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'We just don't see the point' - Bill English shuts down proposal for prison based on tikanga Maori values

Prime Minister Bill English has quashed any hopes of a proposed prison based on tikanga Maori values, under a National Government.

"The rehabilitation efforts to reduce re-offending take into account what is going to work for [Maori]," Mr English said. 

"[Maori values are] incorporated in our prisons where it's appropriate, we just don't see the point of trying to designate a prison as a Maori prison."

"You don't want to create the impression there is some kind of separate system," he said. 

This is despite coalition partner the Maori Party not only supporting Labour MP Kelvin Davis' idea, but having already had it as a policy for the last seven-years.

Mr Davis did not want the prison to be exclusively for Maori offenders but says its time for New Zealand had a prison that better represented tikanga Maori. 

Mr English's comments come after Labour leader Andrew Little did not rule out the idea today to try and curb the over-representation of Maori in prison.

The PM said Maori values are already "incorporated in our prisons, where it’s appropriate". Source: 1 NEWS


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