Outgoing Prime Minister Bill English expressed his disappointment following Winston Peters' announcement this evening.
Selected by the Māori Party constituents, Howie Tamati MBE joins the race for the Te Tai Hauāuru seat against Labour’s incumbent MP Adrian Rurawhe and Greens candidate Jack Tautokai McDonald.
Tamati affiliates to Ngāti Mutunga, Te Ātiawa, Ngāi Tahu.
He is a former New Zealand Kiwi rugby league international player, captain, coach and administrator. He played 50 games for New Zealand including 24 tests, 19 of them consecutive. Tamati’s sports career has included roles as National Manager Māori Sport for the Hillary Commission and is currently the NZRL President, testament to his outstanding and longstanding contribution and leadership within the game.
In 2003, Tamati was selected as a member on the Māori advisory panel to the New Zealand Olympic Committee for the Athens Olympics (which established tikanga Māori within the New Zealand Olympic Team). As CEO of the Taranaki regional sports trust, Sport Taranaki, Tamati has been instrumental in helping shape the sporting and recreation landscape across the Taranaki region for more than 20 years. In 2015, he was recognised by Sport New Zealand with a lifetime achievement award in sport and recreation.
Tamati has an extensive background in local government, serving five terms (15 years) on the New Plymouth District Council (NPDC). He has championed a number of key Māori issues including Treaty Partner representation in local government, Māori street names and more recently arguing against the Waitara Endowment Lands Bill.
For seven years, Tamati led Te Ihi Tu, a New Plymouth community-based Trust that pioneered a kaupapa Māori prisoner rehabilitation programme that successfully integrated Māori long term recidivist offenders back into the community.
As a respected Māori leader in Taranaki region, his leadership and standing was recognised when he was nominated by Taranaki Iwi leaders to represent Taranaki as pallbearer at the tangihanga of the Māori Queen, Dame Te Atairangikaahu.
Tamati has been married to Aroaro Tamati for more than 30 years. He is proud father of seven children and five grandchildren. He lives by the core values of pono, tika, manaakitanga, whanaungatanga, kotahitanga and rangatiratanga.
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