Now That’s Dopey!
17 May 2002
Nandor Fronting Laila’s Drug Programme? Now That’s Dopey!
New Zealand First has harsh criticism of Alliance Leader and Youth Affairs Minister Laila Harré’s drug education initiative, most notably the decision to have pro-cannabis activist Nandor Tanczos front the programme.
“This programme is demented and quite frankly obscene. Every week we talk to school teachers and headmasters around the country and they are telling us that action is needed to combat the use of drugs by pupils, most notably cannabis,” said Leader Winston Peters.
“Instead we have this minister wasting $450,000 on yet another ‘Ministerial Advisory Group’ to investigate drug use. We don’t need any more studies, this has been done to death already. We know already that drugs are harmful and we need to keep them out of our schools and away from our children. Instead of evaluating programmes we should be concentrating on stopping youth from taking drugs.
“We already know that drugs are a growing problem. We already know that organized crime is targeting our children with drugs. We know which programmes work.
“The money would be far better spent on existing groups such as FADE who are committed to eliminating drugs from schools, and spent on existing police programmes.
“We cannot comprehend the bizarre decision to make Nandor Tanczos front the campaign. This is really putting the fox in charge of the hen house. The truth is that this group will be used as a de-facto promotional agency for Nandor and his ilk.
“The choice is a bizarre one—next they’ll be saying that they’ll be handing out Timothy Leary (60s drug guru) books. Just a few weeks ago Nandor Tanczos was encouraging drug users to ‘clog the courts’.
“New Zealand First’s position is clear. We oppose any liberalization of drug laws, including cannabis. We have drawn a line in the sand on this issue—we will not support any moves to liberalise drug use. We do not believe that there is any need for any more studies or evaluations. We believe in sending drug users to treatment, stopping drugs at the school gates and sending dealers to prison,” concluded Mr Peters.