The Race Relations Commissioner says Hone Harawira may not have broken the Human Rights Act by making racist comments. He went on to say on his Facebook page that,
Hone Harawira’s email to Buddy Mikaere was silly, offensive and not helpful to race relations, but like wearing nazi uniforms at a party or bowing to swastikas in a museum, unlikely to be a breach of the Human Rights Act. As with the Lincoln and Auckland Grammar students, the appropriate body – the university, the school or the political party – is responsible for upholding standards and taking appropriate action.
The Te Tai Tokerau MP is meeting with Maori Party officials to discuss an abusive email he sent defending a trip to Paris .
But Commissioner Joris De Bres says the act sets a very high standard in terms of freedom of expression and the prime responsibility in this case is for the Maori Party to uphold its values as a parliamentary party and as a Maori party.
De Bres says more than 20 complaints have been made with the Race Relations Commission about Harawira’s email, and each one will be individually looked at.