Saturday, October 30, 2010

Māori Party has a new president

The Māori Party has a new president. He is Pem Bird and was elected at the Māori Party conference. Bird beat Mereana Pitman, a former contender of the party's Ikaroa Rawhiti candidacy last election. Before the vote, Pitman told the conference that one of the reasons she was standing was to support Hone Harawira - who is campaigning against his colleague's deal on the repeal of the Foreshore and Seabed Act.

She also said she did not trust Prime Minister John Key and did not support the Maori Party's coalition with National but that she would meet with and work with Key for the sake of the party.

Bird supports the replacement legislation of the Foreshore and Seabed.

The party now has to elect a vice president to replace Heta Kingston,. Kingston is a retired judge whose decision on the Ngati Apa foreshore and seabed claim in the Maori Land Court led to the Court of Appeal decision which led to the Foreshore and Seabed Act, which led to the Maori Party.

It will be interesting to see how the new leaders handle the Iwi Leaders Group.




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