Alfred Ngaro

Green killjoys bitter over Parliamentary rugby team

What a bunch of killjoys the Greens are opposing the traditional Parliamentary rugby tour.

The Greens are objecting to a corporate-sponsored trip for MPs to play in the Parliamentary Rugby World Cup.

Corrections minister Sam Lotu-Iiga, his colleague Commerce minister Paul Goldsmith and NZ First leader Winston Peters are among those who will skip parliamentary sessions in lieu of the September junket.

They’ll also be at the Rugby World Cup, which runs alongside the tournament.

Also on the team are Labour’s Damien O’Connor, Stuart Nash, Peeni Henare and Kelvin Davis, and National’s Alfred Ngaro and Mark Mitchell.

“If there are corporate lobbyists going, they have privileged access to ministers,” Greens co-leader Metiria Turei says.

It is not dissimilar to the Cabinet Club approach where there are select few who get to spend extended time with ministers and MPs.

“This isn’t the first time this has been raised.”

She added: “This is a trip to the Rugby World Cup, there is no point try to pretend that’s not what it is. And the fact that it has now been sanctioned as a parliamentary trip raises real concerns.”

In 2007, then-Prime Minister Helen Clark called for an inquiry into the Parliamentary rugby team after a trip to France.    Read more »

Vance kicks a speculator, boots it dead on the full

Andrea Vance likes to think she is a player in the press gallery…the mover and shaker with her finger on the pulse.

Today in the DomPost she writes what could best described as a speculator article based on every bit of rumour and gossip floating around Wellington, not much of which is true.

According to a story doing the rounds, National pollster and blogger David Farrar was recently invited to spend some time with Murray McCully.

Widely expected to step down by the end of this term, the foreign minister mischievously let slip he had no intention of retiring from politics – just to see how long the news took to reach his senior colleagues.

Farrar insists the rumour is not true. But it gives a few clues as to what is occupying the minds of National MPs.

One of the parties says it is b.s. but hey let’s run the speculator anyway. That story is old by the way and was running before Christmas.

McCully is not the most imminent departure from party ranks. Wellington’s worst-kept secret is that Trade Minister Tim Groser is shortly off to relieve Mike Moore as New Zealand’s ambassador in Washington.

Also likely to be waving goodbye to Parliament in 2017 is Assistant Speaker Lindsay Tisch, whether he likes it or not. No-one would be surprised to see Finance Minister Bill English take his leave, once he has delivered the long-promised surplus.

Read more »

Why are you sorry? He was a “judgmental little c*ck”

I didn’t realise Linda Cooper had it in her.

I thought she was dead set useless.

But she has come good big time, even if she did apologise afterwards.

Auckland councillor and National Party member Linda Cooper has apologised after she called a man a “judgmental little c**k” on the Pride parade Facebook page.

Ms Cooper had an exchange with Daniel O’Connor who said he thought National MPs Melissa Lee and Alfred Ngaro were against marriage equality.

“Well good on them to be brave enough to come out in support against their constituent Korean and Pacific views,” Ms Cooper said.

When Mr O’Connor said it looked like the two National MPs were trying to piggyback on the achievements they were trying to hold back, Mrs Cooper hit back.

“Get a grip little boy,” she said.

“When you grow up you will realise that life is not black and white.   Read more »

What on earth is going on in John Key’s mind?

It looks like John Key has had a rush of shit to the brains recently.

Something is seriously wonky with his thinking at the moment.

I’m talking about the messaging over the Sabin affair.

First up National has known about this issue for months, but sat there on the info, which proved remarkably accurate, for months letting the sore fester and become pustulant, almost turning gangrenous.

That was bad enough, and sorry I just don;t believe that the first he knew about the issue was just last week. Does he not speak to his chief of staff? Is his chief of staff keeping things from Key?

Then he stood by him on Monday as head of the select committee, again why? Didn’t Wayne Eagleson take Key aside and say “Boss, I think we have a problem”

By that stage Mike Sabin must have known what was happening Monday morning, surely someone in National’s caucus did too and no one thought to tell the boss…everyone tells the boss in National.

Then come Friday and over the weekend John Key pulls his best Sgt Schultz impression and declares he knew nothing.

Finally we get this brain fart.

Prime Minister John Key has hinted at some frustration with former MP Mike Sabin for failing to tell National about the personal issues that led to his resignation prior to the election, saying Mr Sabin had almost been appointed as a minister and news of his issue had come as “a shock.”

[…]

Mr Key said the first he knew of any problems Mr Sabin faced was in early December when his chief of staff told him. It is understood Mr Sabin’s issue arose prior to the election. Mr Key revealed Mr Sabin was on the cusp of being appointed as a minister when National was re-elected.

“To be frank, he was on the list of ‘likely to be a minister.’ It was a real toss-up between him and a couple of other people who got in. That’s how confident we were, or how lacking in knowledge of other issues we were.

So it came as quite a shock to me when I was told of the matters he was pursuing.”

Read more »

The battle for the Pasifika vote

Bottom line is, nobody cares about the Pasifika vote, until it is time to vote.  And they know it.

Despite big Labour majorities in the top three Pasifika electorates, voting age participation in Mangere, Manukau East and Manurewa was down and among the lowest for all general electorates.

