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Green conference supports Ngawha protestors

4 June 2002

Green conference supports Ngawha protestors

The Green Party conference over the weekend passed a unanimous motion supporting the people of Ngawha in their opposition to a new prison at Ngawha Springs. A koha was collected and will be delivered by Jeanette Fitzsimons later in the week.

"We are fully supportive of the protest. The news today that kaumatua had been arrested on the site was a shock. I am disgusted by the actions of the Corrections Department," said Justice spokesperson Nandor Tanczos today.

Nandor said he understood the Minister for Corrections Matt Robson himself had invoked the Trespass Act. "If that is the case then shame on him.

The Minister says protesters should have waited for the outcome of the appeal but the point is that construction had already begun, despite the appeal."

Nandor said that Mr Robson's handling of the issue had been disappointing from the beginning.

"Matt Robson built his reputation on liberal politics including opposition to prisons. I just can't see how he reconciles that with his unreasonable attitude on Ngawha," said Nandor.

Nandor said the protest was the result of the community feeling it had not been heard. He commended the people protesting at the site for their commitment to non-violence.


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