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Membership of Commission must be broadened

John Luxton
Opposition Industry Spokesperson
Wednesday 19 April 2000

Membership of Commission must be broadened

Opposition Industry spokesperson John Luxton today wrote to the Government urging wider membership for the Royal Commission on Genetic Engineering.

"As the Opposition's Agriculture spokesperson, Gavan Herlihy, has said, it is unbalanced.

"It is ludicrous that decisions on the future of this industry will be made by a Commission that lacks perspective from the productive sector.

"I today wrote to the Minister for the Environment, Marian Hobbs, and the Minister of Agriculture, Jim Sutton, recommending that they approach either of the two recently retired Chairmen of the New Zealand Dairy Board, Sir Dryden Spring or Mr John Storey, to sit on the Royal Commission on Genetic Engineering.

"As Gavan Herlihy said, a Commission consisting of a Judge, a Lecturer, a Reverend and a Maori may be politically correct, but makes no recognition of the potential importance of biotechnology to both agriculture and industry in New Zealand.

"The skewed membership of the Commission will raise real questions about any findings it may conclude," Mr Luxton said.

Ends

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