March An Overwhelming Success
The following is a statement from Marney Ainsworth, a spokesperson for Wake Up Auckland:
"Today, over 4000 people attended the Wake Up Auckland march, according to official police estimates. Those attending were from a very wide range of backgrounds and interests. The peaceful, good natured crowd moved along Queen Street to Myers Park, where a range of speakers were well received. This turnout is a stunning endorsement of the core message of Wake up Auckland that the new direction being taken by the Auckland City Council is rejected by a large proportion of Auckland residents. "If any one had said six months ago that we would be having a rally in Auckland for democracy I simply would not have credited it" said spokeswoman Marney Ainsworth. "John Banks and the ACRN councillors need to step back from their plans to ram through plans that will strip our city of its heart and soul. We want a city that is green, inclusive and democratic. The means must be consistent with the ends." The use of violence by John Banks to suppress this message will not succeed. Sadly, it will only serve to attract those people who find these methods acceptable. Wake Up Auckland stands on a platform that explicitly rejects the use of violence and abuse for any reason. We call on those people who are tempted to fight fire with fire to resist this urge and turn their energies to encouraging as many people as possible to participate in the democratic opportunities that are available to us, be they making submissions on the annual plan or attending more rallies. Cooperative inclusive processes are the only way that we can move forward together, to build a city that we all want to be part of - that we all can be proud to call home."