'Thug MP' Harawira swore at me: student

00:08, May 05 2009

A Waikato University student has made a formal complaint against Maori Party MP Hone Harawira, alleging he was sworn at and belittled in a lecture on campus last week.

Political science student Steve Baron has asked the university not to invite Mr Harawira back after what he called appalling behaviour.

He said Mr Harawira used obscene language like the "f" word and statements like "my big black ass". "He's just a rude ... thug," Mr Baron said.

"This behaviour was totally inappropriate in such a place and is hardly a glowing example of what a role model for young people should be."

He said Mr Harawira refused to answer one of his questions immediately taking offence and talking over him.

But Mr Harawira told the Times he would not apologise.

"I shut him down because he's just a racist. When I did, Maori students ... started to clap.

"He just lumped Maori in with other minorities like homosexuals and Asians. I pointed out to him that we are not a minority, but tangata whenua. He tried it on and he got his comeuppance."

Political science lecturer Dr Patrick Barrett confirmed he had received a complaint from Mr Baron. Mr Harawira was invited so students could familiarise themselves with politics and policy.

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Waikato Times