The Maori Party have announced:
Upon reflection we have all agreed that with Tariana retiring at the 2014 election, it will not benefit the Maori Party to have both co-leaders retire at or before the next election. Therefore it has been decided that Pita will remain co-leader for the foreseeable, future and will remain a Minister while the Maori Party is in Government.
Tariana has agreed for her retirement to take effect immediately as a co-leader, and the National Council has resolved to elect Te Uroroa Flavell as her successor This means that we will have clear leadership going into the 2014 election with Pita Sharples and Te Uroroa Flavell as co-leaders. Tariana will remain a Minister up until the election, and it is our expectation that Te Ururoa will become a Minister after the election if the Maori Party is in Government again.
Rule 4(2)(c) of the Maori Party constitution requires there to be one male co-leader and one female co-leader. To implement the succession plan in accordance with our rules, Te Ururoa has agreed to undertake gender reassignment surgery and upon his release from hospital will be the female co-leader of the Maori Party. We thank him for his bold sacrifice in order to unify the Maori Party.