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Overstayers Receiving Whanau Ora Funding An Outrage

Rt Hon Winston Peters
New Zealand First Leader
27 November 2012

Overstayers Receiving Whanau Ora Funding An Outrage

New Zealand First has obtained documents which show Whanau Ora funding is being used on immigrants with substance abuse issues who are in the country illegally.

Rt Hon Winston Peters says the documents obtained through the Official Information Act highlight yet another serious flaw with the Whanau Ora scheme that in a recent report was acknowledged as lacking transparency and monitoring.

“The Whanau Ora scheme is a tangled mess but it hasn’t stopped us from finding illegal ‘overstayers’ with serious substance abuse issues who are being given taxpayers money.

“The real question that must be answered by the Maori Party is how much funding is being syphoned off through Whanau Ora into the pockets of illegal immigrants?”

Mr Peters says the documents show that families with serious alcohol, drug, family violence, and English language issues can land in New Zealand and apply for Whanau Ora funding.

“Importing a problem and then expecting New Zealand taxpayers to foot the bill to resolve the issue through such an impotent funding mechanism as Whanau Ora is deplorable.

“We accept that some Pasifika families who immigrate to New Zealand will need special help, just as families from other ethnic backgrounds also require assistance.

“What we don’t accept is that the race-based, touchy-feely Whanau Ora slush fund is the right funding mechanism to help struggling Maori families,” says Mr Peters.




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