MPs take democracy onto the sports field

A 40-strong sports contingent from Chatham Islands arrived in Wellington this weekend to take on the New Zealand Parliamentarian rugby and netball teams.

Win or lose, rather the aim of the exchange was less about the final score, but more about varying parties uniting after continuous debate over the year.

The Beehive isn't the only place where politicians battle for supremacy, which might have spilt across the sports field.

Meka Whaitiri – Labour says, “It's all about the win, we don't do participation, that's for primary kids we're politicians.”

The battle was intense for the NZ Parliamentary teams, playing for the country that they all are so passionate about.

Alfred Ngaro – Nāhinara says, “So as you do you got to show your, hold on to your mana a little bit, don’t let people walk all over you.”

Probably the only time of the year where the House completely agrees on one topic

”We don't often do that in Parliament, we are always adversaries, so it’s good for MPs to put that all down and play sports,” says Whaitiri.

But several faces were missing from the football line-up, both sides issuing the challenge.

Jack Tarrant says, “Few Labour in here, few others I guess, but be nice to see those players especially John Key.”

“We're sore, we're buggered, and they've bought a lot of crayfish over so we're going to enjoy that too!” says Kris Fa’afoi – Labour.

Across to the netball court it was much the same. Our very own political reporter, Ripeka Timutimu made an appearance. While other politicians were called out to take up the challenge.

Grab Louisa Wall – Labour says, “Probably Paula Bennett actually, if I was to say one thing because I reckon people just want to smash them actually, just quietly.”

That could be true, however the competition creates a new camaraderie to last beyond political domain.