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Maori Party salutes Katherine Rich

Maori Party salutes Katherine Rich

13 February 2008

Maori Party co-leaders, Hon. Tariana Turia and Dr Pita Sharples, said the retirement of Katherine Rich at the next election will be a huge loss to the Parliament.

"Katherine has shown tremendous ability and commitment in the areas of social policy and education, which are critical areas for our people, and it will be hard to fill her shoes," said Mrs Turia.

"I have really admired Katherine as an independent thinker in the Parliament," Dr Sharples said. "It can be hard to maintain one's own stance, as a member of a large caucus in a highly polarised environment, but Katherine has always maintained her own integrity."

"We often talked about her children - she confided to me one day that they thought she worked at the airport!"

Mrs Turia said Katherine Rich's decision to retire reflects her ability to keep a sense of balance and proportion.

"It's a huge decision to enter Parliament, and to be a parent, given the tremendous demands on one's time. In the hurly-burly of political life, you can lose sight of the fact that, at the end of the day, your family is what really matters. In her equally big decision to leave Parliament, I think Katherine is clearly matching her words with deeds, and putting her family first, and I congratulate her for that, and we wish them all the best."

ENDS


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