Labour MP for Kelston Carmel Sepuloni said it had been a problem for the past three elections and needed to be “seriously addressed” for 2017.

She said young, educated Pasifika who were born in New Zealand were the key to reversing that falling turnout and to the future of the Pasifika vote.

National Party list MP Alfred Ngaro said the challenge for all parties was to recognise Pasifika voters were no longer migrants.

Most are now “Kiwis of Pacific descent” who are younger, more educated and looking to do things differently from their parents.

“There is no more traditional vote. The vote has shifted and changed and if we’re not cognisant of that, then I think we’re gonna miss the mark,” said Mr Ngaro.

Alfred Ngaro believes younger, Pasifika New Zealanders will be attracted to National’s message that individuals can aspire to more for themselves and that cultural obligations to church and family need to change.

But Carmel Sepuloni said collective cultural values were not being abandoned in the push for higher education and better jobs.

“We’re encouraged to do that for wider family and community. But if the principle of collectivism dilutes the longer we are here, will there still be that alignment to the Labour Party? I’m not sure.”

What the hell did she say?  Collective cultural values and principles of collectivism dilutes?  I swear, I don’t understand Pasifika talk.   Read more »

Another campaign truck that would make Fossy’s gay ute cry like a baby

Mark Mitchell has a Holden ute…it isn’t as manly as Alfred Ngaro’s truck, but certainly better than Fossy’s gay ute.

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Shame about the parking though Mitch…sort that out would ya…if you can stare down Joseph Kony, Victor Bout and Muqtada al-Sadr I’m sure you can park straight.

Now this is positive campaigning! (Tweet of the Day)

totd

Proof you can still get a good sledge in without resorting to the negative.

A seriously non-gay MPs Truck

Alfred Ngaro has got himself an awesome campaign truck.

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This one would make Fossy’s gay ute cry like a little girl.  Read more »

Pasifika community tiring of Labour’s nonsense too

The Pasifika community is breaking ranks with Labour after years of paternalistic attitudes and the “we know best” attitude of the Labour party.

People are now prepared to stand up and state that they can see a better, more aspirational way forward.

Michael Field takes a break from interviewing his keyboard on matters about Fiji to detail the ‘outrage’ over some Pasifika leaders daring to think for themselves instead of what Labour tells them what to think.

A small group of influential Pacific Island clergy have sparked fierce debate in South Auckland after they declared they would switch their support from the traditional Labour Party to the National Party.

The action, taken at the Manurewa flea market on Sunday, is under fire on Pacific Island social media.

The ministers involved have been criticised for not consulting their parishes.

The move has also sparked another meeting next Sunday when, under the auspices of a Samoan Catholic Church, 23 churches will meet to discuss political parties and Christian values.

The South Auckland electorates are traditionally Labour thanks in large part to church-going Pacific Islanders.   Read more »

Afraid of Pasifika people?

An email from a reader:

Re your tip off about Linda Nikora…’Dr Nikora is proposing that the limited places are restricted to Maori only as she does not believe any Pakeha are culturally competent to deal with Maori health issues. She then advised the students that she will be presenting on this issue to an upcoming conference in a bid to ensure Maori only treat Maori”…what don’t you understand about that? I as a Tongan brought up in Tonga understand the cultural paradigm of my fellow Tongans. Do I think a Palagi can understand the pyshology of Tongans simply because they’ve done degree in psychology? In short no…over the years I have witnessed Pakeha psychologists in trying to deal with Maori and Pacifica clients…many of whom admit having struggled to build a tangible rapport that led to positive psychological outcomes with their clients.

A particularly well regarded television psychologist is perhaps one of the most limited psychologists I have seen in dealing with Maori and Pacifica clients. There are many psychological nuances that gives one a decided advantage in building a rapport with people of the same ethnicity. In my particular case 51 years of being a Tongan has come in very handy and comparatively I feel well equipped and versed in dealing with Tongans than say someone that has not being a Tongan for the last 41 years. I readily accept a Maori psychologist is far better versed both culturally and in understanding the psychological paradigm of Maori clients and have bore first-hand witness to the rapport Maori psychs can engender with their own…which isn’t an abberation in any regard but more a cultural fit and understanding from both parties.

Mister Slater I saw you in a Manukau food court recently and it was evident to me immediately you were intimidated by Maori and Pacifica people and you were socially awkward and with respect not a man of courage and you would prefer dealing with people of your own ethnicity and social background. Not unusual in any regard and in point of fact a preference for most.

Strange…obviously I was cowering in the corner as I ate my lunch. What an amazing impression from a short lunch time observation.

Clearly you don’t know anything about me. I was born in Fiji. I have assisted on aid projects in Vanuatu and Samoa. I attend a gym owned by Buck Stowers, a Samoan, who I count as a dear friend, and at the gym I am often the only European customer. I assist from time to time at a decile two school in Mangere with the Young Enterprise scheme. This is a school that has just 4 Europeans on its current roll. Amongst those people I call friends are Fa’avae Gagamoe, Sam Lotu Iiga, Alfred Ngaro and Buck Stowers plus many countless people I interact with on a day to day basis in and around Manukau.

The last thing of course is there isn’t a single person or even a race of people that I fear or am intimidated by. I take people as I find them and do not judge on the appearances of just one lunchtime.