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Hide Takes Defence

Hide Takes Defence

Tuesday 22 Jun 2004

Rodney Hide - Press Releases - Other

ACT New Zealand Leader Rodney Hide today announced changes in ACT's line-up following the change in leadership.

"Government's first duty is the security of its citizens. Successive governments have run down our military's training, equipment and morale. I believe that defence should be every government's number one priority. Accordingly, I have taken responsibility for Defence and Veterans Affairs," Mr Hide said.

"I am pro-Defence and pro-military. But I will be holding off making policy pronouncements until I have done the necessary work and engaged in appropriate consultation. I believe the booklet `Choice or Chance', written by six eminent New Zealand defence experts provides a sound basis for policy and consultation with all New Zealanders.

"We all want peace. But a well-run and well-resourced military is essential to ensuring our peace.

"I will also assume portfolio responsibility for the Departments of SIS and the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

"My big job as Leader is to explain to hardworking Kiwis why they support ACT's vision of a free and prosperous New Zealand. I have taken no other portfolio responsibilities. That underscores how seriously I am treating our country's security responsibilities.

"Our second priority is Finance. That's why I have asked Richard Prebble to take responsibility for Finance. I am pleased that he has accepted this important role. He's already on the job with the Finance and Expenditure Select Committee representing us in Canberra.

"ACT MPs have built up formidable experience and understanding in their areas of responsibility. As we now campaign with Don Brash to rid the country of this hopeless Labour Government, I have left the other major portfolio responsibilities unchanged. I have given our MPs the task of working to provide New Zealanders with the good government New Zealanders so richly deserve. Our task is not just to replace the present government, but to make our a great country even better," Mr Hide said.

ENDS

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