Meka still the Boss, but Te Hamua increases his votes

The Electoral Commission has completed its official vote count for the Ikaroa-Rawhiti by-election.There were 12,149 votes cast in the election, which equates to 35.7 percent of the 34,008 people enrolled in the electorate.

Initial results from the June 29 by-election had Labour candidate Meka Whaitiri winning by 1761 votes, but that lead has been cut to 1659 after the counting of special votes.

Final poll results:

  • Meka Wahitiri (Labour) 4590
  • Te Hamua Nikora (Mana) 2931
  • Na Raihania (Maori Party) 2229
  • Marama Davidson (Green Party) 1251
  • Michael Appleby (Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party) 176
  • Maurice Wairau (Independent) 30
  • Adam Holland (Independent) 15
  • Candidate informals 46

Vote statistics:

  • 34,008 people enrolled
  • 12,149 total votes cast
  • 881 votes disallowed
  • 2470 advance votes
  • 1624 special votes including 16 overseas votes

(Source: Electoral Commission)


The Showdown at the “Ka mau ke te wehi” Corral

Last Saturday night the Ikaroa Rawhiti By Election was won by Meka Whaitiri (Labour Party).

Ikaroa Rawhiti is a big rohe.  It starts at at Hicks Bay and goes all the way down the East Coast to Wainuiomata in Wellington. It contains a number of different iwi.

This infographic focuses on the battle for Te Tai Rawhiti – or as the Cowboys might say…..the Showdown at the ‘Ka mau te wehi’ Corral! (Not the OK Corral! But the Ka mau ke te wehi Corral! Ye hah!)

So the region that Apirana (his birthday is today) and now Te Runanga o Ngati Porou calls te hau kaenga o Ngati Porou is from Potaka or Potikirua in the North, to Te Toka a Taiau or the Gisborne River Bridge.

There are 11 booths in this rohe. These are: Hicks Bay, Te Araroa,  Tikitiki, Ruatoria, Te Puia, Tokomaru Bay, Tolaga Bay, Whangara, Kaiti, Ilminster, Rutene rd.

What the data shows is that ‘Meke’ Meka (Labour) and ‘Tino Tere’ Te Hamua (Mana) took 4 booths each. Na Raihania (Maori) won 2 booths. Moreover, Marama (Greens) took Tikitiki and came within a two vote difference in Ruatoria to Na.

So who won? E ta….it was a draw!

Kia Ora Tatau!

Te Pakanga mo T T R


Data Analysis – FYI (NB. for simplicity sakes, I have not included the independent candidates)

Booth Meka Te Hamua Na Marama WINNER
Hicks Bay 26% 34% 8% 28% TeHamua
Te Araroa 25% 27% 18% 25% TeHamua
Tiki 21% 22% 25% 31% Marama
Rua 24% 19% 27% 26% Na
Toko 25% 9% 55% 9% Na
Te Puia 54% 11% 24% 4% Meka
Tolaga 57% 17% 11% 15% Meka
Whangara 27% 46% 4% 19% TeHamua
Kaiti 32% 43% 11% 12% TeHamua
Rutene 40% 29% 13% 19% Meka
Ilmister 36% 31% 13% 19% Meka
11 Booths: From Hicks Bay to Kaiti Bridge
Te Hamua 4 out of 11 Hicks Bay, Te Araroa, Whangara and Kaiti
Meka 4 out of 11 Te Puia, Tolaga, Rutene and Ilminster
Na 2 out of 11 Ruatoria and Tokomaru Bay
Ma 1 out of 11 Tikitiki

Tight Battle for 2nd & 3rd – Based on the Evidence

With the resignation of one of their party leaders, as well as the chair, there is a lot of buzz in the media about the demise of the Maori Party. This buzz is clearly premised on the provisional data from Saturday nights by election.

Lots of opinions are being shared. There is nothing wrong with opinions. But any opinion needs to be tempered by facts, and the facts show a very different story.  The race between the Maori Party and Mana was very close.

Moreover, given that in 2011 Labour got 61% of the Ikaroa Rawhiti vote, whereas in 2013, they only secured 42%, the evidence based conclusion is that Te Hamua took votes from Meka. Na’s vote between 2011 and 2013 stayed at around 20%.


But this analysis looks at the results of Te Hamua v Na only. It compares the % of votes they took from each booth.

So when reading this, you need to disregard:

(a) the early advanced voting that Te Hamua won;

b) Meka’s results; and,

(c)  the size of the votes of each booth – not all booths are the same size….

This analysis MriVManaProvResultsIR2013 shows:

  • At 52 booths, Na got a higher % of the votes than Te Hamua.
  • Te Hamua beat Na at 50 booths.
  • Na and Te Hamua  drew at 6 booths – they go the same % of votes.
  • At 9 booths, the difference between the share of each candidate was very slim. The candidate who ended up getting more only got 1% – 3% more votes than the other.


That was a close race. Te Hamua Nikora and his Mana team did really well.

But the Maori Party is not on the decline as this analysis shows. At the same time, it is not growing and that is most likely a concern to them.

To be fair, based on this analysis, it is more likely that in the Ikaroa Rawhiti district, Mana is only ahead by a nose.

Moreover, it is also plausible to say that the Maori party and Mana have quite evenly split the “tino rangatiratanga” segment of the Maori vote in Ikaroa Rawhiti.


One can state that the Labour vote is clearly ahead of both parties individually. But it did not grow its vote. That will concern them – even though they won.

Moreover, as discussed previously, if the “Tino Rangatiratanga” camp comes together, while difficult, it is a fair fight with the “Working Class” narrative.

If not however, based on the data, they have little show beating the incumbent.

This campaign has proven many pundits wrong. Furthermore, the analysis shows that if the pundits wish to be more accurate about their post game analysis they should look at more than the final score.

(Please note that this my personal interest. It is based on what I could extract from the Electoral Commissions data online. I am not being paid by anyone or party to do this.)