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Source: New Zealand First – Press Release/Statement:

Headline: Northland By-election Media Conference

Many months ago, we learned of alarming circumstances in the Northland electorate which would inevitably lead to a by-election.

This information was known to a number of others and at a much earlier date, even well before the 2014 September 20 election.

As it emerges there is to be a by-election in Northland on the 28th March.

Since this has become public knowledge we have received many requests from a wide number of people, right across the political spectrum, for us to stand in this by-election.

The economy and communities of Northland are well known to me. I was born there, worked on family farms there, was educated there, was chosen to represent  sports teams there, as well as having an interest and a home in the electorate all of my life.

Standing in a by-election is not an easy decision to make but I have had a long-held concern for Northland’s forgotten people and its overlooked economies. A study of all facets of the electorate suggests that it has been marginalised and cinderallarised, along with many other provinces in New Zealand. Regional development is stagnating there.

None of this is the fault of Northlanders, but in what has been aptly described by many economists as New Zealand’s  two-tier economy, Northland has been relegated at the bottom of the second tier.

This is not how Northland used to be, where it was once was one of the jewels in this country, in many more ways than one. Northland should be the Florida of New Zealand.

That is why, having consulted with my colleagues and party, as well as many in the Northland electorate, we have decided to respond to their call and to put it all on the line for Northland.

We will be asking Northlanders to put Northland first so that Wellington gets the message, loud and clear, and begins paying real attention to their serious needs.

We stand for our country’s flag, its values and for a united country, where all benefit in economic progress, and where the interests of our people are paramount and our first priority.

Northland needs a real voice that is able to hit the ground running and ensure that for the coming years no one will ignore what Northland thinks and wants.

Victory here won’t change the government but it will change the way they think.

We start as the underdog but this is a chance in a lifetime for the Northland people, and we have every confidence that they will answer the call.

Our campaign starts today.

Thank You

Winston Peters

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