20 Jan 2014

Wellington kaumatua objects to female MPs on paepae

8:23 am on 20 January 2014

A kaumatua of Wellington iwi, Te Atiawa, Morrie Love, says he would object to any changes to Parliamentary protocol regarding women sitting on the paepae.

The Speaker of the House, David Carter, is reviewing Maori protocol used in Parliament.

It follows an incident during a powhiri last year where two senior female MPs were made to move from the front row of seats, reserved for speakers.

Chairman of the oldest local Maori authority, the Wellington Tenths Trust, Morrie Love, says there is no shift in society that warrants change at this stage.

He says by accepting the form of the powhiri, the area for that time is deemed a marae, and protocol needs to be genuine and authentic to marae tikanga.

Mr Love says any challenge to who sits on the paepae must come from women capable of speaking Maori on the marae.