June 27, 2016
Howie Tamati seeking Maori Party candidacy
New Plymouth district councillor Howie Tamati wants to step up to national politics.
The former rugby league star announced at the weekend's Pomare Day commemoraiton in Waitara he's putting his name forward to be the Maori Party's candidate for Te Tai Hauauru.
The seat is held by Labour's Adrian Rurawhe.
He says coming from a Waitara freezing works family he comes from a Labour background, but his heart is now with the Maori Party.
"I believe it's the only independent Maori voice in the parliament. They're not National Party. They're not Labour. They're not Greens. They're the Maori party. What the Maori Party do is guarantee the Government of the day confidence and supply, the ability to set Budgets. Everything else is on the table for negotiation and if it doesn't suit the Maori Party, they have the right to vote against it," Mr Tamati says.
His time on local government has given him an appreciation of the need for Maori representation at that level.
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