Good show in Maun­gakiekie

This is the last in our se­ries looking at is­sues fac­ing vot­ers on elec­tion day this Satur­day. Heather McCracken hits the streets and talks to vot­ers in the Maun­gakiekie elec­torate.

Central Leader - - News - By Heather McCracken

PLANS to re­store the One­hunga fore­shore and build a new rail­way sta­tion are among is­sues on vot­ers’ minds in the Maun­gakiekie elec­torate.

Vot­ers say a com­mu­nity-led plan to cre­ate a water­front re­serve and sandy beaches will be a key lo­cal is­sue on Novem­ber 8.

“The fore­shore’s a big one,” says Joan Metge.

“Also open­ing the rail­way line and get­ting a lo­cal sta­tion.”

Sarah McEwen says One­hunga needs a new rail­way sta­tion and bet­ter pub­lic trans­port.

“It takes two hours to get to Manukau on the bus,” she says.

The econ­omy, health and ed­u­ca­tion were also con­cerns for vot­ers.

The Maun­gakiekie elec­torate en­com­passes south­east­ern Auck­land city, from Green­lane to the Manukau Har­bour.

Bound­ary changes since the last elec­tion have seen the elec­torate also gain parts of One­hunga, Royal Oak and Pan­mure.

It’s been a Labour strong­hold since 1999, when MP Mark Gosche took the seat from Na­tional’s Belinda Ver­non.

Mr Gosche held a 6000 vote ma­jor­ity in 2005, while Labour also took more than half the party vote.

The four-term MP is stand­ing down from Par­lia­ment this year to spend more time with fam­ily.

Union sec­re­tary Carol Beau­mont is con­test­ing the seat for Labour, while Auck­land city coun­cil­lor Pe­seta Sam Lotu-Iiga is stand­ing for Na­tional.

Both candidates have a chance of tak­ing a list seat in Par­lia­ment if they fail to win the elec­torate.

Most vot­ers who spoke to the Cen­tral Leader were un­de­cided about who to give their vote to.

Those who had made up their minds were evenly split be­tween Labour and Na­tional. But many were pick­ing Mr Lotu-Iiga to make a strong show­ing in his first par­lia­men­tary race.

“Sam Lotu-Iiga is pretty well known and I think he’ll do well,” says Jim Cas­tle.

“I don’t know if I’ll vote for him but he’s been work­ing pretty hard for it,” he says.

Hamish Pa­tel says he doesn’t know how he’ll vote, but thinks there’s a mood for a change.

“If you let one bunch of peo­ple run it for too long, they’ll twist the knob one way too far.”

Maun­gakiekie has among the high­est pro­por­tions of Pa­cific peo­ple in the coun­try, and a high num­ber of vot­ers who were born over­seas. House­holds gen­er­ally have a lower in­come than the New Zealand av­er­age, and are less likely to own their own homes.

Jim An­der­ton’s Pro­gres­sive: Matt Rob­son, list rank­ing 2.

NZ First: Ase­n­ati Lole-Tay­lor, list rank­ing 7.

ACT: Athol rank­ing 45.

McQuilkan,

list

Kiwi Party: Bernie Ogilvy, list rank­ing 6.

NZ Pa­cific Party: Dar­ren Jones, list rank­ing 5.

Com­mu­nist League: Pa­trick Brown. No party list.

Labour: Carol Beau­mont, list rank­ing 28.

Res­i­dents Action Move­ment: El­liott Blade, list rank­ing 4.

Green Party: Rawiri Paratene, list rank­ing 46.

Na­tional: Pe­seta Sam Lotu-Iiga, list rank­ing 35.

United Fu­ture: Denise Krum, list rank­ing 3.

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