Wednesday, January 26, 2011


For the past 12 years, Keith Locke has been a constant and principled voice for peace and human rights in our Parliament. Now, he's planning to retire. Like Nandor and Sue before him, he's given more to us than we have any right to expect. But his departure will still be a tremendous loss, both to the Greens and to our politics as a whole.

It also means the torch will have well and truly passed to a new generation in the Greens. Locke and Sue Kedgley are currently the only two Green MPs remaining from their 1999 intake - and Kedgley is also retiring. The turnover has been so complete that Metiria Turei will be their only MP dating from before 2008. While parties need to renew, this has been an enormous and quite sudden loss of Parliamentary experience and likely institutional memory; hopefully they'll avoid similar bloc-retirements in the future.