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Call for Dr. Smith’s resignation


05/09/2016 Call for Dr. Smith’s resignation.

The scaremongering and misrepresentation of the Auckland Unitary council’s long term plan shows that Dr. Nick Smith is deliberately twisting and misrepresenting the facts, and raising fears that important medical research will be banned. Yet he knows any such concern is false. [1]

The AUP [2] expressly excludes medical and veterinary applications stating

“Potential GMO activities of relevance include GM food crops, trees, grasses, animals and pharma crops, but,exclude research within contained laboratories involving GMOs, medical applications involving the manufacture and use of GM products…” (p.2: 1.1)

In seeking to mislead the public, the Minister is following the lead of Federated Farmers of New Zealand. Federated Farmers challenged the right of councils, who govern under the Resource Management Act (RMA), to place precautionary GE wording in their plans, in the Environment Court. The challenge was not upheld. They then appealed the Environment Court’s decision to the High Court, which has now dismissed the appeal. [3]

The Minister's anti-democratic panicked response of introducing a new law that expressly prohibits councils to consider environmental and land use protections around GMO’s, shows a cynical contempt for due process and local democracy.

It is an indictment on Dr. Smith and shows that he is not working for the good of the country but is using his powers and influence to pursue an agenda outside of his responsibilities as a Minister.

This serious breach of conduct transgresses his responsibilities as a minister. He is apparently unable to avoid his conflicts of interest around the GE issue. This terrible situation leads us to call for his resignation as a Minister of the Crown.

References:

[1] Govt to review councils GMO decision http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11703046

[2] Auckland Unitary Plan -Genetically Modified Organismshttp://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/EN/planspoliciesprojects/plansstrategies/unitaryplan/Documents/Section32report/2.49%20Genetically%20Modified%20Organisms%20v2%202013-09-09.pdf

[3] CIV-2015-488-0064 [2016] NZHC 2036

http://www.gefree.org.nz/assets/pdf/CIV2015-488-64-31-08-2016-JUDG.pdf

ENDS

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