2 May 2017

Unhappy candidates delay release of Labour list - Andrew Little

From Morning Report, 7:23 am on 2 May 2017

Maori urban leader and broadcaster Willie Jackson has apparently accepted a lower-than-expected position on the Labour Party list.

After saying he'd been promised a top ranking by leader Andrew Little, Mr Jackson has been placed at number 21.

It's understood his initial displeasure at the ranking prompted a quick trip to Wellington to talk to party officials, delaying the publication of the list.

Party insiders have told RNZ News Mr Jackson has accepted the position, despite several newcomers being placed above him.

The top spots are taken by Andrew Little, Jacinda Ardern, Grant Robertson, Phil Twyford and Megan Woods.

Trevor Mallard is the lowest ranked MP on the list at 32nd.

The highest ranking non-MP is Priyanca Radhakrishnan previously ranked 23rd and now 11th.

Mr Little told Morning Report he has delivered on his promise to Mr Jackson of giving him a winnable place on the party list.

Shortly after our interview with Mr Little The Labour Party released a statement announcing that Willie Jackson had been appointed to the role of Māori Campaign Director for the 2017 General Election.

“Willie was asked to take on the role due to his ability to connect with a demographic of Māori voters who live in urban areas, are typically younger and part of a new generation.”