Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


National to press for electoral referendum

Sunday 12 March 2000

National to press for electoral referendum

Anti-democratic and dictatorial is the only way to describe Labour’s attitude to the select committee on electoral reform, Opposition Leader Jenny Shipley said today.

“National believes New Zealanders are being shut out of the process by Labour’s refusal to include a referendum in the terms of reference for the review of the electoral system,” Mrs Shipley said.

“New Zealanders deserve to have a say. It’s their system, not the politicians’, and National intends to make sure they have a say by introducing a private member’s bill that requires a referendum to be held.

“National has always believed that people should have a say on this question. The future of the electoral system is too important to be decided by a group of MPs, who inevitably have an interest in the system,” Mrs Shipley said.

“We believe people would have more faith in the electoral system if it is one they have debated and decided on for themselves.”

Mrs Shipley today released correspondence between herself and Prime Minister Helen Clark and Attorney-General Margaret Wilson, which reveals that the Government has turned down all National’s proposals for the review.

In February Mrs Shipley wrote to the Prime Minister with four concerns:

 The review should not be chaired by the Speaker, whose office should be non-political and above controversy.
 The make-up of the committee should reflect the proportionality of Parliament.
 A referendum should be held to give all New Zealanders a say.
 Consideration should be given to entrenching any future provisions.

“Labour is souring the process before it has even begun.

“It is outrageous that large parties with 39 MPs get only two people on the committee while a party with only one MP gets one member. The minor parties will have a say that is way out of proportion with their size.

“Heavy-handed arrogance of the sort Labour is showing in its handling of the review is precisely what people want to get rid of.

“This is not a good sign for how the process will be run,” Mrs Shipley said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


'Public Safety': Next Firearms Reform Plan Announced

The next Arms Amendment Bill will:

• Establish a register of firearms and licence holders to be rolled out over 5 years
• Tighten the rules to get and keep a firearms licence
• Tighten the rules for gun dealers to get and keep a licence
• Require licences to be renewed every five years
• Introduce a new system of warning flags so Police can intervene and seek improvement if they have concerns about a licence holder’s behaviour
• Prohibit visitors to New Zealand from buying a gun... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Being Australia's Pacific Go-Fers

Inevitably, there was an aspect of ‘what might have been’ about the weekend’s meeting in Canberra between PM Jacinda Ardern and her Australian counterpart, Scott Morrison... More>>


RNZ: Trades Hall Bombing Case Re-Opened, Evidence Released

The cold case has been reopened and the police have recently revealed more details about the bomb's components - including that it was wrapped in a 1977 edition of The Evening Post. More>>

Safety: Govt Targets Fewer Deaths On The Road

“Most roads deaths and serious injuries are preventable and too many New Zealanders have lost their lives or been seriously injured in crashes that could have been prevented by road safety upgrades,” said Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter. More>>


Pay Rise Delay: Teachers Unions Plan Legal Action Against Novopay

Both of the teachers unions - NZEI and the PPTA - have confirmed they will be taking legal action against Novopay. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On What’s Wrong With Wellington

For many Wellingtonians, it hasn’t been the normal hardships – the workings of central government and the lousy weather – that have recently pushed their tolerance into the red zone. It has been the inability of local government to maintain even the basics. More>>


Emission Statement: 'Consensus Reached' On Agriculture

Today the Government launched a consultation document, informed by the work of the Interim Climate Change Committee (ICCC), on how to bring agriculture into the emissions trading scheme, a key part of the Government’s plan to tackle climate change and reduce New Zealand’s emissions. More>>





InfoPages News Channels