INDEPENDENT NEWS

Maori Party votes to remove Maori representation

Published: Fri 11 Dec 2009 09:43 AM
Carmel Sepuloni
Associate Tertiary Education
Kelvin Davis
Associate Education
10 December 2009Media Statement
Maori Party votes for legislation that removes Maori representation in tertiary education
Maori Party support for a Bill that removes guaranteed Maori representation on polytechnic councils is incomprehensible, Labour associate spokesperson for Tertiary Education Carmel Sepuloni says.
Labour Associate Education MP Kelvin Davis says, true to form in the House, the Maori Party gave every reason why this Bill is wrong, but then decided to vote for it.
“This is further evidence that the Maori Party is indistinguishable from the National Party and regardless of the detrimental effects the Bill will have on Maori they will still vote for it if their masters tell them to.
“For the Maori Party to jump up and down about the lack of representation for Maori on the Auckland Super City, but to vote for a Bill that removes guaranteed Maori representation on the boards of polytechnics is just plain dumb,” Kelvin Davis said.
Carmel Sepuloni said the Education (Polytechnics) Amendment Bill aimed to cut the membership numbers on polytechnic councils.
“While the Bill states that it is desirable in principle to have Maori members of the councils, it removes any provisions for guaranteed representation. The Maori Party must be able to see what this Bill actually means – less space around the table means less opportunity for Maori to be involved with the decision-making process.”
“Polytechnics around New Zealand are major providers of training for industries where Maori are predominant. The Bill currently before the House scraps guarantees that Maori will be able to contribute to the governance of polytechnics. This is simply unacceptable.”
“The Maori Party needs to remember who their constituents are. By siding with the National Party on this issue, they are ignoring the best interests of Maori around New Zealand. Maori had a guaranteed voice on polytechnic councils, until this Bill removed it,” Carmel Sepuloni said.
ENDS

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