21 Sep 2013

Labour picks community worker for Chch East

9:32 pm on 21 September 2013

The Labour Party has chosen a community worker to contest the Christchurch East seat in the upcoming by-election.

Poto Williams, 51, who is a mother of three, is the regional manager of the St John of God Hauroa Trust, running the community, youth and child service in New Brighton.

Poto Williams.

Poto Williams. Photo: RNZ

Ms Williams believes she won the role because she has connected with the community in the eastern suburbs.

She says the biggest challenge ahead is to mobilise voters.

The by-election was caused by sitting MP Lianne Dalziel's decision to contest the Christchurch mayoralty.

Ms Williams beat James Caygill, Karen Hayes, Christina Laalaai-Tausa, Tina Lomax and Deon Swiggs in the race to be Labour's candidate.

Labour leader David Cunliffe made the announcement.


Labour party leader Mr Cunliffe says Ms Williams has expertise in the community and voluntary sector that will help the party's outreach.

Mr Cunliffe says Labour is not taking Christchurch East seat for granted and will work for every vote.


National has selected Matthew Doocey as its candidate and the Green Party is making its selection next weekend.

The by-election is scheduled for the end of November.