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Polls And Tyranny - Hone Harawira

Polls And Tyranny

It’s looking great for 2008, with the Marae Digi-Poll coming out over the weekend with some quite stunning results. For the first time since polls have been taken, the Maori Party now holds a clear majority in 6 of the 7 Maori Seats, including the prize seat of Ikaroa-Rawhiti, currently held by the Minister of Maori Affairs.

It’s a tie for the 7th, Tainui, and it’s worth noting that with the new boundaries, the Maori Party would actually be ahead in Tainui as well (and we don’t even have a candidate there yet!).

It’s always been our aim to be the independent Maori voice in parliament, and with the results of the weekend survey, it looks like we’re well on the way to achieving our aim of taking all seven Maori seats in the 2008 Elections.

Mind you, Labour’s Maori MPs did themselves no favours at all over the armed police raids into Maori communities in the Urewera, by simply parroting the government line about “wait – the police know what they’re doing”; three-quarters of all Maori voters said the raids were an “unnecessary over-reaction.”

I also copped a whole heap of flak from some of parliament’s petty little tyrants, Peters, Dunne and Anderton about some of my comments about the raids.

Here’s what I actually said: “I will not sit quietly by, while State forces terrorise my people. If this requires of me that I speak out against the rule of law that would impose terror on Māori communities in this country, then I will speak out. I will speak out against it in this chamber, on television, in newspapers, and anywhere else I possibly can.”

And I stand by those comments, because they reflect the feelings within many of the Maori communities I have visited around the Tai Tokerau over the past few weeks.

Peters and Co seem to think I should abandon my “Maori-ness” now that I’m an MP, and play the polite little parliament game. Fat chance; being a Maori can be a pain in the a*** sometimes, but it beats being somebody else’s lapdog.



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