8 Oct 2014

Recount to ensure fairness - Harawira

10:43 am on 8 October 2014

Mana Movement leader Hone Harawira says the recount in Tai Tokerau is not about winning the seat, but because he wants to make sure Maori voters get fair treatment.

Electoral Commission officials will today begin a recount of almost 23,000 votes in the electorate.

The party applied for the recount after Mr Harawira lost the Maori seat to Labour's Kelvin Davis by 739 votes.

Mr Harawira told Morning Report he was not trying to overturn the result, but that Maori people were being denied their vote.

"Opening polling booths without Maori roll voting papers, I'm talking about people not being offered assistance to vote, Maori people getting sent from Whangarei to Wellsford to vote, Maori people getting turned away because they didn't have their EasyVote card, Maori people having their identity questioned because of their different name, Maori people being treated like they just don't deserve to be in the polling booth."

Mr Harawira says he has raised the problem at previous elections and it is still happening, so he is considering a legal review through the Waitangi Tribunal.

Hone Harawira.

Hone Harawira on election night Photo: RNZ