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Wednesday 10 Mar 2004 Richard Prebble Press Releases -- Treaty of Waitangi & Maori Affairs

ACT Leader Richard Prebble has sent a letter today to the Prime Minister saying that the ACT party does not support a Royal Commission into the Treaty of Waitangi.

"It's 164 years too late," said Mr Prebble.

"It is elitist nonsense to suppose that some wise Commissioners can educate us all into supporting the so-called principles of the Treaty.

"The ACT party has no difficulty with the Treaty that was actually signed by Governor Hobson and the Maori Chiefs. We also strongly support the real principles of the Treaty, which are sovereignty, protection of property rights, and one class of citizenship for all.

"The present problems come from Treaty principle inflation. Unelected judges and unelected bureaucrats have invented new principles. In a democratic country there is only one way to create new law and that is by parliament. Parliament has never, even under this Labour government, ratified any of these so-called principles that are being imposed on the Nation.

"Dr Brash is absolutely right when he says this is first an issue for the voters. After the voters have indicated their will, it is then a matter for parliament.

"Parliament can and should legislate to define what the principles of the Treaty are. I have had a private members bill in the ballot for some time that clearly sets out that the three principles of the Treaty are just sovereignty, property rights and citizenship. The voters realise they have a choice next election.

"No voter has ever written to me asking for a royal commission. The issues are clear and I trust the voters to decide," said Mr Prebble.

For more information visit ACT online at or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at

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