Election 2014

2 Nov 2011

Winston Peters not standing in electorate

10:57 am on 2 November 2011

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters has opted to stand on the party list only and will not contest an electorate seat at the election.

The party on Tuesday released its party list, ending months of speculation over where Mr Peters would stand.

Mr Peters says it was an agonising decision, but the board of New Zealand First decided it was better to use its resources to campaign around the country, and he did not want to be an absentee candidate.

Radio New Zealand's political staff say the decision effectively leaves New Zealand First dependent on winning at least 5% of the party vote to make a comeback to Parliament.

Mr Peters was MP for Tauranga for more than two decades before losing the seat to National in 2005.

He says many people in the party wanted him to stand in Epsom against ACT's John Banks, National's Paul Goldsmith and Labour candidate David Parker.

However he decided he did not want to get involved in "an absolute circus and an abomination to the principles of democracy" where one party took over another party and candidates are saying they "just want the party vote".

Winston Peters is ranked number one on the New Zealand First list, with Rodney candidate Tracey Martin ranked second and former North Shore mayor Andrew Williams in the third slot.

The list includes six former MPs, of whom Barbara Stewart at number five is the highest ranked after Mr Peters.

For the full list, see Radio New Zealand's Party Lists page.