Matthew Martin is a senior reporter at the Rotorua Daily Post

MP's role a 'great privilege'

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Enjoying the challenge of being a full-time politician is New Zealand First MP and Rotorua local Fletcher Tabuteau.
Enjoying the challenge of being a full-time politician is New Zealand First MP and Rotorua local Fletcher Tabuteau.

Being an MP has been a real eye-opener for Rotorua's Fletcher Tabuteau.

After little more than a year in Parliament as the New Zealand First list MP based in Rotorua he's been surprised at the amount of work he has got through and can't wait for new challenges this year.

"It was a real privilege to be a part of the Northland by-election team that resoundingly gazumped National. I'm proud that NZ First has been such a strong opposition this year - I have played my part by speaking more than most in the house this year on legislation on trade, energy, commerce and revenue.

"And I'm also proud of my efforts in highlighting the insidious undermining of our nation's sovereignty under the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement.

"But mostly my highlight has been opening my office here in Rotorua (on the sixth floor of the Hinemoa Tower) and my work here in Rotorua as a local MP," he said.

"I have met with hundreds of people, ranging from people being treated unfairly in their tenancies, to meetings with several of the biggest recent investors in the Rotorua community."

He's had less time off last year than he'd like and said even when Parliament was in recess the job never stops.

"You can't imagine what goes on in this job, it's a lot more than I anticipated. It's very busy, but it's also a great privilege that I take extremely seriously."

Mr Tabuteau said he worked up until just before Christmas and then after headed down to Christchurch for various meetings.

But for the few days he has had off he's been hanging out on Rotorua's lakes.

"Just savouring being at home with family and friends.

"We've got a little ski boat about as old as me and have been taking it out on the lakes for a ski."

He said this year the challenge was the same.

"Be a strong opposition, hold the government to account. Show them their shortcomings, which is all too often, but support them when they get it right.

"I also want to continue meeting with the fantastic people of Rotorua and ensure their voices are being heard."

- Rotorua Daily Post

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