Delamere issues warning to Pacific community in NZ
Immigration Minister, Hon Tuariki Delamere, today issued a warning to members of the Pacific communities in New Zealand to ignore claims from a Maori group that it can protect illegal migrants from the New Zealand Immigration Service.
"In recent months, I have received a rash of documents from a group calling itself the Confederation of Chiefs of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni, which claims to represent a Sovereign Independent Maori Nation.
"These documents purport to show that Pacific people who have been served with a Removal Order for breaching the immigration laws are members of the so-called Sovereign Maori Nation and I am being asked to lift the removal orders on humanitarian grounds.
"There is anecdotal evidence that people are being invited to join this organisation with the promise that they will be protected from the immigration authorities.
"Let me make it very clear that the Confederation of Chiefs has no influence with me or the Immigration Service and anyone who joins them in that hope will be very disappointed.
"Although I have no evidence that payment is being asked to sign up, my advice is that any such request, if it is made, should be rejected immediately," said Mr Delamere.