After an impassioned debate, Auckland Council voted 11-9 against establishing Māori seats at the 2025 local body elections. Instead, they accepted a proposal put forward by Mayor Wayne Brown to look at Māori representation as part of a wider governance review to be undertaken by a working party made up of councillors and local board members. The working party has been asked to report back to the governing body by 31 December 2024, thereby missing the deadline to establish Māori seats for the 2025 election.
This decision follows two months of consultation which garnered over 11,000 submissions from the public.
Several of the councillors who voted against the Māori seat proposal cited the overwhelming number of submitters who were opposed to the idea. A heartfelt thanks to all who submitted, it proves we can make a difference. You can read a summary of submissions HERE.
Councillors who voted against the introduction of Māori seats for the 2025 election were: Deputy Mayor Desley Simpson, Andy Baker, Christine Fletcher, Mike Lee, Daniel Newman, Greg Sayers, Sharon Stewart, Ken Turner, Wayne Walker, John Watson, and Maurice Williamson.
If you would like to send messages of support, the councillors’ contact details can be found HERE.
Those who voted for the introduction of Māori seats for the 2025 election were: Josephine Bartley, Angela Dalton, Chris Darby, Julie Fairey, Alf Filipaina, Lotu Fuli, Shane Henderson, Richard Hills, and Kerrin Leoni.
Mayor Brown abstained from the vote.
Click here to watch a recording of the meeting. (The debate on Māori seats begins at 1 hour 12 minutes.)
Similar debates are happening around the country. Carterton, Kaikōura, and Waitomo District Councils have voted against the introduction of Māori wards, whereas Greater Wellington Regional Council, and Hauraki and Whanganui District Councils have voted for.