January 21, 2013
Leadership change vital for Māori Party
A Māori historian and political commentator believes the Māori Party needs to sort out its leadership succession this year if it is to be relevant after the next election.
Pita Sharples is resisting a call from his co-leader Tariana Turia to step aside to allow a new generation to come through.
Rawiri Taonui from AUT University says historically Māori political movements have needed a clear take and a charismatic leader.
"The Māori Party is coming to a time where these two great charismatic leaders, their time is passing. Whoever fills their shoes, like Te Ururoa, he's really capable, Kapua Smith, who's touted as the successor for Tariana, she seems like a really reasonable, intelligent young woman but you just have to question whether they have the same charisma," he says.
Mr Taonui says the foreshore and seabed is no longer a major issue, the Māori Party needs to find new direction so that it can retain a couple of seats and have a chance of joining the next government.
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