Half way point for Māori Electoral Option

Media releases Māori Electoral Option 2018

Electoral Commission teams will be at Matariki events around the country over the next few weeks talking to people about the Māori Electoral Option, which runs for just two more months.

The 2018 Māori Electoral Option opened on 3 April and closes on 2 August and is when voters of Māori descent can choose to be on the Māori roll or the general roll. 

“We’ve reached the half way point in the Māori Electoral Option and it’s a good reminder to Māori voters to stop and check if they have thought about which roll they want to be on,” says Mandy Bohté, National Manager of Enrolment and Community Engagement for the Electoral Commission. 

Voters on the Māori roll will vote for a candidate in a Māori electorate and voters on the general roll will vote for a candidate in a general electorate.  Whichever roll they are on, they will choose from the same list of political parties when casting their party vote.

“If you’re happy with the roll you’re on, you don’t need to do anything, but if you want to change rolls, now is your time to choose,” says Ms Bohté.

“Look out for our enrolment teams at Matariki celebrations and other events in your community. They can answer your questions and talk you through the process,” says Ms Bohté.

Māori voters can enrol or change roll types by filling in an enrolment form which can be downloaded from www.maorioption.org.nz.  Enrolment forms are also available from PostShops or can be requested by phoning 0800 36 76 56.

More than 16,000 people have either changed roll types or enrolled for the first time since the start of the Māori Electoral Option.  There has been a net gain on the general roll of 3,352 and a net decrease of 1,426 on the Māori roll. 

After the Option has closed, Stats NZ will use the results of the Census and the Māori Electoral Option to calculate the number of general and Māori electorates for the next two general elections.  The number of Māori electorates could increase, decrease or stay the same.  The next Option is due to be held in 2024.