Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


Maori Party Offers Support for Embattled Maori MPs

Maori Party Offers Support for Embattled Maori MPs in Labour Party Dr Pita Sharples and Tariana Turia, Co-leaders

Tuesday 11 April 2006

Amidst media speculation that the Labour Maori Caucus is worried over being seen as 'old hat'; and is developing strategies to "combat impressions of sluggishness", the Maori Party has admitted they have tried to offer support to their Maori colleagues in the Labour Party.

"Labour will always have a real problem convincing our people to support the brand 'Labour' rather than the brand 'Maori'" said Tariana Turia, Co-leader of the Maori Party.

"Even in our latest round of consultations which commenced this last weekend, the people have told us that as far as they are concerned there is very little difference between either the Labour or National brand" said Mrs Turia, speaking in-between hui at Otaihape and Waiouru in the central North Island.

"Tangata whenua want an independent Maori voice in Parliament, and we are doing our utmost, as the Maori Party, to fulfill that goal" said Mrs Turia.

According to media sources, senior Labour Party members have admitted that there is growing concern at their "Maori MPs failure to communicate with the Maori electorate" and there had been criticism of Labour Maori MPs "slow response to Maori issues". [refer The Herald, 'Labour Seeks Tactics to beat Maori Party'].

"In the hui I attended over the weekend at Ruatoria and Gisborne, I was reminded of the importance tangata whenua place in an independent Maori political voice" said Dr Sharples. "Unfortunately for the Labour Maori caucus - the perception will always be that their ability to participate will always be subservient to the Labour message".

"We will never resile from supporting Maori in just causes" said Dr Sharples.

"That is why we have attempted to support the Labour MPs over the last few months, as they have tried to work through the problems within their caucus. A classic recent example was when Hon Dover Samuels and Mahara Okeroa were sidelined, and their Ministerially delegated responsibilities overlooked, by calling on Rick Barker to oversee their portfolio areas" [at the time of Chris Carter's absence overseas].

"It has been disappointing that in their response to our support, Labour has chosen to dismiss us as the 'new kids on the block', implying that to support the beleagued Maori MPs is naïve" said Dr Sharples. "As our young people would say, 'whatever'!"

"We believe that manaakitanga cuts through party political boundaries. If a colleague is having difficulties, it shouldn't be the party political colours they wear that determine your behaviour towards them".

Our over-riding concern should surely be - what we can all do to ensure that we can defend Maori rights, and advance Maori interests, for the benefit of the nation. Ultimately, that's what we have come to Parliament to do, to work for our people" stated Dr Sharples.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>

ALSO:

More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news