Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri didn’t hesitate to fire shots at National this morning and explained why the Māori electorate MPs are jumping back on the Labour list.
“Unlike the Opposition, our party’s list is diverse and reflects Aotearoa,” she explains.
Whaitiri said that last election Labour was seeking a mandate from Māori to be their voice in Parliament. which meant increasing that voice in Parliament. A tactic, she says, was necessary at the time.
Now the situation is different.
Changing the country, rather than changing the Government is Labour’s priority.
“Our whānau wants a team that’s making a difference,” she says.
Labour’s strategy will be to show the strength of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s leadership. \
The Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP referred to the three disasters that her Government has coped with, namely, the Christchurch Terror Attacks, Whakaari/White Island and COVID-19.
For those Māori who may be inclined towards National’s economic focus, Whaitiri warns.
“They actually have a hard time recognising Māori, let alone the Māori economy.”
Labour's 2017 strategy led to 13 Māori MPs coming into Parliament, and the expulsion of the Māori Party.
The question is, will this new strategy will increase Māori representation and political power?