28 Jan 2020

Shane Jones under fire for calling Pania Newton a 'young putiputi'

From Morning Report, 7:24 am on 28 January 2020

New Zealand First MP Shane Jones is not backing down on his criticism of Ihumātao protest leader Pania Newton.

Jones called Newton a "young putiputi" - meaning a young flower - during his visit to Rātana last week.

A group of almost 100 Maori academics, activists, artists and political commentators have published an open statement calling him a bully, and some say he needs to apologise.

He told Susie Ferguson he stood by the comments, and compared those objecting to his language as namunamu, or geraniums, but also irritants.