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Time to Push Harder for Supreme Court Referendum

Time to Push Harder for Supreme Court Referendum

When the Supreme Court Bill becomes law with the smallest of majorities later today, proponents of a referendum will continue their efforts, New Zealand Business Roundtable executive director Roger Kerr said.

"The government should not assume that the fight ends today.

"New Zealanders have been denied their chance to have a say on this crucial legislation by politicians who believe it is 'too complicated for ordinary folk to understand'.

"The Labour-Progressive government has refused to listen to business, to Maori, or to electors. There has been a litany of misinformation on the issue - most recently the suggestion that the British government is about to act itself to cut off access to the Privy Council. There is no substance to this claim, and opposition parties are right to say they would attempt to restore appeals.

"The Greens are making a mistake. Their policy at the last election was:

"Removing Privy Council appeal rights or any move to a Republic, would need to be preceded by a full dialogue between the Tiriti parties to agree on how the Tiriti relationship would be given effect in any new arrangement."

"A few hui do not amount to a dialogue. Submissions to Select Committee showed that Maori stand with business organisations on this issue.

"If the petition to hold a referendum is successful, it will deliver a clear message from electors appalled by this abuse of power," Mr Kerr said today.

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