Te Ururoa Flavell's tears have dried and the hurt of losing the job he loved is fading.

Now 2018 is looking pretty exciting.

The former Waiariki MP, Minister of Maori Development and Maori Party co-leader is focused on passing on skills that helped him spend 12 years in Parliament making a difference for Maori.

Flavell has confirmed to the Rotorua Daily Post he is starting a consultancy business where he will offer his skills to organisations, businesses, groups or individuals who want to bridge the gap between Maori and Pakeha.


He is also taking up roles within Victoria and Waikato universities helping with course assessments and lecturing in politics.

"There are non-Maori in New Zealand and those overseas too who want to work with Maori. My new company is about giving others a bridge into Maori communities. I like that stuff and I think I am good at it."

He spent several years doing exactly that with the National Government.

While his critics thought the Maori Party's coalition agreement with the right wing was like making friends with the enemy, Flavell and his party's co-leader, Marama Fox, always maintained it was a relationship that saw them in a decision-making role at the table with the Government.

However, that alliance eventually cost Flavell and all the Maori Party MPs their careers when Labour became the Government.

Despite the shock election loss, Flavell has no regrets.

8 Oct, 2017 9:03am
3 minutes to read

"I am hugely proud of what we have done.

"I have accepted now I am not going to be there [in Parliament]. As Minister [of Maori Development] and MP I really enjoyed the position. You meet some wonderful people and go to some beautiful places. In that regard I feel so privileged and honoured to serve as MP and as a minister who made changes.

"I have seen the best of New Zealand, presidents, princes and princesses and have met everyday New Zealanders who have made differences in the work they do."

Flavell said now he was out of the political lifestyle, he realised how "crazy" it was.

"Being away from home four to five nights a week is hard. I feel better now physically and mentally and good in myself where I am now. I have met some beautiful people and saw some wonderful things but I can't go back to that."

Flavell said it was now time to look at new opportunities and he was busying his days with setting up his new business.

In between, he's turning his love of fitness into a pocket-money maker.

The former PE teacher ended 2017 by taking a kaumatua fitness class that attracted up to 10 elders who trained to get in shape over five weeks. He's now doing private personal training sessions and is looking at doing a boot camp based in Ngongotaha.

He admits the first month after the election was the hardest.

"It's been a very difficult period for me. People lose their jobs all over the country every day. In my case it was 12 years of not only going to work but building a movement. That's why it affected me so much.

"But I'm in a good space and I'm able to do a lot of things I simply didn't have time to do before."

He's "done my dash" in politics and didn't see a future in local body politics either.

However, he will always be there to build and support the Maori Party – the party that believed in him.

The party is taking nominations for president and vice-president and in mid-February it was to pick its executive, leaders and eventually candidates for the next election.

"You don't give 12 years of your life to something and just walk away. I won't be at the front but I will be giving a hand where I can."