up.

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