Mana and Maori Party agreement details electorate deals

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In a bid to win back all seven Maori seats, Mana Movement will contest only the Te Tai Tokerau seat at this year's election while Maori Party will not stand in that electorate.

The announcement was made this morning as the two parties signed an agreement in Whangarei.

Peace moves between the two parties have been going on since last July when Maori Party president Tukoroirangi Morgan approached Mana's leader Hone Harawira.

Lisa McNab, Mana Movement president, said the agreement would allow the two parties to carry a strong mandate to win all seven Maori seats.

"It allows Mana to focus on Te Tai Tokerau at the 2017 general election, a decision we'd actually made at our AGM last year.

"And it adds weight to the Maori Party's decision to stand candidates in the other six Maori seats and we wish them all the best in their endeavours."

Mana Movement will only stand in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate while Maori Party will stand in Tamaki Makaurau, Hauraki-Waikato, Waiariki, Ikaroa-Rawhiti, Te Tai Hauauru and Te Tai Tonga but not Te Tai Tokerau.

Labour holds six of the Maori seats and Te Ururoa Flavell, Maori Party co-leader, holds the seventh (Waiariki). Mr Harawira lost the Te Tai Tokerau seat in 2014, narrowly beaten by Labour's Kelvin Davis.

The Maori Party's candidate in the electorate drew more than 2500 votes, and it's possible most of them would have gone to Mr Harawira if he had been given a clear run.

Ms McNab said both parties will be free to develop the policies they think best; to campaign for the party vote; and to criticise one another's policies without attacking each other's candidates.

"We've got a big job ahead of us" said Ms McNab "Things are even tougher now for our people than they were when Hone left, so we take nothing for granted."

The agreement states any and all contravening clauses/rules contained within existing party rules, constitutions or ture will be suspended and replaced with the terms contained within the agreement and will conclude on September 23, the day of the election.

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