MP Teanau Tuiono won’t put his name forward to be the party’s co-leader because major Green Party spokesman portfolios will keep him extremely busy.
Tuiono says being the Green Party spokesman for education, national security and intelligence, the Pacific region, space, and workplace relations keeps him busy, and he’s happy to support his colleagues.
He’s also a senior Māori in a caucus and a party that is attracting many younger Maori.
“There is a new and up-and-coming rangatahi generation and we need strong tangata Tiriti voices, we need strong tangata moana voices and strong tangata whenua voices so our place in the Greens is trying to amplify those voices and we have all those voices in our caucus,” he says.
Tuiono says as far as he knows, the only person putting their name forward to replace James Shaw is Chlöe Swarbrick, who has a good understanding of Treaty issues.
Swarbrick last week announced she would contest the co-leadership position made vacant after James Shaw announced he was stepping down from the role.
“I’m stepping up,” Swarbrick said, after acknowledging she had had conversations with all of her caucus alongside family and friends.
“I am a proud member of the Green Party. More than any other party we understand that there is far greater leadership out there in the community than there is in the so-called halls of power. I am here to serve my communities. Over the past three days, they have asked me to stand up and put myself forward for this role,” she said.
Peter Verschaffelt – Waatea.News.Com