Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Labour Gambles With The Navy

Labour’s planned experimentation with the Navy is a dangerous move away from New Zealand’s proven track record with frigates, says North Shore MP, Dr Wayne Mapp.

Dr Mapp says the crisis in East Timor has demonstrated that New Zealand needs at least three frigates to be able to effectively defend our own waters, while at the same time maintain security in our region.

“Even with three, there are substantial risks. At the present time, we have the HMNZS Te Kaha patrolling the Gulf as part of the United Nations sanctions against Iraq, and the HMNZS Canterbury keeping the peace in East Timor. That leaves us with the ageing HMNZS Waikato to protect our valuable Exclusive Economic Zone, and provide critical training and maintenance,” he says.

“A total of four frigates has proven to be the ideal number in satisfying our obligations to our allies, and ensuring the safety of New Zealand’s resources.”

Labour’s desire to replace our frigates with the Danish Standard Flex 3500, is a risky experiment, says Dr Mapp.

“The Danish Standard Flex 3500 will not even enter service with the Danish Navy till 2006. No doubt export models would not be available until 2008 at the earliest. The HMNZS Canterbury retires in 2004, which will leave a gaping hole in our naval capability. New Zealanders cannot be expected to ignore this vulnerability, while Labour sits on its hands and waits for an unproven ship.

“National’s commitment to a balanced force is the proven solution that will ensure our continued safety and that of our allies and neighbours. Let’s not let Labour fly by the seat of its pants, with a Defence policy that is based around cost cutting and risk taking.”

- ENDS -

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Malaysia Exposing Our Dodgy Policies On China

Last week, we all owed a vote of thanks to Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad for breaking with protocol during his bilateral meeting in Singapore with New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern. Reportedly, Mahathir used the photo opportunity phase of the meeting – which usually involves just an exchange of smiles and pleasantries before the media is sent out of the room – to launch into matters of genuine substance.

By doing so, Mahathir usefully exposed how New Zealand is trying to make a virtue out of sitting on the fence over the South China Sea dispute. More>>


Climate Change: Top Academics Call On Government To Take Action

One hundred and fifty academics and researchers from around Aotearoa, including Dame Anne Salmond, Emeriti Professors and several Fellows of the Royal Society, have signed a strongly-worded open letter to the Government demanding bold and urgent action to tackle climate change. More>>


Teacher Qualifications, Class Sizes: Ten Year Plan For Early Learning

“Moving towards 100 percent qualified teachers in early childhood education centres and improving adult:child ratios are among some of the key proposals for change put forward by the sector and experts in the new draft ten year strategic plan for early learning,” Chris Hipkins said. More>>


Teacher Strikes: Meeting, March And Rally In Wellington

Throughout the Wellington region the NZEI rolling strikes entered their final day Friday. Thousands of teachers met in Wellington, Kapiti, Porirua and the Wairarapa. More>>


14/11: Two Years’ Progress Since The Kaikoura Earthquake

Mayor John Leggett said it was a day for reflection, but also a time to recognise the work by many people to support progress towards recovery made across Marlborough since November 2016. More>>


Pike River: Mine Drift Re-Entry Plan To Proceed

“I’ve decided the Te Kāhui Whakamana Rua Tekau Mā Iwa - Pike River Recovery Agency, recommended course of action to enter the drift, using the existing access tunnel, is by far the safest option,” said Andrew Little. More>>


Appointments: New High Commissioner To Australia Announced

“Dame Annette King needs no introduction given her long running career as a parliamentarian where she has previously held a number senior Cabinet portfolios, including Justice, Police and Health. She also was Parliament’s longest serving female MP with 30 years’ service,” said Mr Peters. More>>


Two Years Since Kaikoura: Silvia Cartwright To Lead Inquiry Into EQC

“The inquiry will be the first of its kind under the Public Inquiries Act 2013 and will have all the powers of a Royal Commission, be independent of Government and make its report directly to the Governor-General. More>>





InfoPages News Channels