Right to water a defining issue for Mayoralty
For immediate release 13 June 2010
Right to water set to be one of defining issues for Wellington Mayoralty
Jack Yan, Wellington’s first openly declared independent Mayoral candidate for election this year, joined protestors in Wellington’s Cuba Mall on Saturday in challenging a Parliamentary Bill that could in the future see Wellingtonians lose ownership and control of the city’s water infrastructure and costing policies.
“I fully support the growing opposition to aspects of the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill that has already seen mounting cross-party opposition in Parliament and that saw protests occur in 12 other cities around New Zealand over the weekend,” said Jack Yan, Wellington Mayoral candidate.
“What Wellington does with its water supply on behalf of its ratepayers and residents is a defining issue for this year’s election. This is not a central government issue – it is a local government issue and one of the six elements of the platform I put forward when entering the Mayoral contest last year”.
“I believe that the right to water - without any risk of its ownership or control becoming privatised - is a fundamental right that needs to be protected. Water is literally a public good. We’ve seen what a mess the electricity market has turned into, and the international experience in cities like Paris has shown that a leasing approach to water supply services only delivers one thing: higher costs, less accountability and reduced services”.
“In Wellington, we’ve already seen that this council puts residential ratepayers last when it comes to the way rates are proportioned. If water went the same way the losers definitely wouldn’t be business – the losers would be ordinary householders”.
“As Mayor of Wellington City I would be pushing for more action on water conservation solutions that keep water in the hands of the people of Wellington, and am seeking the view of everyone in the community on this and other election year issues at my website www.yourwellington.org”.