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Racial Preferment Leads To Racism - Prebble

Tuesday 13th Jul 1999
Richard Prebble
Media Release -- Governance & Constitution

ACT Leader Richard Prebble says recent calls by Tuariki Delamere and Tau Henare show the link between racial preferment and racism.

"Mr Delamere's call for racial quotas in employment comes on the heels of Mr Henare's attack on multi culturalism in favour of Maori culture," Mr Prebble said.

"It shows that where you have MPs elected in racial electorates, it leads to racism.

"Mr Henare and Delamere have decided the only way they can be elected is by making racist appeals to their electorate.

"No MP who represents a multi racial seat would advocate racial quotas or denigrate the culture of any of their constituents.

"It's time we started learning from the Balkans before we find ourselves repeating their history.

"The United Nations recently concluded that all electorates in Bosnia needed to be redrawn to make them multi-ethnic because in the first UN election where the electorates followed racial boundaries, to the UN's horror, the extreme nationalists got elected.

"The sort of nonsense that Delamere and Henare are coming out with only varies in degree with the sort of nonsense that racists and extreme nationalists spout anywhere in the world.

"Racism is wrong. There's no such thing as positive discrimination - for every person positively discriminated in favour of, by definition, someone is being negatively discriminated against,

"What Messrs Henare and Delamere are really raising is a huge social cost to New Zealand of continuing to have a form of apartheid in our electoral system. Special Maori seats should be abolished so that every MP realises they are there to serve the whole country and not a special interest group, and especially not one selected by race."

ENDS

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