25 Nov 2011

Number of Maori seats 'could fall'

5:06 pm on 25 November 2011

Senior Labour politician, Shane Jones, says he fears the number of Maori seats in Parliament might never increase, and could decrease if Maori MPs are seen to be fighting between themselves.

There are seven Maori seats, and the number is partly dependent on how many people are on the Maori roll.

Mr Jones - Labour's candidate for Tamaki Makaurau - says the number of Maori seats could go down if Maori voters think MPs are scrapping too much or not using their place in Parliament to improve their lives.

However Mana Party leader Hone Harawira, who is seeking re-election as the MP for Te Tai Tokerau, does not think the number of seats will fall.

He is worried, though, that they might not increase, as he says Maori are giving up on politics because they aren't seeing any real change.