Te Atatu and Manurewa

NZPA report:

Two Labour list MPs are among eight nominees to contest Chris Carter’s Te Atatu seat in next year’s general election.

Rajen Prasad and Phil Twyford have put their names up, along with small business owner Nick Bakulich, law student Jim Bradshaw, barrister Michael Kidd, university lecturer Hamish McCracken, community advocate Ann Pala and communications consultant Kate Sutton.

It could well be fourth time lucky for Phil Twyford. He is a member of the anti-Goff faction, so will have the support of the Te Atatu members who were supporters of Chris Carter.

Michael Kidd has no chance, having previously stood for the Destiny Church linked Family Party.

Rajen Prasad hasn’t exactly shone in Parliament, and I think he may b on the wrong side of 60, so would be surprised if he comes through.

I think Kate Sutton will be the one to watch, as the main alternative to Twyford.

Another list MP, Ashraf Choudhary, is one of seven nominees to contest the Manurewa seat for Labour, which will be vacated by George Hawkins who is retiring from Parliament.

The other Manurewa nominees are lawyer Ian Dunwoodie, union organiser Jerome Mika, lawyer Amelia Schaaf, human resources manager Shane Te Pou, company director Raj Thandi and policy advisor Louisa Wall.

I’d be amazed if Ashraf Choudary wins the nomination. It could only happen if Hawkins endorses him. Choudary is almost invisible at Parliament.

Jerome Mika is backed by EPMU and it is rumoured that Hawkins will force a by-election if he wins. Shane Te Pou has been written about extensively on Whale Oil. Louisa Wall as a pretty good MP during her short time in the House, and I was surprised she got such a low list ranking. But I understand she wasn’t great at getting on with others.

Ian Dunwoodie may be the candidate backed by Hawkins, as he used to work for him. He has also worked for the ATA, is a lawyer and even an EPMU member so could be the candidate acceptable to all factions.

Don’t know much about Amelia Schaaf – she is a barrister.

Raj Thandi is the General Secretary of the New Zealand Indian Central Association. He is an unsuccessful candidate for the Papakura Local Board.

So at this stage I’m picking it as Mika vs Dunwoodie.

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