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Goff Misleads On Maori Seats

PR: Goff Misleads On Maori Seats

Phil Goff supports dedicated Maori seats as part of Auckland Council but won't take action if elected mayor to deliver this says Auckland mayoral candidate Mark Thomas.

Thomas says as he understands it, a Goff-led Auckland Council could propose to establish Maori wards under the Local Electoral Act 2001 (section 19Z).

"If Goff was serious about his commitment to Maori seats he could propose this next year."
"He talks a big game supporting Maori seats, but when I pushed him at a recent mayoral debate he blamed the lack of Government support as the reason they won't happen."

"That's not true. Although he may be unaware, the Mayor of Auckland can propose Maori wards."

"Goff claims a poll would be too expensive to justify, but a poll is only required if 5% of Auckland electors demand that."

Thomas suspects the reason Goff won't advance Maori seats in Auckland is that he is afraid it will not be supported.

"Aucklanders may need to get use to this style of leadership if Goff wins the mayoral election in two weeks where he promises one thing but fails to deliver it and blames the government."
Thomas says Auckland Council effectively has Maori seats at the moment with the Mayor giving the Independent Maori Statutory Board voting membership on 15 or councils 18 committees including the 4 committees of the whole which usually make all key council decisions.

"I have seen this create division and frustrate decision making. Auckland Council needs more Maori and other groups in Auckland elected to make decisions on behalf of all of us.. Dedicated Maori seats are not the way to achieve this."

© Scoop Media

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