23 July, 2017. Candidates from the One Pacific movement standing as Maori Party candidates have been named for this year's upcoming election at a launch in Auckland.
Up to nine candidates of Pacific descent are allowed, but six have been named so far.
Two are standing in Labour stronghold seats traditionally, former Samoan rugby player Tuilagi Saipele Esera for Manukau East, and Tofilau Esther Tofilau-Tevaga for Mangere.
Cook Island heritage candidates include youth advocate John Kiria who will run in Mt Roskill, Karen Williams for New Lynn and Maryanne Masters in Napier.
Tongan Manase Lua is standing for the Maungakiekie seat in Auckland that boasts a diverse electorate with 24 percent Asian, and a strong Pacific population as well as European and Maori.
"We are going to go hammer and tongs to do as best we can with this campaign and we are under no illusion that it's a huge challenge and its a battle because we are fighting in Labour strongholds as our people are strongly loyal to Labour and that is all good but we will still put our policies out and if it appeals to people, it appeals to people. "
Manase Lua said he was encouraging people, especially youth, to engage in this year's election and vote.