Taxi driver test

04/08/2014

The taxi driver who picked me up at Wellington Airport last week asked why I was in the city.

When I said I was up for valedictory speeches at parliament discussion turned to politics and he said he’d always voted Labour until the last election when he’d voted National.

He planned to vote National again this time because he didn’t think Labour is on the right track and John Key and National are.

He  said Samoans like him had traditionally voted Labour and his decision to change wasn’t taken lightly but he wasn’t the only one who was thinking blue rather than red.

The taxi driver who took me back to the airport was also Samoan.

He said he always voted Labour but last time he’d voted New Zealand First. He wasn’t sure how he’d vote this time but he wasn’t happy with Labour.

The views of two taxi drivers doesn’t have statistical validity but these conversations confirm a trend of change in political allegiance among Pacific people.

The work of National MPs Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga and Alfred Ngaro has helped as has the enthusiastic campaigning by Mangare candidate Misa Fia Turner.

But there is also a recognition by more Pacific people that National values are more like theirs than those of other parties.

One of those is Jonah Lomu:

Some of the comments left in response to Lomu’s tweet contained an unfortunate level of vitriol.

But like it or not, National is working for all New Zealanders and no party can take the support of any people, individuals or groups, for granted.


National selects Misa Fia Turner in Mangere

09/05/2014

National Party members  has selected Misa Fia Turner as their candidate in Mangere:

“Fia has a strong record of working hard for the people of Mangere. This election our communities have a chance to gain a strong voice in the National Party and to support a National Government that is focussed on the things that matter,” said Electorate Chair Dan Purcell-Lokeni.

Ms Turner says Labour has taken the support of South Auckland communities for granted and it’s time for a new voice in Mangere.

“Labour no longer represents the values that are most important to our families and communities,” said Ms Turner.

“Mangere communities want more jobs, better education, and our crime rate to keep falling. We want to see our hard work rewarded and create better opportunities for our children and grandchildren. It is with National not Labour that we can achieve this.

“I will be seeking the support of our communities to give Mangere a fresh, strong voice in John Key’s National Party, and to return another National Government that will keep working hard for all New Zealanders after the election.”

Misa Fia Turner was born and raised in Samoa, and has lived in Mangere for nearly twenty years. She is a mother of four and grandmother of three.

She is the co-founder and Clinical Manager of ‘Malu I Uo Faatuatua Family Relationship Services, providing counselling, family therapy, clinical and cultural supervision, facilitation and mediation, training and mentoring. She is also Clinical Practice Manager for Genesis Youth Trust, a Police Youth Development Programme working with youth at risk and families with a focus on reducing youth crime and re-offending.

Amongst a wide range of community activities, Ms Turner is an active church leader and a member of the South Auckland Family Violence Prevention Network. She is a past member of the Whanau Ora Pacific Partners Group and Pacific Island Advisory Committee for the former Manukau City Council.

Surely even its detractors can no longer accuse National of being male, pale and stale.

Not, I hasten to add, that there is anything wrong with men of any complexion.

 


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