January 27, 2015
Ratana spurned for speed dating
Ratana members feel disrespected by the Prime Minister’s no-show at their annual hui.
Mr Key’s non-appearance came as a surprise to hosts and other manuhiri.
Greens co-leader Metiriia Turei had prepared a speech directly attacking the Prime Minister’s view of history, expecting him to be there.
Instead he joined trade Minister Tim Groser at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, which he described as “speed dating in first class”.
Ratana spokersperson Andre Mason says King Tuheitia had come off his sick bed so that the hui could present a united front to the Government.
"I think that John Key should have been here. We were informed about a day before that he wasn't turning up and I'm sure those guys have a year's schedule where they can tell us in the middle of the year whether he is able to make it or not. I think on the king's side they were a bit disappointed the leader wasn't here but ka pai, everything carried on," he says.
Andre Mason says Andrew Little seemed shy and nervous on his first visit to Ratana as Labour leader but did his best.
Both John Key and Andrew Little will give state of the nation speeches in Auckland tomorrow.
FOR THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH ANDRE MASON CLICK ON THE LINK
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