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Strength to care in fight against P

Hon Jim Anderton

Minister of Agriculture, Minister for Biosecurity
Minister of Fisheries, Minister of Forestry
Associate Minister of Health
Associate Minister for Tertiary Education

Progressive Leader

12 May 2008

Strength to care in fight against P

The Government is looking forward to National Party backing for further measures to combat P, now that the Opposition has finally woken up to the threat the drug poses, Progressive Party leader Jim Anderton said today.

Back in the 1990s, National had one good idea about community drug action – community-based programmes called CAYADS.

“They worked well, so I expanded the programme from 3 to 24.”

Jim Anderton, the associate health minister in charge of the Government’s drugs policy, said that John Key didn’t even seem to know these groups even existed, raising the question we’ve come to expect from John Key.

“What research has he done? It looks like he’s made it up on the hoof.

“National has always relegated responsibility for P to a junior backbencher. As a result, National MPs have been too lazy to follow the huge amount of work that has been done.

“First off, the re-classification of methamphetamine as a Class A controlled drug in 2003 gave police powers to search and seize without a warrant, and the re-classification increased the maximum jail term for manufacturing or supplying methamphetamine increasing from 14 years to life imprisonment.

“Further amendments to the Misuse of Drugs Act set the presumption of supply for methamphetamine at 5 grams, and provided Police and the Customs Service with enhanced powers to deal with methamphetamine and precursors.

“$55 million has been allocated to Police, Customs, Institute of Environmental Science and Research (ESR), and CAYADs to tackle P labs, imports of the drug’s components, and community measures.

“As usual, John Key hasn’t done his homework. This raises the question – when will he start practicing to qualify to properly run the country?”
Jim Anderton said the two most dangerous drugs in New Zealand are tobacco and alcohol.

“Alcohol is linked to the overwhelming majority of violent criminal activity, and 4700 New Zealanders die every year from the use of tobacco – which you can buy legally at the corner dairy.

“Does he know these facts? It’s easy to target P, but not so easy to tackle the most dangerous drugs in New Zealand.”


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