Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Accusations of Voter Apathy Misguided

15th October 2001

Accusations of Voter Apathy Misguided

Christiaan Briggs, a 25 year old who stood for Napier City Council, is not surprised by another low voter turnout for local body elections around the country.

“Accusations of voter apathy by some politicians is misguided frankly. How can eligible voters be expected to understand the importance of voting in local body elections when we don¹t even teach politics in our schools,” he said.

“I think there are a number of factors of fundamental importance causing low voter turnout, and number one is the fact that people just don¹t realise the extent to which local government affects their daily lives, especially people my age and younger.

“On top of this is the primitive voting system we use, which allows candidates to be elected without a clear mandate. This, coupled with low voter turnout, translates into candidates being elected by less than 25% of the eligible voters. A change to STV next term, which will allow voters to rank candidates, will be a positive move for all involved.

“I think another factor is that our current system does not allow people to vote for no one. This may sound strange but it makes it difficult to encourage people to vote if they don¹t think they¹ll like any of the candidates. People are far more likely to actually open the envelope in the first place if they know they don¹t *have* to vote for someone, and can still have their opinion recorded by sending in their ballot.

“And finally I think there¹s the lack of information coming through the media. I think candidates and journalists can split the blame for this. TV and newspapers should put far more resources into educating people about local government during the run up to an election. And all candidates should have comprehensive websites. When people realise what¹s involved I think they¹ll also realise how much influence they can have and just how exciting it is to live in such a free society.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tax Working Group’s Road Map

Trying to analyse the interim report on the Tax Working Group (TWG) is like trying to review an entire All Blacks game, but at the half- time mark.

With so much still to be finalised, Sir Michael Cullen and his colleagues are going to need all the All Blacks’ fabled finishing skills to get a coherent, fiscally neutral package together by the February 2019 deadline. More>>

 

Meth Testing Report: Housing NZ "To Right Wrong"

Phil Twyford “Housing NZ acknowledges that around 800 tenants suffered by either losing their tenancies, losing their possessions, being suspended from the public housing waiting list, negative effects on their credit ratings or, in the worst cases, being made homeless.” More>>

ALSO:

No Reshuffle: Meka Whaitiri Removed As A Minister

Meka Whaitiri will be removed as a Minister with immediate effect... The decision was made after receiving a report into an incident that occurred on 27 August in Gisborne, involving Meka Whaitiri and one of her staff. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity Bill: Making History For Women’s Pay

The Equal Pay Amendment Bill, introduced to the House today, will make it easier for workers to make a pay equity claim , using a more simple and accessible process within New Zealand’s existing bargaining framework. More>>

ALSO:

Suffrage 125: NZ A Trailblazer For Women

“We acknowledge the work of Kate Sheppard, Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia, and all of the suffragists who tirelessly campaigned for the vote… Today we also need to ask each other: how we can continue to make our country a fairer and better place to continue the legacy of the suffragists.” More>>

ALSO:

Asylum: Refugee Quota Increasing To 1500

“The quota increase will take place from July 2020. In the meantime, we will work to increase the number and spread of refugee resettlement and support services. We need to make sure we’re prepared for this change in policy.” More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels