Raymond Tuhaka is the New Conservative candidate for Te Tai Tonga, one of New Zealand’s seven Maori electorates.
Raymond is 35, hails from the East Coast, and was born and bred in Gisborne. He attended Te Wharau Primary School and then Lytton High School, also known as Ritana Toa. Since then, he has lived all over New Zealand, and even in parts of Australia.
He is happily married to Crystal Tuhaka, his beautiful wife of nine years, and they have been blessed with three children, all currently under 10 years in age, with another baby girl due soon.
Raymond grew up with a strong presence of whanau/family, and loved being brought up with a lot of cousins and friends, which he believes cultivated a love for people in him today.
Raymond’s work background is in trades: operating heavy earthmoving machinery, truck driving, landscaping, concreting and curbing, reticulation, and swimming pool and water feature construction. He also worked for a welding and fabricating company for five years, during which time he gained his Forklift, Class 2, Class 4, and Crane licences. He has picked up a wide variety of practical skills and knowledge through work experience and finding out where he excels.
He has always been passionate about Kapa Haka, and has enjoyed doing it both for fun and for performance. He has also taken up ballroom dancing with his wife, allowing them to meet other people in their local community. Some years ago, his interest in creative contemporary dance allowed him to travel to the U.S, Canada and Hawaii, where he visited Native American Indian Reservations to offer a message of hope.
He has also always enjoyed rugby union, and is currently involved in coaching Ripper Rugby for his son’s team.
Raymond is a people person, and enjoys working in environments where he can give to others or help others any way he can. He has a heart for troubled youth, and has recently enjoyed working with youth at an alternative education school.
Raymond did not wade into politics until very recently. He had never been a political party member or involved in any political organisations. But being a husband and father has changed the way he thinks. He now has his family’s best interests at heart, which is what has compelled him to stand for New Conservative.
Te Tai Tonga voters are encouraged to give their party vote to New Conservative and their electorate vote to Raymond Tuhaka.