Wellington: New Zealand’s next Parliament is set to be the most inclusive ever, with several people of colour, members from the rainbow communities and a high number of women.
The ruling Labour Party was handed a resounding mandate in the election over the weekend, as voters rewarded Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern for her decisive response to COVID-19.
Labour won 64 of the 120 parliamentary seats, and more than half of those are female candidates. It also has 16 indigenous Maori MPs, the first leader of African origin, Ibrahim Omar, and Vanushi Walters of Sri Lankan origin.
“This is the most diverse parliament we have ever had in terms of gender, and minority ethnic and indigenous representation,” said Professor Paul Spoonley from the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Massey University.