On April 15, some of us attended the Maori Affairs Select Committee hearing in Auckland to support those presenting oral submissions in opposition to the Electoral (Entrenchment of Māori Seats) Amendment Bill. While more of the submitters at the hearing in Auckland spoke in favour of the bill than against, we were heartened to hear from Dan Bidois afterwards, (Dan is one of the National MPs on the committee), that the majority of the written submissions opposed entrenchment.Read more
Last month we celebrated as the Canterbury Regional Council Ngai Tahu Representation Bill was voted down in parliament. Following this welcome news, hopefully many have written to Simon Bridges, Winston Peters and David Seymour to show appreciation for their stand, and to congratulate Shane Jones and Nick Smith for their speeches against the bill, as reported on RadioNZ, available HERE. If you have not done so, it’s not too late, we are sure they’d love to hear from you.Read more
National List MP Jo Hayes, a member of the Maori Affairs Select Committee hearing submissions on the entrenchment of Maori seats, is pushing for National candidates to stand in the Māori seats.
"Māori need special treatment because colonisation actually occurred for them, now we are seeing the results of that and it needs to be fixed," said Hayes.
New Zealand First has scuppered Labour's bid to give Ngāi Tahu permanent seats on the Canterbury Regional Council, saying its special treatment for Māori. Shane Jones acknowledged the party's long-held position against separate seats for Māori on local body councils.Read more
A big thank you to those who contacted Hasting District councillors to encourage them to vote against the proposal to enable four members of the Maori Joint Committee to sit and vote on the council’s four standing committees. Unfortunately, enough councillors (10-4) felt able to turn their back on democracy by appointing unelected Maori to all committees.Read more
Submissions close on December 14th.
Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikātene, the sponsor of the bill, wants to make it more difficult to abolish the Maori seats by ensuring any changes will need the support of 75 percent of MPs rather than the current simple majority. He is actively appealing to Maori through the Maori media to make their views known, see HERE and HERE (Radio Waatea).Read more
Before the election, Winston Peters promised that if his party entered Government we would have a referendum to abolish the Māori seats. He needs to keep this promise.
NZ First’s current initiative to amend Labour’s bill on entrenching the seats is likely too far-fetched to succeed. We need stronger action: Winston Peters has the power to demand a referendum on Māori seats as a condition of NZ First’s continued support of the coalition.
Please sign the petition below to send Mr Peters a clear message that he needs to keep his promise on Māori seats.
We have seen the success of petitions and referendums in blocking race-based seats at the local level. Now we can end this distortion of democracy in Parliament.
"I call on New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters to keep his promise, and use his position of power to force a referendum on the existence of Māori seats."
We welcome Winston Peters’ call for a two-pronged referendum on whether Māori seats should be entrenched, or should go altogether.Read more