The student newspaper of Honolulu Community College

Theft and vandalism at Ka Māla o Niuhelewai

Alapaki Luke and former Chancellor Mike Rota in the HonCC mala
Alapaki Luke and former Chancellor Mike Rota in the HonCC mala

Vandals and thieves struck at the Honolulu Community College māla just after New Year’s, cutting down seven of the garden’s taro plants, according Hawaiian instructor Alapaki Luke.

This is the first time the school’s taro patch, which was several years old, has been damaged, Luke said. Previously it was only a few banana bunches that were targeted, he said.

Luke said the damage was done just after New Year’s Eve.

“This happened overnight or early morning before I arrived there at 7 a.m. (on Jan. 2), because we checked the māla New Years Eve and security was watching the area yesterday, New Year’s Day and the plants were fine,” he said.

Luke asked anyone who sees any suspicious activity in the area to call security immediately.

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