Representatives chosen to determine electoral boundaries

  • Judith Collins
Justice

Justice Minister Judith Collins today announced the appointment of the four political nominees on the Representation Commission.

The Commission is responsible for determining the number of electoral districts in New Zealand and fixing the boundaries for those electorates.

“The Government’s representatives will be Hon Roger Sowry and, for the Māori electoral boundaries, Daniel Te Kanawa,” Ms Collins says.

“Representing the Opposition parties will be Hon Pete Hodgson and, for the Māori electoral boundaries, Whetu Wereta.”

When setting the general electoral district boundaries, the Commission consists of the Chairperson, four ex officio members (the Surveyor-General, the Government Statistician, the Chief Electoral Officer and the Chairperson of the Local Government Commission) and two political representatives, appointed by the Governor-General on the nomination of Parliament – one to represent the Government and one to represent the Opposition.

When setting the Māori electoral district boundaries, the Commission’s membership consists of all the members described above, plus the Chief Executive of Te Puni Kokiri, and two political representatives, who must be Māori, appointed by the Governor-General on the nomination of Parliament, one to represent the Government and one the Opposition.

Biographical information

Hon Roger Sowry

Mr Sowry was a Member of Parliament from 1990 to 2005.  He was chief whip from 1994 to 1996 and chaired the Health Select Committee from 1993 to 1996.  Following the 1996 election, he was appointed to Cabinet as Minister of Social Welfare, a position he held for three years.  He also served as Associate Minister of Health from 1996 to 1998 and Leader of the House from 1998 to 1999.  He retired from Parliament in 2005 and took up the position of Chief Executive of Arthritis New Zealand. In 2008 he joined the government relations consultancy firm Saunders Unsworth.

Hon Pete Hodgson

Mr Hodgson retired from Parliament in 2011 after 21 years as the Member of Parliament for Dunedin North.  At various times within that period he held the ministerial portfolios of Economic Development, Tertiary Education, Research Science and Technology, Health, Transport, Commerce, Land Information, Statistics, Energy and Fisheries and Forestry.  He is currently an Associate at Tuia Consulting and is the Chairperson of the Australian and New Zealand Council for the Care of Animals in Research and Teaching.

Daniel Te Kanawa

Mr Te Kanawa is the Chief Executive of the Tuhono Māori Affiliation Service and has been a Trustee of the Ngāti Maniapoto Marae Pact Trust representing the Oparure Marae since 1981.  He is also a current trustee of the Maniapoto Māori Trust Board and The Puniu Land Trust.   Mr Te Kanawa holds a New Zealand Certificate in Draughting (Civil Engineering).  His tribal affiliations are Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāti Kinohaku, Ngāti Rora, Ngāti Uekaha, and Ngāti Pare Te Kawa, Ngāti Apakura.

Whetu Wereta

Mrs Wereta is a political scientist and statistician. She was a member of the New Zealand Royal Commission on the Electoral System that recommended New Zealand adopts mixed member proportional representation (MMP) for elections. In 1994, she was appointed to the four-person Māori Committee to the New Zealand Law Commission – set up to review, reform and develop the law of New Zealand. Mrs Wereta has served four previous terms on the Representation Commission.  She belongs to the Ngāi Te Rangi and Ngāti Ranginui iwi.