Candidacy challenges unresolved as yet

Maui County Clerk Danny Mateo has until Tuesday to determine whether there’s merit to objections to the mayoral candidacies of Neldon Mamuad and Nelson Waikiki Jr.

On Friday, Mateo said he was reviewing the objections, filed in letters Tuesday. He said he’s consulting with the county Department of the Corporation Counsel and looking at the objections in light of the Maui County Charter, the County Code, state law and nomination papers filed by the candidates.

Attorney Richard Minatoya has contested Mamuad’s nomination, contending that he did not submit his financial disclosure statement at the same time as his nomination papers, which were filed on the deadline, June 3.

According to an affidavit submitted by Minatoya in support of his objection to Mamuad’s candidacy for mayor, Mamuad submitted his financial disclosure statement June 5, two days after the candidate filing deadline.

Kahului resident Walter Enomoto submitted a letter disputing the legitimacy of Waikiki’s candidacy, arguing that Waikiki should not be permitted to count, as part of his required one-year residency in Maui County, his approximately nine months’ of incarceration in Maui Community Correctional Center.

Waikiki has acknowledged being behind bars during that period, but he maintained that because he received mail while at MCCC, that should not affect his residency requirement as a candidate for mayor.

Waikiki, 49, is under supervised release, awaiting sentencing Dec. 10 on four felony charges of securities fraud. He had been in pretrial custody at MCCC, unable to post a cash-only bail of $100,000.

Enomoto also has taken issue with the accuracy of Waikiki’s nomination papers, pointing out that an address at 352 Kealii St. doesn’t exist in Wailuku. Waikiki said he meant to use his brother’s Kealii Drive residence in Paukukalo, and he has since moved to another residence on Kealaloa Drive in Makawao.

Mateo said that while the objections are under review, it will ultimately be his decision whether the complaints have merit. If one or both of the objections have merit, then Mateo said he would need to file a complaint in 2nd Circuit Court and ask a judge to determine whether either candidate should be disqualified from the Aug. 9 primary election.

If he finds there’s no merit, then he said he’d meet with those who’ve filed the objections and the candidates.

* Brian Perry can be reached at