Winston Peters should retire and help Ngāpuhi to settle, ex-NZ First MP argues

By Whatitiri Te Wake

Former NZ First MP Tuariki Delamare says leader Winston Peters shouldn't try and make a comeback in politics.

Reflecting on Peters' first public speech in the weekend since last year's election, Delamere says he was saddened by the rhetoric in it.

“He's trying to target those rednecked pākeha and the room was full of them the other night. It's sad that Winston has to go down that pathway because he hasn't got any solutions other than to attack this like that.

“The renaissance of Māori in the country has been wonderful.”

Delamere, who entered Parliament in 1996 with NZ First Delamere but split acrimoniously from it in 1998. says Ngāpuhi should reach out to Peters to facilitate the Ngāpuhi treaty claim.

“He has got the mana and if he really wants to contribute to the nation and to his own people I think he will be the perfect facilitator."

Peters made his first appearance and speech at the party's AGM in Auckland at the weekend, promising a major comeback.

“We’re a phoenix that will again rise as the public wake up to the inexactitude of this government and a hapless National Part,”

Peters didn’t hold back on his criticism on the current government, likening it to a car with no handbrake.

He also took a swipe at the government's continued use of Te Reo Māori.

“So why, for example, is the NZTA being called Waka Kotahi?”

“And when was the last time a government initiative used an English name that heaven forbid where over 90 percent of the population might just understand?”

Peters was not confirming whether he would lead the party at the next elections. Delamere says if he doesn't - it's over.

“He sort of came out swinging, but what he didn't do was confirm that he will be running himself at the next election. And the reality for NZ First is if he doesn't run himself it's finished. It has zero chance” he said.