Monday April 20, 2015   Last updated 12:45PM
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Ben E. King
National not convincing on oaths rejection

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Te Ururoa Flavell says he can’t understand why National whipped it’s MPs into opposing his Oaths and Declarations Bill.

The Māori Party MP wanted to give members of Parliament and others taking up public office the option of affirming the Treaty of Waitangi.

National, ACT, United Future and New Zealand First voted against the first reading.

Mr Flavell says apart from Tau Henare saying he supported the bill but wasn’t allowed to vote for it, National’s speakers weren’t convincing.

“You could tell by their body language and all the arguments they put up that all they were doing was filling a space for five or 10 minutes to say why they were given instructions to vote against it but I’m pretty confident that in their heart of hearts most of them would have supported this bill. If National can’t deal with this sort of optional issue, then I think that they won’t be able to deal with the bigger issues,” he says.

Mr Flavell says he sees the vote as a breach of the support agreement the Māori Party has with National.




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