6 Feb 2011

Harawira urges replacement of leaders who lose their passion

9:02 am on 6 February 2011

Te Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira has urged Maori to recapture the passion and energy of the foreshore and seabed march and dump leaders who lose it.

Mr Harawira spoke on Saturday night at a forum on the State of the Maori Nation at Waitangi, with lawyers Annette Sykes and Moana Jackson, Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei and Labour MP Parekura Horomia.

Mr Harawira said it had taken courage for 40,000 Maori to march on Parliament in 2004 and said Maori must not lose that passion.

If their leaders start to slip from their party's kaupapa, he said, they should be replaced by people with more courage and vigour and the will to use it.

He defended a recent newspaper article he wrote urging the party to review its direction and its coalition with the National Party.

Mr Harawira said the Maori Party should consider an alliance with the Greens, so that neither of the major parties could govern without them. he said the Greens' policies are very similar to the Maori Party's.

He said the Maori Party should be open to discussions in an election year with Labour and the the Green Party.

Mr Harawira said the Maori Party should not be foolish enough to lock itself to one party.