Māori voter turnout still low

By Ripeka Timutimu

As the nation woke this morning, the local council election results were made available throughout the land.

There were no surprises to see that not many Māori came out on top, but some did make the cut.

It's been a long journey for Will Flavell to achieve his dreams to become a councillor, and now they have been fulfilled.

He says “in previous years there weren’t any Māori faces, or young faces. This is the first time to see a young Māori under 45 be voted on”.

Although the results came in just yesterday, Will is already thinking about the major issues affecting the communities in West Auckland.

There were many Māori throughout the country who were elected onto their respective councils this year. However one major concern revealed was the low voter turnout.

Willow-Jean Prime also won a seat on the Far North District Council, another newbie to the job. She saw a growth in voter numbers in her region, which could be because there was a Māori face in the race.

Only time will tell when benefits may be seen for Mäori, and bigger dreams may be realised for the recently elected  newbies.