5 Sep 2023

Former Wellington mayor Andy Foster standing for New Zealand First in the Mana seat

2:51 pm on 5 September 2023
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Photo: RNZ / Samuel Rillstone

Winston Peters has announced former Wellington mayor Andy Foster will be a New Zealand First candidate at the election.

He will contest the Mana seat. Foster has previously stood for the party in 2017.

Foster was elected mayor of Wellington in October 2019 defeating the incumbent Justin Lester by just 62 votes.

It emerged after the election that film-maker Sir Peter Jackson had contributed $30,000 to his campaign.

Several issues including water infrastructure, the restoration of the Wellington City Library and transport reforms proved controversial during his term.

His leadership was questioned by councillors during debate over the library's fate, especially when he proposed selling off part of it.

Foster was defeated at the last local body elections by current mayor Tory Whanau.

He was a loud opponent of the Shelly Bay development and last week welcomed the announcement that the project had been scrapped. Sir Peter Jackson and Dame Fran Walsh have bought it and intend returning the land to its natural state.

The seat is currently held by Labour's Barbara Edmonds who is standing again.

Other candidates include: Frances Hughes for National, Lily Brown for ACT and Gina Dao-McLay who will represent the Greens.