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Hawkins Will Not Stand For Cabinet

Hawkins Will Not Stand For Cabinet

Manurewa MP George Hawkins has announced he will not be seeking re-election to cabinet.

Mr Hawkins, the serving Minister of Police, Internal Affairs, Civil Defence and Veterans' Affairs, says his caucus colleagues have indicated he would have support to retain a place in cabinet but he has decided against putting his name forward.

"I'm looking forward to devoting more time to my electorate, but I am proud to be a member of a government that has achieved so much for New Zealand over the past six years and look forward to continuing to contribute from the back bench.

"The Police portfolio always receives an excessive amount of public attention but I am satisfied with what's been achieved since 1999. The Police budget is $280 million greater than when we came to, power and Police numbers have grown from 8700 in 1999 to over 10,000 this year.

"I have advocated very strongly for proper resourcing of Police and the results have confirmed the success of that strategy: crime is at its lowest level in 25 years, Police are resolving more offences and our uncompromising stand on road policing has resulted in the safest roads since the 1960s.

"I want to thank my colleagues for their help and Helen Clark, in particular, for the constant support she has offered me."

George Hawkins was elected to the Papakura City Council in 1980, served as Mayor of Papakura from 1983 through to 1992 and entered Parliament as Labour MP for Manurewa in 1990.

After Labour's 1999 election success, Mr Hawkins was made Minister for Police, Ethnic Affairs and Civil Defence. The Internal Affairs portfolio was added in 2000. He retained his Police, Internal Affairs and Civil Defence portfolios after the 2002 election and picked up Veterans Affairs.

Mr Hawkins, who is the longest-serving Labour Police Minister since 1949, retained his Manurewa electorate with a majority of over 11,700 in the 2005 election.

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