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Peters Tells Nats To Think Of NZ

Media Release
18 March 2004

Peters Tells Nats To Think Of NZ

Rt Hon Winston Peters has urged Don Brash to take a deep breath and start thinking seriously about extricating National from its impossible position over Treaty of Waitangi issues and the foreshore and seabed.

Mr Peters today rubbished a claim by Dr Brash that New Zealand First had done a “U turn” by discussing a Royal Commission on the Treaty with the Government and reiterating party policy on the foreshore and seabed legislation.

“We have some reservations about a commission on Treaty issues but the Prime Minister approached us in good faith and we have responded in the interest of solving serious problems that we have raised continuously for the past 16 years.

‘We are always prepared to work with other parties, despite our political differences, if the outcome is for a better New Zealand. We suggest that Don Brash should extend his horizons past his big business interests and think of the interests of all New Zealanders.”

Mr Peters said that he had laid out conditions under which New Zealand First would support a commission, including input into the terms of reference and selecting the members.

“Keeping the foreshore and seabed issue separate is one of these conditions. We offered two weeks ago to support the Government if it agreed to Crown ownership.

“National Party staff spend a lot of time in the New Zealand First website plagiarising material for speeches and press releases. Surely they have told Dr Brash that we have not moved one centimeter from our original position on the foreshore and seabed.

“Vesting ownership in the Crown on behalf of all New Zealanders and sorting out customary use under the umbrella of Crown ownership is the only system that can work and we have said so from day one.

“Dr Brash would do well to start putting positive solutions forward instead of standing in his glasshouse throwing stones,” said Mr Peters.

ENDS

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