Te Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira may have to return to Parliament as an independent if he wins the by-election in his electorate, because his new Mana Party has only just applied to be registered.
He announced his resignation on Wednesday, to be effective from May 20, and is walking a fine line to get his party registered in time to qualify for extra parliamentary funding and to be recognised as a party leader in the House. Registration takes six to eight weeks and Mana lodged its application at 5pm yesterday. The by-election is set for June 25.
The more important date is actually Tues 31 May, when nominations close.
However things could get murky. If the Mana Party is not registered by 31 May, he can not be a candidate for it. But he arguably could still list Mana Party on the ballot paper as an unregisterd party or affiliations, just like a candidate can label themselves “Communist League” even though that is not a registered party.
Now if Harawira is allowed to list Mana Party on the ballot paper as an unregistered affiliation, then I doubt that will qualify as being elected as an MP for that party – even if the Mana Party does get registered between 31 May and 25 June.Tags: by-elections, Hone Harawira, Mana Party, Te Tai Tokerau