Maori Party to celebrate birthday in Rotorua

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MILESTONE: Maori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples (left) and Maori Party co-leaders Tariana Turia and Waiariki MP Te Ururoa Flavell will be celebrating the party's achievements this Saturday at Ohinemutu. PHOTO/FILE
MILESTONE: Maori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples (left) and Maori Party co-leaders Tariana Turia and Waiariki MP Te Ururoa Flavell will be celebrating the party's achievements this Saturday at Ohinemutu. PHOTO/FILE

The Maori Party is 10 years old with a celebratory event and the official launch of their election campaign to be held in Rotorua.

Held at Whakaturia, Te Papaiouru Marae, Ohinemutu on Saturday, the evening will include speeches from the founders of the party and guest speaker, New Zealander of the Year Dr Lance O'Sullivan. There will also be special acknowledgement of the achievements of retiring leader Tariana Turia and the Maori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples.

The event includes a smorgasbord dinner, music by Rotorua's Dianne Tibble and local band Jassah.

Tomorrow officially marks the 10th anniversary of the registration of the Maori Party.
Party president Naida Glavish said they were celebrating a decade of achievement for Maori people.

"What began in fighting to restore due access to justice that had been taken from us with the Foreshore and Seabed Act 2004, and in retaining the Maori seats in Parliament, has proceeded to the social and economic benefits of Whanau Ora and many enduring gains for our people in health, education, housing and employment," Ms Glavish said.

"Last year, Pita passed the reins of tane [male] co-leadership to Te Ururoa Flavell, of Waiariki, and after the coming election, Tariana's wahine [female] co-leadership is expected to pass to one of our three outstanding candidates seeking election to Parliament.

"It remains our kaupapa [plan] to continue to be an influential force in all future governments irrespective of which of the major parties lead them.

"The Maori Party was born during Matariki 2004. We celebrate our 10th birthday during Matariki 2014, firmly resolved at the forthcoming election to win all seven Maori seats in Parliament, one for each of the seven stars of Matariki. We are going for all seven - the full Matariki," she said.

The birthday celebration event will start at 5pm with formal dress expected. Tickets are $50. For inquiries call Aroha Bray on (027) 420 3041 or maoridom@hotmail.com.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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