May 24, 2020
Maori seat challenge for Muller
New National Party leader Todd Muller is being urged to review his party’s policy on not running candidates in the Māori seats.
New Zealand Māori Council executive director Matthew Tukaki says National needs to stop hoping the Māori party will come back and do the job for it, and it needs to build up its Maori representation and stand candidate who will explain its policy agenda for Māori.
He says despite being National's first Māori leader, ousted leader Simon Bridges was a disappointment.
The council was annoyed with the way he failed to call Māori before his Epidemic Response Committee even while attacking the Government for giving police the power to search marae.
"It was all about politics. It wasn't about hearing the incredible stories of the Maori work that was going on, and even in that proves Simon and his colleagues were out there every single day beating hate on us over the rāhui. You cannot continue this process national of pouring scorn on us one day and attempting to be our defender on the other day," Mr Tukaki says.
National needs to remember it will be called on to act as the treaty partner, so it needs a consistent and continuous relationship with Māori whether it is in Government or Opposition.
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