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Council Breaches Human Rights

Thursday, 30 March 2006

Council Breaches Human Rights

Clevedon-Botany Councillor Dick Quax predicts that the decision taken by Manukau City Council to block 13,500 Maori who are on the General Roll from taking any part in the election for Taura Here (urban Maori) for the Council's Treaty of Waitangi Committee will end up before the Human Rights Commissioner.

According to Cr Quax this represents 40% of all Maori voters in Manukau.

Under the Human Rights Act 1993 it is illegal to discriminate against people based on their political beliefs.

Cr Quax said today:

"Councillors have been told that those Maori on the General Roll are not as committed to advocacy of Maori issues as those on the Maori Roll. I believe that this elevates the argument for discriminating against Maori on the General Roll to a political decision."

"No evidence exists to support the claim that Maori on the General Roll are any less committed to Maori issues".

The Council may also be in breach of the Local Government Act 2002 which states that Local Authorities must consult with Maori.

"This is reasonable. However it does not state that Council should only consult with Maori on the Maori Roll."

ENDS

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