Labour leader Andrew Little has outlined his position on Winston Peter's plan to hold a binding referendum on Maori seats, saying he will not agree with the proposal if the parties are to go into coalition after the September general election.
Winston Peters announced his plan last Sunday to "move on" from Maori seats in parliament, referring to it as "tokenism".
However the idea did not have the support of the Labour Party.
"This election is not going to be fought and won on Maori seats, or peripheral issues," Mr Little said on TVNZ1's Breakfast this morning.
"It is going to be fought and won on things that really matter to New Zealanders, like getting decent housing, like getting more police into the police force."
He said he "won't agree" to a referendum on the issue, or to remove the seats.
"We've had Maori seats in our parliament for a long, long time, it's provided good representation of Maori in our parliament and I foresee that continuing."