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Reprehensible Political Bias Against Alliance

Reprehensible Act of Political Bias Against Alliance!

Media Statement

For Immediate Release

July 19th 2002

Reprehensible Act of Political Bias Against Alliance!

Matt McCarten, number three on the Alliance party list, and President of the party has been banned from taking part in an election forum at the University of Auckland on Monday 22nd July from 12.30 - 2pm in the Quad, Princes St.

When Staunch Alliance National Spokesperson Julie Fairey contacted the event organiser, Simon Coffey, to confirm McCarten's presence at the forum, she was told that Matt would not be speaking. On calling to clear up the confusion, Fairey was told that the Alliance was not invited to the forum, which will have representatives from Labour, National, the Greens and Act and hung up on.

"This is ridiculous," said Ms Fairey. "The Alliance has a long history of fighting for students, as the only party fighting for free education."

"The organiser of this event, Simon Coffey, was incredibly rude, when I was merely ringing to clear up some confusion about Matt's attendance," said Fairey. "But I'm sure Coffey's opposition to a voice at the forum which would advocate for the policies Labour says are too hard, abolishing tertiary fees, reinstating the universal student allowance, and eliminating the loans scheme, has nothing to do with his membership of the Labour party."

"Staunch Alliance, the youth wing of the Alliance party, has been one of the most active political clubs on campus in recent times," said Fairey. "We will definitely be on campus on Monday, with Matt, to push our cause, despite threats of security guards from Mr Coffey," said Fairey.

"On current polling in Waitakere and Tainui, the Alliance will definitely be represented in the next Parliament," said Fairey. "To shut out the strongest advocate for students is a reprehensible act of political bias."

Contacts:

Julie Fairey

National Spokesperson for Staunch Alliance, Alliance candidate for Epsom and number 16 on the Party List

Phone 021 172 3467

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