Rino Tirikatene, Willow-Jean Prime elected as Labour Māori Caucus co-chairs

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Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene and Northland MP Willow-Jean Prime have been unanimously elected as the new co-chairs of the Labour Māori Caucus.

Labour Maori caucus - from left: Kiri Allan, Peeni Henare, Nanaia Mahuta, Kelvin Davis, Meka Whaitiri, Willie Jackson, Adrian Rurawhe, and Rino Tirikatene.

Labour’s Māori caucus – from left: Kiri Allan, Peeni Henare, Nanaia Mahuta, Kelvin Davis, Meka Whaitiri, Willie Jackson, Adrian Rurawhe, and Rino Tirikatene. Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

The MPs will replace outgoing co-chairs Willie Jackson and Meka Whaitiri.

Prime said the Labour Māori Caucus now had a record 15 members, each of whom were a committed representative of their people.

“The opportunity for Rino and I to lead this Caucus in further improving the health of our whānau, the environment, and creating opportunities in the Māori economy is humbling and exciting,” she said.

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Willow-Jean Prime Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

“We are getting on with the job, Labour has a clear mandate from Māori to deliver on the policies of our Māori and wider Labour manifestos in order to get our whānau through these challenging times.”

Tirikatene said Māori now made up 25 percent of Cabinet and a depth of talent within the caucus would ensure a progressive and strong Māori voice in every decision of the government.

“As co-chairs, we will ensure the Labour Māori Caucus continues to advocate hard for our people.

“Together, we will support Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to continue rolling out Labour’s plan that is moving in the right direction and investing in our people.”

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