National Party elects Sylvia Wood as new president | RNZ News

National Party elects Sylvia Wood as new president | RNZ News

The National Party has elected a new president at its annual conference in Christchurch.


Photo: RNZ / Craig McCulloch

Wood was announced as Goodfellow’s successor by leader Christopher Luxon at the conference on Sunday morning. National rules stipulate that delegates elect the board and the board elects the president.

Wood, an employment relations specialist, joined National in 2014 and the board last year.

She told members the party needed “an absolute obsessive focus on the party vote” in order to win next year’s election.

“We must be focused on [20]23 and absolutely determined to win – and I am very confident that we are,” Wood said.

“We must give New Zealanders every reason to party-vote National in 2023. That will take hard work, discipline and grit. And you know I like grit.”

Outgoing National president Peter Goodfellow.
Photo: VNP / Phil Smith

National will also unveil a plan today for a different approach to the welfare system.

This weekend’s annual conference is the party’s first with Christopher Luxon as leader.

In the keynote speech he is due to deliver today, he will focus on welfare and how to get more people into work.

RNZ understands National’s plan is aimed at people who have been on a jobseeker benefit for more than a year, and could include initiatives involving individual job coaches and non-government organisations.

Wood told the conference election victory was possible with a united and disciplined caucus, sufficient funds, and a great campaign leadership and ground game.

But she said nothing should be taken for granted.

“There is too much at stake. Our country is suffering. Our children are relying on us to return New Zealand to a thriving economy with great health, education and public safety.”

Woods was raised in the South Island but now lives in Auckland.

She owns and runs an HR consultancy and is also a member of the Employment Law Institute and the Institute of Directors.

This content was originally published here.

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