And then there were eight.
Veteran city councillor Andy Foster has added his name to what is becoming a very congested field in the race for Wellington’s mayoralty.
Foster, the council’s transport and urban development committee chairman, said he threw his hat in the ring because he felt the capital had lacked leadership for some years, and had been making too many “ad-hoc” decisions.
When he looked at the other seven people who have publicly declared they will run for mayor, he did not see a lot of those required leadership qualities, he said.
So Andy is saying the Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Wellington don’t have leadership qualities, nor does the Mayor of Porirua.
Foster said he had been contemplating a mayoral run for the past couple of months.
The Karori-based councillor will also contest a council seat in Onslow-Western, a ward where he has held a comfortable vote margin for some time.
Foster has stood for the mayoralty once before, in 2001, but has been largely content to act as a councillor during his 24 years of serving Wellington city.
Personal reasons played a part in his decision to challenge for the top job once again, he said. Foster’s son and daughter are now aged 13 and 11, and are old enough for him to be able to devote a bit more time to his political career.
Six of the eight mayoral candidates currently occupy a seat around the Wellington City Council table, meaning more than the third of existing councillors are now eyeing up a promotion.
When a third of the Council challenges the Mayor for the top job, it shows things aren’t good.
I’m just glad we have STV so we can rank our candidates – otherwise someone might win on 15% of the vote!