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New Zealand First announces Wellington region candidates

15 AUGUST 2017

New Zealand First announces Wellington region candidates


Long-term Wellington City Councillor, Andy Foster, has been selected to contest the Wellington Central seat for New Zealand First at this year’s election.

“Mr Foster’s unparalleled knowledge of Wellington City, the region, and in particular the Wellington Central electorate makes him a great choice to represent New Zealand First in this diverse electorate,” says New Zealand First Leader and Northland Member of Parliament, Rt Hon Winston Peters.

A city councillor since 1992, Mr Foster has chaired the major council committees of Strategy and Policy, Transport Infrastructure, Urban Development, Built and Natural Environment, Recreation and Finance.

He has also held directorships with Capital Power, Wellington International Airport and Capacity Infrastructure Services.

Andy has also held leadership roles with the Karori Wildlife Sanctuary Trust, the NZ Traffic Institute, Karori Sports Club and the Karori Brooklyn Community Trust.



Hutt Valley businessman Alok Gupta will carry the New Zealand First flag in Hutt South.

“Mr Gupta’s passion for New Zealand and his commitment to New Zealand First values and principles demonstrate his worth to the community,” says New Zealand First Leader and Member of Parliament for Northland, Rt Hon Winston Peters.

“Mr Gupta’s selection adds to the diverse group of candidates we’ve selected to represent New Zealand First at this year’s election,” says Mr Peters.

Alok arrived in New Zealand in 2006 to work with the Department of Corrections and has previously been an Assistant Professor of English at DAVV University in India.

After seven years with Corrections, he established and became editor of the Indian X-press newspaper based in Lower Hutt.

Mr Gupta holds a masters degree in English and diploma qualifications in journalism and mass communications.



Lisa Close has been selected as New Zealand First’s Ōhāriu candidate for the 2017 General Election.

“Lisa works as an advisor for two of our MPs and is well known for her work lobbying to improve government responses to domestic violence”, says New Zealand First Leader and Member of Parliament for Northland Rt Hon Winston Peters. “I’m pleased to have her on board for this year’s election.”

“Lisa was directly involved with New Zealand becoming one of the first countries in the world to formally recognise the voice of domestic violence survivors in policy development.

“Lisa was an original member of the Ministry of Social Development’s Domestic Violence Unit. She was a Secretariat for the Glenn Inquiry and has worked with the Family Violence Death Review Committee”

“Lisa has called Ōhāriu home since she arrived in the electorate at age 12 and always knew she would eventually return after working and travelling overseas. She has a deep attachment to the area.

“Lisa will give Ōhāriu voters a real choice with their party votes this election”, says Mr Peters.

“At the last election, New Zealand First achieved 4.8 per cent of the party vote in Ōhāriu – 1,781 votes without standing a candidate. I know we can do much better," says Ms Close.



Small business owner and operator, Talani Meikle, will represent New Zealand First as its candidate for the Rimutaka electorate in the upcoming General Election.

“Talani Meikle is a talented candidate with a strong mix of business and social skills,” says New Zealand First Leader and Northland MP Rt Hon Winston Peters. “As a business owner and operator, she understands first-hand the challenges faced by small businesses in our regions, including in Upper Hutt where she lives with her family.

“Talani is well-known and respected for her hard work and dedication to supporting other small business owners throughout the electorate, including in her role as treasurer for the community organisation, Upper Hutt Business and Professional Women.

"New Zealand First has a strong economic plan that will capitalise on the natural assets and climate this country enjoys as well as the talent and enterprise of hard-working New Zealanders."

“It is an important opportunity for me to represent all the people who live in this electorate on the issues that matter most to them and their families, including decent jobs, housing, access to healthcare, education for their children, and to ensure our older citizens are treated with dignity and respect,” says Mrs Meikle.



New Zealand First has selected Geoff Mills to contest the Rongotai electorate in this year’s General Election.

“Geoff Mills has been a long time member of the party and his commitment to the policies and principles of New Zealand First will serve Rongotai voters well,” says New Zealand First Leader and Member of Parliament for Northland Rt Hon Winston Peters.

Mr Mills brings with him significant public service experience through his work with the Queensland State Government, Waitemata City Council, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and Police National Headquarters.

He owns and operates his own specialist records management and consultancy company.



Former Corrections Officer and Operational Adviser Randall Ratana is New Zealand First’s Mana candidate for the 2017 election.

“Randall Ratana was an Operational advisor and Corrections Officer for eight years and has an impressive reputation within the Department and the community,” says New Zealand First Leader and Member of Parliament for Northland Rt Hon Winston Peters.

Randall has been a long time active member of the party and “That, coupled with his previous experience as a candidate, shows he is the best choice to represent New Zealand First in the Mana electorate."

Mr Ratana holds a degree in Applied Management as well as a Masters of Electronic Commerce from the University of Waikato. ENDS


Scoop Editor's note: This press release was amended to change Randall Ratana's biography note at his request

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