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The Māori Health Authority will bring positive change for all NZ and it is wrong to attack it simply because it has a Māori focus, Te Whānau o Waipareira CEO and new Te Pāti Māori president John Tamihere says.
"You'll see the innovation and initiative there change the dial in mainstream for the good," Tamihere told TVNZ's Q+A programme on Sunday.
"National and ACT oppose a Māori Health Authority, notwithstanding all the evidence that's screaming out it should occur," he said.
"Everywhere that there is a positive Māori programme, National and Act leadership use us to be demonised as Māori people."
Tamihere says a fundamental shift in how non-Māori perceive Māori service delivery is needed.
“If Pākehā people are allowed to deliver services to Pākehā people, there’s this apprehension that if Māori are delivering to Māori there’s something wrong with that, and that’s just not right," Tamihere said.