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Peters Pledges Coalition With The People

Media Release
12 November 2003

Peters Pledges Coalition With The People

New Zealand First has pledged to “enter a coalition with the people” by introducing binding Citizens Initiated Referenda and reducing the number of MPs to 99.

Rt Hon Winston Peters told a meeting in Wellington today that only seven years after the first MMP election, New Zealanders were again suffering from an “illusion of democracy” with their two ticks on ballot papers actually setting up three years of “political tyranny”.

“MMP has been perverted back into a form of FPP in which a Labour minority government rules unchecked through backroom deals done with two minor parties.”

Mr Peters said that ordinary people felt powerless and helpless because they had no say on momentous issues such as access to the foreshore and seabed, abolition of the Privy Council and legalising prostitution.

“In 1999 an overwhelming number of people called for a reduction in the number of MPs and tougher punishment for offenders but an arrogant government did not listen. “

New Zealand First aims to make Parliament itself a more responsive and accountable institution, and to give greater power to the community by:

- Introducing Direct Democracy by way of binding Citizens Initiated Referenda
- Reducing the size of Parliament;
- Reducing the number of MPs in Cabinet to 14.

Binding referenda will be triggered by petitions achieving the support of 10 percent of the electorate and will be conducted on the first Saturday of November each year or in conjunction with a general election.

“Democracy is too important to be left to politicians. It is far better to rely on the commonsense of the people to make decisions on the important issues we face,” said Winston Peters.

Full details of the policy can be found on www.NZFIRST.org.nz

ENDS


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