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Put Airforce Redundancies On Hold

New Zealand First spokesman for Defence, Ron Mark MP, is calling on the Labour Alliance government to put its plan to make Airforce personnel redundant, on hold by posting them as loan service personnel to the Australian, British, or US Airforces.

“It is a widely held view that when Labour was elected to govern, they were not given a mandate to disband our nation’s air combat capability. Since they announced their decision, a number of parties have indicated that if they are elected to govern at the 2002 election, they will reinstate that capability.

“Given the latest reports which indicate that personnel will be made redundant between January and July 2002, and that a general election is due in November 2002, I believe that it is improper for Labour and the Alliance to proceed any further,” said Mr Mark.

“Accordingly, I believe that instead of making these personnel redundant, we should simply post them as loan service staff to the Australian, British or US Defence Forces so we retain their skills.

“Then if Labour or the Alliance win the next election, those of us who do not share their views will have to live with it. If they do not, New Zealand will be in a far better position to resurrect our air combat capability,” said Mr Mark.

Ends.

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