Mana Party distances itself from Harawira's execution calls

The Mana Party is distancing itself from Hone Harawira's policy idea of executing Chinese people who import methamphetamine, even though he's the leader.

He made the controversial comments about nationality-based state killings on The Nation on Saturday and refused to back down from them, later telling the AM Show he was "absolutely serious".

But his own party is now joining the chorus of those who disagree.

"The Mana Party executive do not support at all capital punishment in any way," the party's president Lisa McNab said on Wednesday.

Ms McNab told Newshub that the party is "very much supportive of stamping out P", but expressed unhappiness that the call for killing Chinese people is what is being focussed on.

"It's so unfortunate that mainstream media picks up on a comment but the issue is left behind, and the issue is the devastation that P is wrecking," she said.

Ms McNab said the party supports stronger measures to prevent imports of methamphetamine, but do not in any way support execution.

In a statement, the Mana Party praised the work Mr Harawira was doing in the fight against P in Māori communities.

"We are seeing the fruits of his work in the 'Fight the P Fight Night' held recently in Kaitaia, his work with the rugby league community across the Far North and with the gangs, and his Open the Curtains initiative which is helping bring people together to build a park for their kids in one of the toughest parts of Kaitaia," says the party.

"Hone's comments have dragged the Fight against P into the public arena, and they match the energy and the commitment he has brought to his work in the community.

"We support Hone's call for political action to halt the importation of drugs into Aotearoa, and we call on other politicians to start attacking the devastation being caused by P."