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Ed Sheeran

Tamihere eyes assimilation-free seats
Photo: John Tamihere Facebook.

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Māori Party co-leader John Tamihere says if the party gets back into parliament it may stay on the cross-benches.

Mr Tamihere, who is trying to regain the seat of Tāmaki Makaurau after a 15-year absence, is unhappy with the direction new leader Todd Muller is taking the National Party.

He says the re-energised Māori Party would not be happy with the position of ministers outside cabinet it had under the John Key-led National government, and it would also reject being assimilated by Labour.

“I would rather sit on the crossbenches and keep my mana intact, rather than sell my soul for our people. I’d rather have a liberated voice in the parliament calling out the assimilationists and the segregationists rather than be a part of their game,” Mr Tamihere says.

He says Māori people need to wake up to the power of their vote if it is consolidated behind a Māori movement.

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