Education Minister and National List MP Hekia Parata has today announced she will step down from politics at the next election.
She advised the Prime Minister of her decision earlier this year, but news of her not wanting to contest the 2017 election was only made public today.
"I have no plans beyond serving as Education Minister as long as the Prime Minister wishes me to," she said.
"There are still a number of deliverables in the education work plan in the meantime and my focus and energy will be unwavering."
Ms Parata was elected to Parliament in 2008 and has served as the Minister of Education since 2011.
She has previously held the portfolios of Minister of Pacific Island Affairs, Minister of Energy and Resources, Minister for Women, Minister of Ethnic Affairs, Minister for Community & Voluntary Sector, and Associate Minister of ACC.
She said it was an "honour to work each day in this portfolio".
"It's true that it involves a number of difficult decisions but I have been committed to making the right decision for our children and young people," she said.
"I am also keen to see a fresh candidate nominated in the marvellous seat of Mana and to provide voters with a strong contest at the next election."
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