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PM’s words on Te Tiriti and co-governance 

summarised by The Centrist

During an interview with Moana Maniapoto, on Te Ao with Moana, PM Chris Hipkins shared his belief that our government has a responsibility to honour Te Tiriti.

He calls the co-governance debate “divisive and unnecessary” and says there is nothing to be scared of.

He attacks the opposition as using Māori as a ‘political punching bag’, but says he understands why “some non-Māori New Zealanders” are suspicious. 

“That fearfulness is: if Māori are getting something, does that mean that they’re missing out? My answer to that is no, it doesn’t mean that.”

To reduce that fear, Hipkins suggests co-governance should be explained better. 

He then seemingly contradicts himself by saying “I’ve stopped using the terms “co-governance” and “Three Waters”, because I actually think that they just became a kind of a lightning rod, and people who were most concerned about them, in many cases, didn’t understand what we were talking about when we were talking about those things.”

Hipkins suggests that those opposed to co-governance have an interest in creating division to further their own agendas.

Catch the full interview over at

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