Hastings Council Cans Maori Wards Vote Plan
A Hastings District Council Committee favours the status quo after discussion over Maori wards.
A heartfelt, emotional discussion preceded the Hastings District Council-Maori joint committee’s decision yesterday to recommend that the council not introduce Maori wards for the district at this time.
Councillors Henare O’Keefe and Bayden Barber were concerned that going through the process of a poll to decide on Maori wards could be unnecessarily divisive and damaging, and likely to be unsuccessful.
“I do not think Maori wards are in the interests of the people – we would be on a hiding to nothing going back to a referendum,” Mr O’Keefe said.
“Regardless of ethnicity you get to this table by doing the hard yards – you don’t need Maori wards for that.”