Hone Harawira 'unlikely' to run again

  • 24/09/2017

Mana Party leader Hone Harawira said he's "unlikely" to run for Parliament again.

Mr Harawira told The Hui's Mihingarangi Forbes that he was disappointed with last night's election results, where he failed to win his old Te Tai Tokerau seat back from Labour's Kelvin Davis. 

"It's unlikely that I'll run again," he said. "I need to talk with Mana, I need to talk with the Māori Party. 

"We need to consider how we get that Māori voice back into the house. It's not there at the moment and I don't see anybody being strong enough to be that voice from those who have been chosen so far."

It was a devastating night for the Māori Party, which won only 1.1 percent of the party vote.

The Labour Party won all Māori seats, giving it an unprecedented 13 Māori MPs.

Both Māori Party co-leaders lost their electorates to Labour candidates, with Te Ururoa Flavell unseated by Tamati Coffey in Wairiki and Marama Fox losing Ikaroa-Rāwhiti to Meka Whaitiri.

The Māori Party now faces obliteration, falling well short of the 5 percent threshold for a parliamentary presence.

Mr Harawira was saddened by the prospect of a Parliament without the Māori Party.

"I'm sad for them. I'm not so much sad for myself, but I'm sad for them. 

"I think they started down the track of doing something really positive. I think they made a few mistakes as well, but be that as it may, they built some capacity. 

"That capacity, if Te Ururoa doesn't get in, will now no longer be there. That will be a case of considering how best to build that voice."

He also said he would miss Metiria Turei of the Green Party, who did not win the Te Tai Tonga electorate. 

"It's sad that Metiria won't be there. I'm not sure Te Ururoa will be able to hold his seat, but if he doesn't, I think it's going to be sad for Maoridom that there isn't an independent Māori voice in the Parliament."

He was not hopeful for Māori under the new Government, regardless of which parties make up a coalition.

"National has been worse, but we've had homelessness with Labour, poverty with Labour, child poverty with Labour, unemployment, massive unemployment with Labour, drug problems with Labour, so nothing's going to change. 

"That's sad."