Māori Party save Waikeria Prison while Kelvin Davis is left to defend Corrections???


Let’s be clear, it was the Māori Party in the end who talked this situation down and de-escalated it…

The 16 inmates who overran the prison last week finally surrendered about noon today, Māori Party co-leader Rawiri Waititi announced in a statement about 1pm.

Waititi arrived at the prison this morning after travelling through the night to meet the 16 inmates after they asked to speak with him, he said.

“They were ready to come down,” Waititi said. “Naturally, they were tired and hungry but still very determined to see change.

…Rawiri and John Tamihere were at the prison de-escalating the situation while Kelvin Davis went into hiding.

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Davis has swallowed the Corrections lies hook line and sinker and showed none of the leadership he has previously displayed when it comes to prisoner rights and inhumane prison conditions.

The lies being spun to gloss over Corrections atrocious handling of this are unacceptable and will quickly get uncovered.

It is clear Corrections had staffing troubles over Covid which led to unacceptable conditions…

Our drinking water in prison is brown. We have used our towels for three straight weeks now. Some of us have not had our bedding changed in five months. We have not received clean uniforms to wear for three months – we wear the samer dirty clothes day in and day out. We have to wash our clothes in our dirty shower water and dry them on the concrete floor. We have no toilet seats: we eat our kai out of paper bags right next to our open, shared toilets.

…trying to claim his is all Gang members with no righteous grievance eclipses Corrections own incompetence here.

Pointing to a prison that won’t be finished for another 2 years as a solution is a joke. Prisoners should have the basics, clean water, clean towels, clean bedding and clean clothes, to deny them those because of staffing issues due to Covid isn’t acceptable and leads to riots.

This prison has repeatedly failed inspections and our international obligations, to ignore that is childish.

It is disappointing in the extreme for Kelvin Davis to have said nothing for days and when he does speak, place all the blame on the prisoners for rioting.

This was a deeply damaging situation made worse by the lack of Kelvin’s leadership.

Māori Party 10 Labour 0


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  1. The NZ Herald reports Davis ignored everything because he didn’t want to give the prisoners any political attention. He says no complained earlier about anything. According to him, 21 prisoners went apeshit for no reason in one of NZ’s “top jails”. Corrections Chief Executive Jeremy Lightfoot said matters escalated quickly. If only they had recieved a warning. Around midday Tuesday, Corrections recieved a call saying a riot was about to break out. A few hours later, one did.
    Corrections Association (Union Reps for Corrections staff) knew about problems inside the prison and said the prison was well past it’s use by date, citing “horrible conditions”. All public knowledge. Doesn’t sound very “top” or “in control”.

    The Herald article is really poor. I recommend it for anyone wanting to see what several tough-on-crime monkeys look like, all spinning in a circle together. It’s possible that everyone is lying about everything, except Davis and DoC, but it seems unlikely.

  2. Rawiri Waititi seems to have done well, unlike the bundies National dispatched in one of their clown cars.

    As for Kelvin Davis, give me a break .. he’s so full of it .. it’s coming out his mouth! Rawiri Waititi has gained mana from this. Bet he’s willing to meet people were they’re at, speak form a place of common reality (not Ardern waffle), speak harsh truth to all people and outline a meaningful path forward.

    Today, compared to Kelvin Davis, Rawiri Waititi is practically Jesus. I don’t mean to be blasphemous, but yo’ll know what I mean lol !!

  3. It’s all become a bit pathetic really.
    Stuff headline: “Corrections Minister says Waikeria prisoners actions were ‘unacceptable'”
    What then of how it all came to pass? Increasingly some of our elected political ‘representatives’ (i.e. ‘representatives’ of an electorate) are becoming the excuse agents for the poor performance of its officials and the political class. And they wonder why globally people are losing faith.

    Something must be done! Well get off your fucking chuff and DO something!!! Even under the existing slightly fucked mechanisms, there are ways and means (in this space going forward rhubarb rhubarb)

    Apparently we’re going to need a year-long inquiry into the monopsony/duopsony of supermarket activity.
    How long do you think Corrections will take? Let’s not even take on other parts of the public service (local and central) where existing data shows it’s just a teensie weensie bit fucked.

  4. Davis is pathetic. And I can see more and more people moving to the Maori party because they do the mahi and they are principled.

    • Maybe, but they need to do the mahi after Marama Fox and 9 years in bed with National. Let them keep proving themselves.

  5. This is the party that we gave 100% control and there is no opposition to hold them too account .In this situation the Maori Party has shown them up from both to Maori and a humanity point of view . Jacinda’s smile will look very false when she fronts up about this

    • How many deaths would have occurred had the church praying Collins or the gun toting Seymour responded?
      Jacindas smile? I suggest you return back home to mother England, you and Boris deserve each other.

      • Sorry Bert but on this one you are on the back foot. I would say 80% of commentators plus MB are with me on this that Kelvin Davis was wrong to say nothing . If he had not interfered with Nationals plan when coming to power the new prison would be built by now .

  6. Big ups for Rawiri Waititi!!! Kelvin Davis merely embodies everything that this Labour Govt is about…and that is nothing.

  7. ““Corrections Minister says Waikeria prisoners actions were ‘unacceptable’”

    Davis is talking to his and Jacinda’s new constituency with statements like that.

    Once again he could have acknowledged the conditions being endured and why and that they will move to address it but no.

    There is a majority government but when it comes to action the Maori party is more effective.

  8. “Sixteen prisoners surrendered and were escorted out about midday Sunday by Rawiri Waititi, co-leader of the Māori Party.”

    Waititi said he had made several attempts to enter the prison on Saturday but was “blocked at every turn”.

    “The law allows the right for any MP to visit prisons and to communicate with prisoners in regard to their treatment in prison or a complaint about treatment.”

    Thank goodness that Rawiri Waititi persisted in his legal right to have access to the prison and was able to enter into negotiations with the prisoners that resulted in a peaceful end to their rooftop protest.

    Now imagine if the Maori Party had not gained any seats in Parliament, and Kelvin ‘No Show’ Davis was in sole charge.
    And Corrections had been left to their own devices to get the prisoners down.
    The outcome would most likely have been very different. The chance of a peaceful resolution would have been a lot less likely if Corrections only had themselves to bring the rooftop protesters down.

  9. Davis says he made a decision not to bow to the men’s demands nor make public comment that would have opened up political negotiation with them.
    He says it would have achieved nothing to bring the event to a safe resolution.


    “It would have achieved nothing to bring the event to a safe resolution”!?

    Thank goodness the Maori Party disagreed and achieved a safe resolution.

    That is not a ‘nothing’.

    Some buildings that should have been torn down anyway were torched, at least no families are grieving the loss of a loved one.

    That is not a ‘nothing’.

  10. I heard a great comment on radio this morning . Prisons are there to take away someone’s freedom not their dignity.
    All politicians need to realize that every child brought up in poverty is more likely to end up as a prison statistic.

  11. As an old pakeha who tries to understand the genuine grievances of all people’s I believe what the Maori co leader did is to be applauded. To often our leaders shy away from facing up to realities. Instead of looking for photo opportunities at safe locations they should visit the crap motels being used for emergency housing. Unfortunately the politicians today of all parties leave things to their officials instead of rolling up their sleeves and visiting the coal face. From where I sit at least the Maori party does that.


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