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Dunne Releases Atoearoa New Zealand Day Bill

17 February 2000

DUNNE RELEASES ATOEAROA NEW ZEALAND DAY BILL

United New Zealand Party leader, Hon Peter Dunne, has today released a discussion draft of his Member's Bill to establish a new national day.

The Bill, titled the Aotearoa New Zealand Day Bill, proposes renaming Waitangi Day as Aotearoa New Zealand Day.

"Sadly, the divisiveness of recent years means that for many New Zealanders, February 6th has become a symbol of the things that divide us, rather than a day which brings us together and genuinely celebrates our cultural and ethnic diversity."

"It is time to rekindle the vision of Norman Kirk and establish February 6th as a day on which every New Zealander celebrates with pride and confidence the unique gift we all possess by virtue of being New Zealanders," Mr Dunne says.

Mr Dunne says he is open to argument that Aotearoa New Zealand Day should be on another day than Waitangi Day.

"That is an important point which could be debated before a select committee once the Bill is before Parliament," he says.

An important feature of the Bill is its proposal that Aotearoa New Zealand Day be "Monday-ised", and held on the Monday of the week in which February 6th occurs.

"I think it is important that the day be one which encourages celebration, and is not disruptive to business and schools by occurring on different days every year."

"One of the best things about Waitangi Day this year was the variety of ceremonies that occurred over the weekend it was held."

"Having it on the same weekend every year should encourage even greater celebration and diversity," he says.

Mr Dunne is welcoming comment on his Bill, which he is entering in the regular ballot to get Member's Bills into Parliament.

"I would love to see the Bill become law this year," he says.
ENDS

Hon Peter Dunne

AOTEAROA NEW ZEALAND DAY BILL

ANALYSIS
Title
Short Title
Aotearoa New Zealand Day to be a day of commemoration
Observance of Aotearoa New Zealand Day
Public Holiday for Northland
Act to bind the Crown
Repeals and consequential amendments


A BILL INTITULED
An Act to make provision for the observance of the 6th day of February in each year as a public holiday to commemorate both the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi and New Zealand's national identity

BE IT ENACTED by the General Assembly of New Zealand in Parliament assembled, as follows:

Short Title - This Act may be cited as the Aotearoa New Zealand Day Act 2000.

Aotearoa New Zealand Day to be a day of commemoration - In commemoration of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi on the 6th day of February 1840, and to celebrate New Zealand's national identity, the 6th day of February in each year shall be known as Aotearoa New Zealand Day.

Observance of Aotearoa New Zealand Day - Aotearoa New Zealand Day shall be observed as a public holiday throughout New Zealand on the Monday of the week in which it falls.

Public holiday for Northland - (1) The Minister of Internal Affairs shall, by notice in the Gazette, appoint a day specified in the notice to be observed as a public holiday in Northland (being that portion of the North Island being for the time being within the boundaries of the Northland Regional Council).
(2) Before issuing a notice under subsection (1) of this section, the Minister of Internal Affairs shall consult with all territorial local authorities whose districts are situated within Northland.

Act to bind the Crown - This Act shall bind the Crown.

Repeals and consequential amendments - The following enactments are hereby repealed:
The Waitangi Day Act 1976


New Zealand's Liberal Party


MEDIA STATEMENT
HON PETER DUNNE, MP
LEADER UNITED NEW ZEALAND
Parliament Buildings, Wellington 1.
h (04)471 9410 or (025) 469 808. Fax (04)499 7266.
e-mail: peter.dunne@parliament.govt.nz. Internet Address: http://www.united.org.nz

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