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ACT Launches Land Access Tour

ACT Launches Land Access Tour

ACT New Zealand Rural Affairs Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff today launched ACT's bus tour in opposition to Labour's land access proposals in Wanaka - the start of a four-week campaign that will see him tour the length and breath of the country listening to the rural heartland's concerns.

"I will be visiting rural communities and attending farmers' meetings around the country, urging farmers to fight the Government's Mugabe-style attempt to deny them their property rights," Mr Eckhoff said.

"The tour will coincide with Cabinet's consideration of the issue in December. It's absolutely crucial that farmers voice their opposition to Labour's proposals. A strong message to the Government, that unfettered public access through their land is unacceptable, will see these proposals scrapped - the 'fart tax' is proof of that.

"Land access is yet another poke in the eye for rural communities by this anti-farmer Government. It comes hot on the heels of ACC levy hikes, higher petrol prices, school closures and police downsizing. Once again, Rural Affairs Minister Jim Sutton has failed to stand-up for farmers at the Cabinet table.

"I want to make this point perfectly clear: my campaign is about defending property rights - not denying public access. ACT applauds and encourages farmers allowing the public entry through their land, but here's the crux: landowners must retain their right to say who can and can't be on their property.

"ACT is at the forefront of the campaign to protect farmers' property rights, and pledges to stand shoulder to shoulder with heartland New Zealand against Labour's latest assault on rural communities. The Government mustn't be allowed to steal the very rights that are the foundation of our country as a free, democratic nation," Mr Eckhoff said.

This week, Gerry will be visiting Wanaka, Queenstown, Invercargill, Gore, Oamaru, Waimate, Timaru, Ashburton, West Coast-Buller, Nelson and Blenheim.

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