National | Māori Party

Petition launched opposing more MIQ facilities in Rotorua

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The Māori Party is launching the petition saying the community of Rotorua is feeling its manaakitanga is being abused.

The petition is the latest move against government plans to explore more options for MIQ facilities around the country, including Rotorua.

Māori Party co-leader and Waiariki MP Rawiri Waititi says Rotorua is now being unfairly targeted. "Te Arawa Iwi and Rotorua locals, as the receiving communities of MIQ facilities are the key stakeholders in this debate and they must be listened to.

"Te Arawa is renowned for their manaakitanga; it is the bedrock behind their tourism success. They have done their bit and now their manaakitanga is being abused."

The petition is calling for the government to listen to Te Arawa and Rotorua locals, and the Rotorua Lakes DHB who has said another MIQ facility in Rotorua will put more stress on the healthcare system.

The petition also raises concerns over the ability of the Rotorua economy to recover, which is reliant heavily on tourism, should another hotel be repurposed as a MIQ facility.

Rotorua councillor Merepeka Raukawa-Tait earlier this week said the government should “bugger off”.

“We have more than contributed, so I think just go somewhere else,” Raukawa-Tait told Te Ao Māori News.


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Rotorua currently has three hotels being used as MIQ facilities. Waititi says that is more than enough for the region and it's time for other rohe to step up.

"We understand that our country needs to be part of the solution for this COVID crisis and Rotorua has been that solution for long enough. They have had their turn and it is now time for another region to step up. Maybe the Government should turn its view towards Queenstown," he says.