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A short Dr Sharples IV on the weeks topical issues

A short Dr Sharples IV on the weeks topical issues

Dr Sharples during last years hikoi

Given the fact that John Tamihere has probably received about two million dollars worth of free advertising this week Scoop decided to quickly catch up with his main opponent in the electorate of Tamaki Makauru, the Maori Party co-leader Dr Pita Sharples.

Whilst Dr Sharples was unwilling to get into too much detail on specific Maori Party policy he was more than willing to comment on the Civil Union Bill, the place of women in power and why the Maori Party was necessary.

Although his co-leader decided to vote against the Civil Union Bill, Dr Pita Sharples told Scoop he would have voted in favour of the Civil Union Bill. Dr Sharples felt the legislation was important to some within Maoridom, who were a minority within a minority, and he considered the passing of the legislation did not affect the rights of other New Zealanders in any way.

Dr Sharples was adamant the Maori Party had a vital role to play in convincing both National and Labour that “Maori knowledge is [as] equally valid [as pakeha knowledge]”

“At the moment the Government is hell bent on closing down Maori initiatives - even Maori knowledge programmes in wananga and universities” he said.

With regard to women as leaders, Dr Sharples pointed out that in Maori society it was quite common for women to be in positions of power and therefore he considered there was no difficulty with positions of power being occupied by women.

Whilst Dr Sharples and Mr Tamihere have obvious differences with regard to ‘social engineering’ both seem in agreement that state housing should be kept for those really in need “State housing is for people who at this time cannot afford other houses and it should be kept that way,” said Dr Sharples.

ENDS

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