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Harry James Duynhoven QSO (born 1955) is a New Zealand politician and member of the New Zealand Labour Party. He was the mayor of the city of New Plymouth and surrounding districts from 2010–2013. He was a Member of Parliament for the New Plymouth electorate from 1987–1990, from 1993–2003, and again from 2003–2008.

Harry Duynhoven

Harry Duynhoven.jpg
Mayor of New Plymouth
In office
Preceded byPeter Tennent
Succeeded byAndrew Judd
Councillor of the New Plymouth District
Assumed office
11 March 2015
Preceded byJohn McLeod and Len Howners
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for New Plymouth
In office
1987 – 1990
Preceded byTony Friedlander
Succeeded byJohn Armstrong
Majority5,439 (16.5%) [1]
In office
1993 – 2008
Preceded byJohn Armstrong
Succeeded byJonathan Young
Personal details
Born22 June 1955
New Plymouth, New Zealand
Nationality Netherlands
 New Zealand
Political partyLabour

Duynhoven was elected as Mayor of New Plymouth in October 2010. Since leaving office in October 2013, he is currently a district councillor representing the New Plymouth City ward and a board member on Taranaki's district health board.

Early lifeEdit

Duynhoven was born in New Plymouth on 22 June 1955. [2] He left Spotswood College at age sixteen to become an electrician, and eventually became technical teacher at the collegiate and polytechnic level.

Member of ParliamentEdit

New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate List Party
1987–1990 42nd New Plymouth Labour
1993–1996 44th New Plymouth Labour
1996–1999 45th New Plymouth none Labour
1999–2002 46th New Plymouth 29 Labour
2002–2005 47th New Plymouth none Labour
2005–2008 48th New Plymouth none Labour

Duynhoven entered Parliament in the 1987 election, winning the New Plymouth seat from incumbent National Party MP, Tony Friedlander. In the 1990 election, he lost the seat to National's John Armstrong, but won it back in the 1993 election. In the 2008 election he lost to New Zealand National Party candidate, Jonathan Young by 105 votes,[3] the smallest margin in the election.[4]

In 2003, Duynhoven raised with the Speaker of Parliament his status, and whether he might have breached electoral law, thus disqualifying him from retaining his seat. The Speaker was responsible for determining whether a vacancy existed. This matter arose after Duynhoven applied to resume his citizenship of the Netherlands. His father was from the Netherlands, and Duynhoven had possessed citizenship from birth, but had temporarily lost it due to a change of Netherlands law. According to electoral law, applying for foreign citizenship would disqualify Duynhoven from retaining his seat. The Speaker ruled on 23 July 2003 that Parliament's Privileges Committee, who were until 2002 responsible for determining whether a vacancy exists, would consider the matter, and that he would be guided by their report. The Solicitor General advised the Privileges Committee that the law was clear, and that Duynhoven's seat became vacant on 11 June 2003. The majority decision of the Privileges Committee was that Duynhoven was disqualified from holding his seat, and that it had accordingly been vacated. However the government introduced an act retroactively amending the law, to allow Duynhoven to resume his seat.

Duynhoven served as a Minister outside Cabinet of Helen Clark's Labour Government with the portfolio of Associate Minister of Transport, and later, Minister for Transport Safety and Associate Minister of Energy until his government's defeat. He did not stand as a party list candidate in the 2008 general election.

In 1990, Duynhoven was awarded the New Zealand 1990 Commemoration Medal.[5] He was appointed a Companion of the Queen's Service Order in the 2012 New Year Honours, for services as a Member of Parliament.[6]

Local government politicsEdit

In October 2010, Duynhoven was elected Mayor of New Plymouth.[7] Three years later, on 12 October 2013, Mr Duynhoven became the first New Plymouth mayor since Edward Hill in 1956 to be ousted after one term." [8]

On 11 January 2015, Duynhoven confirmed months of speculation that he would stand in the upcoming New Plymouth by-election to replace two councillors, John McLeod and Len Howers, who resigned in late-2014. Duynhoven said his decision to stand in the by-election comes after receiving "a huge number of phone calls and visits from people asking me to stand."[9]

On 11 March 2015, Duynhoven made his political come-back and won a seat in the New Plymouth City Ward by-election alongside Roy Weaver after being dumped by voters for another term as Mayor and now is a first time Councillor.

In October 2016, Duynhoven was re-elected to the New Plymouth District Council after being elected to the council in the 2015 by-election and he was elected to the Taranaki District Health Board after the 2016 local elections concluded.


  1. ^ at 2005 general election
  2. ^ Temple, Philip (1994). Temple’s Guide to the 44th New Zealand Parliament. Dunedin: McIndoe Publishers. p. 61. ISBN 0 86868 159 8.
  3. ^ Chief Electoral Office: Official Count Results: New Plymouth.
  4. ^ Chief Electoral Office: Official Count Results: Electorate Status.
  5. ^ Taylor, Alister; Coddington, Deborah (1994). Honoured by the Queen – New Zealand. Auckland: New Zealand Who's Who Aotearoa. p. 129. ISBN 0-908578-34-2.
  6. ^ "New Year honours list 2012". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. 31 December 2011. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  7. ^ Keith, Leighton (9 October 2010). "New Plymouth's new mayor". Taranaki Daily News. Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  8. ^ Rilkoff, Matt (12 October 2013). "Andrew Judd mayor of New Plymouth". Taranaki Daily News. Retrieved 11 January 2015.
  9. ^ "Harry Duynhoven returns in by-election". Taranaki Daily News. 11 January 2013. Retrieved 11 January 2015.

External linksEdit

New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by
Tony Friedlander
Member of Parliament for New Plymouth
Succeeded by
John Armstrong
Preceded by
John Armstrong
Succeeded by
Jonathan Young
Preceded by
John McLeod and Len Howners
Councillor of the New Plymouth District
2015 by-election
Succeeded by