Editorial: Harawira shows why he shouldn't be an MP

Hone Harawira in Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Hone Harawira in Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Can anyone have been surprised by the behaviour of Hone Harawira over the past week? Further evidence to confirm the now-independent MP's unsuitability for Parliament was not actually needed. No matter, he delivered it in spades.

First, he was not present to cast a vote when the new foreshore and seabed legislation had its second reading. This should have been an absolutely crucial matter for him.

He has long opposed the bill, and it was one of the main areas of conflict when he quit the Maori Party last month before its national council ruled on a disciplinary committee recommendation to expel him.

Mr Harawira said he had been distracted by business outside Parliament. Possibly, this was meant to refer to his attempt to set up a new party. He then set about terminating what was clearly an agreement of convenience with his former parliamentary colleagues.

Under the pact, they were not to criticise each other. Further, the Maori Party would not stand against him in his Tai Tokerau electorate, while any new party he formed would not challenge the Maori Party's four MPs.

Mr Harawira gave that deal scant regard this week by lambasting the Maori Party.

His reason? The office space and seat in the House allotted to him were not up to scratch. His action means the Maori Party should now feel free to stand a strong candidate against him in Tai Tokerau.

Both he and the country will be better off if the electorate delivers the appropriate judgment.

- NZ Herald

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