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National Denies Solution for Southland DHB

Ria Bond MP

New Zealand First List Member of Parliament based in Invercargill
11 MAY 2016

National Denies Solution for Southland DHB

Democracy in New Zealand took another hit from the government in Parliament on Tuesday night, says New Zealand First.

“They voted down a proposal from New Zealand First in the committee stage of the NZ Public Health and Disability (Southern DHB) Elections Bill which squashed any chance of locals getting a voice on the Southern DHB,” says Ria Bond, New Zealand First List MP based in Invercargill.

“The proposal would have allowed commissioners to be appointed to the SDHB board, with local elections for the remaining board seats.

“We offered a solution in which everyone wins but the government wants commissioners only; not locals. That’s undemocratic.

”The problem is the government doesn’t support ideal solutions which is why we have the debacle over the Compass food contract with locals at loggerheads with the minister over the issue.

“The government is also being inconsistent.

“Environment Canterbury (ECan) will not return to a fully elected council until 2019 after councillors were sacked in 2010 and replaced with councillors.

“However, the government is pursuing legislation that after the next election would establish a transitional council for ECan, which is just the same as NZ First’s proposal for the SDHB.

“If the government is willing to adopt this model for ECan, why can’t they do the same for the SDHB?

“Everyone wants to see the Southern DHB succeed but that can only happen when locals are represented,” says Ria Bond.


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