Green Party says decision not to enter a candidate in a Mt Roskill by-election is to try and help prevent National winning

The Green Party says it won’t be standing a candidate in a Mt Roskill by-election, should incumbent Mt Roskill Labour Party MP Phil Goff win the Auckland mayoralty.

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election,” said Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei.

“This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working. The Mt Roskill by-election will be closely contested, and we don’t want to play any role in National winning the seat,” Turei said.

She said the Greens reached this decision after several weeks of internal discussions.

“The decision was made by the Green Party, and has no bearing on any other electorates or the 2017 election campaign,” Turei added.

Goff is favourite to win the Auckland mayoralty, with voting due to close on October 8.

Goff was the Mt Roskill MP from 1981 to 1990, winning the seat back in 1993 and holding it ever since. However, in the 2014 election National got 2000 more party votes than Labour in Mt Roskill. Goff has said if he wins the mayoralty he’ll stand down as an MP immediately.

Labour’s candidate in a by-election would be Michael Wood. National’s would be Parmjeet Parmar.