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Govt rides rough shod over democratic rights

David Cunliffe
Labour Leader

28 February 2014

Govt rides rough shod over democratic rights

The Government has today revealed its true contempt for democratic rights by ploughing on with plans to override Parliamentary majority and gag local communities, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.

“National's approach to offshore drilling, paid parental leave, asset sales and ongoing issues facing Canterbury shows it has stopped listening to New Zealanders.

“Labour’s Paid Parental Leave Bill today passed another hurdle but Finance Minister Bill English continues to threaten to veto our six month extension, ignoring the will of Parliament and widespread public support.

“Kiwis also lose their rights to have a say on exploratory drilling off their local beaches under new rules coming into effect today.

“This is an outrage and the latest from a Government which continues to chip away at democracy.

“It follows Prime Minister John Key ignoring the rejection of asset sales by two-thirds of referendum respondents, the Government’s refusal to reinstate ECan and the slashing of democratic representation on student councils.

“The muzzling of local communities concerned about oil exploration shows the Government has once against backed the interests of multinational corporations over the rights of ordinary New Zealanders.

“New Zealanders have a right to a say in what happens in their oceans.

“A Labour government will make sure deep sea drilling consents are subject to full transparency and require international best practice.

“Labour will insist all consents, aside from minor variations to existing approvals, are notified. We will also ensure there are full environmental clean-up plans and guarantee industry is fully liable for any adverse impacts before any consent is even considered,” David Cunliffe says.

ENDS

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