Jim Anderton's message to Mana Motuhake
‘We've never before been this close to Government. I made a commitment at last year's annual conference to make jobs my top priority, particularly jobs for our young Maori New Zealanders.
‘On Monday I'm going to release our detailed economic development policy, setting out how we're going to do it. I want to come to the Mana Motuhake conference with Sandra Lee when you meet again next year as part of a new Government and you can hold us accountable.
‘There is so much more to achieve. It's been twenty years since Matiu Rata left the Labour Party to form Mana Motuhake. Who would have bet then that after all this time we would be this close to taking Mana Motuhake into the Government of New Zealand?
'Ten years ago I too left the Labour Party, and formed the New Labour Party. Government.
‘On the way, Mana Motuhake and the NLP have formed a partnership in the Alliance.
‘We have been principled political movements. I am confident that Mana Motuhake and the Alliance will be the heart of a new government.
‘We'll bring integrity and vision, and we will fight for jobs for our people.
‘This week we have heard a lot in the media about the poor recognition of the Maori All Blacks. Still, after decades, some of your players are not getting equal recognition alongside other international teams. Your players are not paid the same and you are not given the same professiona l status.
‘It shows us that there is still a lot of work to do, not just in rugby, but in all areas of life for Maori. It is not just about equal payments - although that is central - it is about equality at all levels, and a recognition of status which brings with it the right to determine your own future. 'I would like to finish with a tribute to your leader, Sandra Lee, who you have lent to us as deputy leader of the Alliance. It is the first time in history that a woman has been even mooted as the next minister of Maori Affairs. That is something for us all to celebrate, particularly all of you here today,' said Jim Anderton.
“I wish you all the best for your hui a tau.