20 Oct 2020

Ousted National MP Jo Hayes takes on role with Wairarapa iwi

3:00 pm on 20 October 2020

Ousted National MP Jo Hayes already has a new job, working for her Wairarapa iwi Rangitāne.

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Jo Hayes says she is looking forward to her new role as general manager of Rangitāne Tū Mai Rā Trust. Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

Hayes failed to win the seat of Mana and missed out on getting back as a list MP because of her party's big election defeat.

She is now the new general manager of Rangitāne Tū Mai Rā Trust - a job she said she applied for a month ago, not expecting to win the seat.

"I wasn't confident I was going to win, I mean it's a red seat at the end of the day," she said.

"I said to my Mana electorate I want to do this, I committed in March to it, and I want to see it through because I said I've come too far for me just to bail now and they understood that.

"They said, what if you win? And I said, it's a red seat so highly unlikely but I said I can't walk away. It's about integrity and trust."

Hayes said she and Rangitāne had an agreement that if she were to win the seat, she would continue her role in parliament.

There are 21 outgoing MPs in the party who were farewelled today at National's post-election caucus meeting.

Hayes said many factors led to the party's election defeat.

"It was the red tide, they had a popular prime minister, there was a whole lot of Covid stuff going on, a number of factors were going on," she said.

"With Judith coming in, it was a little bit late, and she did the best that she could do... we just needed to pull it all together at the end of the day."

Hayes will be moving to Masterton to be close to her mother, and is excited about her new role.

"I'm looking forward to new adventures," she said.

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