Taxpayers won't foot the bill if the Maori Party sends a delegation to Fiji, Prime Minister John Key says.
Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia has shown some sympathy to Fiji's military government and said yesterday there had been "misunderstandings" about what it was trying to achieve.
She suggested a small Maori delegation visit Fiji and said her fellow co-leader, Pita Sharples, had mentioned it to Maori King Tuheitia Paki.
Mr Key said today it would not represent the Government and would not be paid for by taxpayers.
"We're not sending them on a trip," he said on TV One's Breakfast programme.
"If people want to get on a plane and go overseas they're free to do so as individuals...they can go as members of the Maori Party, but not as members of the Government."
Mrs Turia said yesterday Fiji's military leader and self-appointed prime minister Voreqe (Frank) Bainimarama was trying to remove racism from Fiji's voting system.
"We're a Pacific people ourselves, we are tied together by the waters of the Pacific, and we should be trying to work this issue out," she said.
"That's why we think somebody should go." - Otago Daily Times