After retiring from teaching and stepping down from his role as president of the Multicultural Council of Rangitīkei/Whanganui, Vijeshwar Prasad says he's ready to give local government a go.
Born in Fiji, Prasad moved to New Zealand in 1989 and has spent the last 28 years living in Whanganui.
Now he wants a seat on Whanganui District Council at the October elections.
Housing is one issue Prasad said he would like to help fix.
"Housing is not one person's problem, it's a collective issue. If we come together with iwi, council and the Government, we should be able to solve the housing problem," he said.
Prasad said if elected, he would work to introduce a role which would link council with those struggling to find housing, with a focus on following up with those individuals until they've found a home.
Improving the relationship between council and iwi was an area Prasad identified as one of his strengths.
Along with being the founder and former president of the Multicultural Council of Rangitīkei/Whanganui, Prasad is also a member of the Association for Migration and Investments, and a member of the Association of Immigration Professionals.
One of Prasad's focuses is to look at a cost effective way of running council and controlling rates.
"Council has got very well paid workers and a lot of money is being spent on outside consultants. Why does so much money have to go to consultants and why isn't staff doing it?"
The candidate wants to see more businesses move to, or set up shop in Whanganui.
"Whanganui is a beautiful place and a good place to bring up children and I want to see more people coming in," he said.
"We have to promote Whanganui in a positive way, we have to bring in more businesses to Whanganui."
Prasad would like the council to provide incentives for businesses to relocate to the district and said it could be one way to fill empty stores on Victoria Ave.