Live updates: Whakatau 2020 election coverage

By Te Ao - Māori News

As part of the election day 2020 coverage, Māori Television will be online and on-air bringing New Zealanders the first results and developments as they happen.

Coverage will focus on the results of the seven Māori electorates and which Māori candidates running for general seats have made it through.

Viewers can watch the live stream here and on the Te Ao Facebook page.

The latest

10.30pm Labour landslide, Māori Party heart-stopping victory

Labour has won a stunning election victory. With 64 seats, it becomes the first party to win an MMP election outright.

The result means Labour can govern alone.

The Māori Party has had a night to remember too. It will have to wait for special votes to be counted but, on tonight's results, it looks to have won its way back into Parliament. This comes after Rawiri Waititi had the win of a lifetime over Labour's Tamati Coffey in Waiariki.

National has had a disastrous night, struggling to win 35 seats. The Greens and ACT, with 10 seats apiece were big winners.

NZ First failed to capture 5% of the party vote, which means Winston Peters and Shane Jones will be missing from the new parliament. 

Six of the seven Māori electorates have been won by Labour. The party achieved commanding wins in Te Tai Tokerau, Hauraki-Waikato, Ikaroa-Rāwhiti and Te Tai Tonga, but lost Waiariki and had other close contests with the Māori Party in Te Tai Hauāuru and Tāmaki Makaurau. 

Results are provisional, with special votes still to be counted. Final results will be announced on November 6.

9.30pm - Waititi in Māori Party nail-biter in Waiariki

The Māori Party is making an early charge to win its way back into Parliament, with candidates in three of the seven Māori seats close on the heels of their Labour counterparts.

Waiariki candidate Rawiri Waititi is running the closest race, less than 20 votes behind Labour's Tamati Coffey, with 42% of the vote counted.

In Te Tai Hauāuru, where 39% of the votes have been tallied, Māori Party co-leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer is within 500 votes of Adrian Rurawhe, who won the seat for Labour in the past two elections. 

Tāmaki Makaurau candidate and fellow co-leader John Tamihere is putting in a strong challenge to Labour MP Peeni Henare, 800 votes behind, with 39% counted.

Labour is in commanding positions in Te Tai Tokerau, Hauraki-Waikato, Ikaroa-Rāwhiti and Te Tai Tonga.

7.30pm - "Māori are the winners tonight"

Māori Party co-leader John Tamihere says he's proud of how well Māori have done through the campaign this year.

He's up against Labour's Peeni Henare and Green Party's Marama Davidson for the Tāmaki Makaurau seat.

"Regardless of the result of Peeni and Marama, they're good people and so I wish them all the best... So Māori are going to be the winner tonight regardless. Hopefully, it will be the Māori Party winners."

7.15pm - Panel of experts

The panel of experts are National MP and broadcaster Claudette Hauiti, political scientist Dr Lara Greaves, political commentator Chris Wikaira and former Labour list MP, Georgina Beyer.

Beyer says she’s most interested in what will happen with New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters.

“Whether or not he might make a difference as far as coalition arrangements are concerned. Somehow I doubt it but you never know we’ll wait until the numbers come out, she says.

“I think it will be Labour Greens forming a coalition. Greens might just scrape in. I’m interested of course in the Māori Party and I certainly want to see them get a seat or two and I think that’s very possible this evening.”

Voting

The Electoral Commission has reported 1,976,996 people voted before today. Fewer than 1.3 million cast advance votes in 2017.

Māori advance voting was also strong, and Māori enrolments on both rolls were higher this year, compared to the last election, with 509,403 Maori voters enrolled, compared to 476,798 in 2017.

This year's total accounts for about 60 percent of enrolled voters, so is likely to surpass expectations of 60 percent of the total vote.

Preliminary referendum results will be published on October 30.

Nearly two million people voted early, with almost 78,000 of those early votes by voters on the Māori roll, according to a midweek update from the Electoral Commission.