Wayne Thompson

Wayne Thompson is a NZ Herald reporter.

Name change no help to success in elections

Ann Degia-Pala believes her failure in the elections resulted from the missing Labour Party logo on the voting paper.
Ann Degia-Pala believes her failure in the elections resulted from the missing Labour Party logo on the voting paper.

Changing their names to get higher up the alphabetically arranged voting list of 28 candidates did not result in success for two candidates running for the Henderson-Massey Local Board.

Ann Degia- Pala, who is a prominent figure in west Auckland's Indian Community known as Ann Pala, recently added her maiden name to her married surname.

She was criticised online about her name change, which allowed her to appear 14th on list of 28 candidates.

However, in the result, only two candidates above her name were successful.

Yesterday, she said: "I am disappointed with the result but it has nothing to do with the name changes.

"I stood for the Labour Party and unfortunately on the form, which was going to say Labour, it was an error on my part, I did not put it in and no one saw the error.

"When I rang the Electoral Office, it was too late to go in on the booklet and the ballot paper.

"So I went on the voting paper without the Labour Party logo and I think that's why my votes were disappointing.

"I am grateful for the people who voted for me and I'm coming back."

She added: "I will stick to my name which is my name - Ann Degia-Pala.

My email name is Ann Pala and that will remain as well. I have been on Facebook since it started as Ann Degia-Pala."

The other board candidate, Cheryl Brown-Talamaivao had campaigned unsuccessfully in west Auckland elections twice before.

This time, she added her great-grandfather's surname in order to put herself sixth instead of second-to-last on the list of candidates.

In the end, the hyphenated name was not a winning formula.

She received 5795 votes and four others whose name appeared before her received fewer votes.

The highest-voting candidate turned out to be Luke Wilson, who was listed 28th on the voting form.

Cheryl Brown-Talamaivao also sought to represent Te Atatu on the Waitakere Licensing Trust Board and her 1919 votes put her ahead of two out of seven candidates for the two spots.

The candidate with the most votes was Ross Dallow, who has been on the trust since 1992 and is a retired police district commander and Waitakere City Councillor and a member of the Henderson-Massey Local Board.

The other successful candidate was further down the list but was also high-profile - former Labour cabinet minister John Tamihere, talkback radio host and chief executive of the Waipareira Trust.

- NZ Herald

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