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Protection of All Black Brand

Protection of All Black Brand is in Government's Court

Contrary to the claim of Sports Minister Trevor Mallard, ACT New Zealand said it would support legislation to protect the All Black name and the registered silver fern, but insisted that enough time be given to ensure the legislation did only that, Sports Spokesman Stephen Franks said today.

"The Government had every chance to do that, as it controls the Parliamentary timetable.

"As Mr Mallard's last comment in his media statement today acknowledges, he has plenty of time to "discuss with the Rugby Union other options that will assist in getting the necessary legal protect in time for the World Cup". The rush and secrecy last week were designed to stampede opponents.

"As the Minister knows, when ACT followed up with the parties said to have been "comfortable" with the Rugby Union's proposal, we were told that they had not even been consulted.

"As sports spokesman and a lawyer I make no apologies for withstanding the Minister's pressures and insisting that the thousands of other users of the fern mark have an opportunity to consider whether their interests are properly protected.

"I have had numerous messages of appreciation from organisations that only heard last Thursday that they could be at risk.

"There is still considerable misinformation. Some potential objectors have been told they need not worry because the fern mark is protected only when it is used in conjunction with the word "All Blacks". That is not what the latest draft provides", Mr Franks said.

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