25th April, 2017
Nearly half of those hoping to run for common roll seats in Niue’s election next month are women.
The provisional roll released on Friday includes what’s believed to be a record 24 candidates contesting the six nationally elected seats, ten of them women.
The other 14 seats are elected by majority vote in single-member constituencies representing the 14 villages of Niue.
MP for Mutalau Bill Vakaafi Motufoou was among those pushing women voters to part with tradition and vote for their own sex.
“Somehow men get blamed for not having enough women in politics. But I look at it this way, there are more women on Niue than men. So why aren’t they voting themselves in and stop blaming us men?”
Va’aiga Tukuitonga who has been in parliament for 17 years said she hoped to see new faces in the fono this year.
“I hope that there will be new members in the house, new blood in the house. We have very intelligent people here in Niue. So I’m encouraging all the young ones – this is the time to come forward, be counted.”
Niue goes to the polls on 6 May.
Source: Radio New Zealand, 24th April 2017.