Parliament

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

 

NZ Lose Access to Neutral Legal Umpires

ACT Justice Spokesman Stephen Franks says the move by the Government for New Zealand to sever links with the Privy Council means we will lose a unique competitive advantage for a small remote country - access to neutral international referees to uphold impartial justice.

"Margaret Wilson has claimed it would be a sign of this country's 'maturity' to abolish the right of appeal to the Privy Council. But the maturity argument seems the preoccupation of people worried about post-colonialism and sovereignty. Most of us would rather look at the quality, independence, and low cost of access to the world's best umpires. Worries about colonial cringe are for those who still feel subordinate.

"The real risks to independence and sovereignty stem from Ms Wilson's continuation of recent politically correct policies to subject New Zealand law, New Zealand courts, and ordinary New Zealanders, to the jurisdiction and politically-calculated decisions of unelected United Nations committees, often comprising people who don't have any respect for our rule of law tradition.

"People with constitutional concerns will now worry about Margaret Wilson getting an opportunity to stack a new court with politically-correct representatives of favoured activist groups. The unhappy appointments of Ms Bathgate and Ms Henry do not offer us any reassurance.

"This Government move can be seen as a symbolic act rather than dealing with the type of real issue that worries productive New Zealanders: enforcement of the laws we already have, and reform of obstructive legal processes like the RMA.

"This need not be a foregone conclusion. I doubt Cabinet would stand fully behind Ms Wilson if it became clear the country said: `Don't do it'. I consulted widely with ACT members and interested parties both in person and through the ACT website. Most of the people I have contacted are opposed to us cutting off our access to Privy Council standards of judging and independence.

"We should judge courts on the quality of their judgements and their impartiality. The arguments for the Privy Council are like the arguments for having international sports referees as umpires. They do not end all arguments about bias, or lack of local knowledge, but they do make it easier to get that most vital thing - justice that is impartial," Stephen Franks said.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods ( is the dollar up or down? ) last night’s outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country..>>>More


Reaction

Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome | Greens on their joining Govt | EDS welcomes new govt | Immigrant groups worry | Feds ready to engage new coalition government | Labour Ministers of the Crown announced

 

Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>

ALSO:


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>

ALSO:

Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election