June 01, 2021
Hipango welcome replacement for Smith
National Party deputy leader Shane Reti says Nick Smith will be missed from parliament after 30 years of fine achievements.
The former Nelson MP announced yesterday he would step down on June 10, revealing he was the subject of a parliamentary services inquiry into treatment of a staff member.
Mr Reti says Dr Smith had been a strong voice for Māori inside and outside caucus, and will be remembered for many achievements including creating 17 marine reserves and his so far unsuccessful bid to create an ocean sanctuary around the Kermadecs.
Next on the list to step in is former Whanganui MP Harete Hipango.
"We're excited to have her as part of the team – another voice with a good understanding of te ao Māori in caucus. Of course her legal background and many years in the family court, she's held the portfolios of Māori tourism. she's held the portfolio of Crown-Māori, and so her experience will be welcome and she will be welcomed into our caucus," Dr Reti says.
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