It's about culture, mate: Māori MP ejected from New Zealand parliament over necktie

WION Web Team
Wellington, New ealand Published: Feb 09, 2021, 05:31 PM(IST)

Rawiri Waititi, Co-leader & MP for Waiariki Photograph:( Twitter )

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In the debating chambers of the parliament, every member is bound to dress as per the dressing code which is business/formal attire, with a tie for men

New Zealand's Māori party co-leader was ejected by the Speaker in the parliament over a dispute about the dress code, or more precisely, a necktie.

Rawiri Waititi, the leader in news, decided to wear a different necktie than the one allowed and was thus ejected from the parliament's debating chamber. 

The Speaker had said that since Waititi was not wearing a proper dress code — considering his tie was missing — he would not be allowed to speak. However, as the leader went ahead delivering his speech, the Speaker had to eject Waititi.

In the debating chambers of the parliament, every member is bound to dress as per the dressing code which is business/formal attire, with a tie for men. However, Waititi chose to wear "Māori business attire" which he said was cultural dress.

In this, he chose to wear a pounamu (greenstone) necklace instead of a necktie. This action was not appreciated by the Speaker, who then ejected the leader from the parliament on an immediate basis.

Rawiri Waititi

"It's not about ties it's about cultural identity mate," Waititi told the Speaker before leading the chamber, as per the local media reports.

He further took to Twitter to talk about the issue. "Dissapointing the Speaker has set one precedent for some members of but not for everyone. Being told to leave the house because of my choice to wear hei-tiki as cultural business attire is absurd," he tweeted.

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"My hei-tiki is my tie of choice. It ties me to my tīpuna, whenua, and people. We have made it known that this party will not be subjugated nor assimilated to dated colonial rules."

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