Mana (not to be confused with Mana)

An astute reader emailed me about the pending registration of the Mana Party:
  • the name of the party is the same as the name of an electorate (ie the Mana electorate, obviously!);
  • as far as I know this is without precedent in NZ; and
  • it might fall foul of s65 of the Electoral Act 1993 accordingly:

65 Parties with certain names not to be registered

The Electoral Commission shall refuse an application for the registration of a political party if, in its opinion, the name of the party or any proposed abbreviation—

(a) is indecent or offensive; or

(b) is excessively long; or

(c) is likely to cause confusion or mislead electors; or

(d) contains any reference to a title or honour or similar form of identification.

Arguably confusion or the potential to mislead would arise if the Mana Party were to field a candidate in Mana.

Interestingly there is another Mana party, but in India. It has some similarities with the Mana Party here:

Mana Party (‘Our Party’) is a political party in Andhra Pradesh, India. It was founded in 2007 by 93 BC Castes’ Aiykya Vedika. MLC Kasani Gnaneswer is the president of the party. The party seeks to represent backward caste interests.

Speaking also about confusion, there could be some issues for the registration of the logo. Te Mana Kōrero is a government organisation that is part of the Ministry of Education, it has a logo that is not dis-similar to the Mana party logo. Sure it uses a different font but it has the same triangle devices in the letters and uses the same colour for the lettering.

Te Mana Korero logo

Mana Party logo

Mana Party logo

It will be interesting to see if the Electoral Commission says anything about this.


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  • Graeme Edgeler

    Could it also lead to confusion with Mana Māori Movement, Mana Motuhake, or Mana Wahine?

  • peterwn

    The alternative considered ‘The Real Maori Party’ would have been worse IMO, apart from being an untruth. I suspect a consideration that Matt McCarten would have had in mind is his possibility of hijacking the Mana Party as his own left wing vehicle once it had a foot in Parliament.

  • bunswalla

    If nobody else has, let me be the first to suggest that a far more appropriate name would be the Manus Party. This would remove any confusion about electorates or other parties, although to be fair a lot of people residing in the Homes for the Bewildered around NZ would just think Winston had relaunched under a new name.

    • titanuranus

      You are right bunswalla but M Pretorius may just complain, this from a while back;

      Default You manus!

      Hi All.

      Here’s something that made me laugh uncontrollably this morning. It is a decision from the Advertising Standards Authority.




      Chairman’s Ruling

      8 August 2006

      Complaint 06/288

      Complainant: M. Pretorius
      Advertisement: Land Transport New Zealand

      Complaint: After drinking beer with a group of families and friends, Jeff opens the door of his car as if to drive home, but in fact he has heeded his friends’ warnings not to drive home, and is just retrieving his football. The guys then interact with: “Nice one bro. … You’re a manus…. No, you’re a manus.” The tagline reads:


      The Complainant, whose name was “Manus” said the use of the word which indicated that Jeff was a fool, had caused him considerable embarrassment.

      The relevant provision was the Code of Ethics, Rules 5 and 11.

      The Chairman noted the Complainant’s view. The task before him was to determine whether the advertisement before him contained anything which, in the light of community standards, was likely to cause serious or widespread offence, hostility, contempt, abuse or ridicule.

      In making his ruling he referred to Decision 03/347 where, in not upholding a complaint about an advertisement that contained the line: “Helen Pearce is a slapper”, the Complaints Board had said:

      “…As a preliminary matter it noted that both Complainants had been offended by the advertisement, and that was unfortunate. It took note that the use of the name “Helen Pearce” had been a random choice with no intention of referring to a real person. In viewing the senario shown, the Complaints Board was of the view that it was quite clear that the name in the context used, referred to a fictitious person in the organisation depicted….”

      The Chairman said the same applied to the socially responsible road safety advertisement before him and there was no apparent breach of the Code.

      Chairman’s Ruling: Complaint No Grounds to Proceed

  • (Shhh! We’re hoping Hone doesn’t realise, applies late, gets declined and doesn’t have time before the deadline to re-apply!)

  • Change the “M” to a “N”…….problem solved.

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  • lulu

    Imagine how the racist would spew if his party name was rejected. The fact that he can’t have whatever he wants would be yet another constraint on his rights imposed by the mofos.
    But even if it wanted to does the Electoral Commission have the balls to decline him?
    Trivial stuff but tricky eh?

  • Mr Blobby

    He will file late but it will be allowed because if they don’t it will be the basis for more protests etc etc etc
    What about the Hikoi Party
    They could have a Government funded protest permanently marching up and down the country, in there cars.
    I saw a protest years ago, when it finished half the cars had there bonnets up with the occupants trying to start them.
    Why are we still wasting time on this oxygen thief?

  • topbloke

    IMO I think the Te Mana logo & Mana logo are different enough for IPONZ to register the MANA logo image as a Trademark, however there are plenty of revoked, failed & abandoned applications for the word Mana on their registers, this suggests to me that Iponz see the word as being in widespread common use and therefore unregisterable. However I’d imagine that “The Mana Party” could be registred as a wordmark.

  • thor42

    Change the name to “Da Maori Party”. Led by Hone da Maori.

  • titan

    To remove all confusion and ambiguity…. how about a name change from MANA PARTY to the MANIACS PARTY?

  • mediatart

    Dont you mean Maania party , titan. Lets have some real dingo te reo not like Johhny Hadfield aka Hone Harawira

  • thor42

    I like Mr Blobby’s suggestion – the Hikoi Party.
    Even if the whole of New Zealand were given to the Maori, and all Pakeha left the country, they still wouldn’t be satisfied.
    There would be no-one left to fund their benefits.

  • hard1

    The astute reader will recognise this as the MURU party , the party of collective punishment for all who make an honest living . The first qualification for membership would be never having been self employed , the second would be using ample oil products whilst protesting the exploration of such resources , and the third would be never showing contentment in public despite having a healthy tax-funded income .