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Maori Won’t Be Privy To Anything

Media Release
17 September 2003

Maori Won’t Be Privy To Anything

New Zealand First Maori Affairs spokesperson Bill Gudgeon says it is not in the interest of Maori to axe links with the Privy Council and set up a local Supreme Court.

“Maori signed the Treaty of Waitangi with the Crown and it is important that we retain that legal connection if fair decisions are to be made,” said Mr Gudgeon.

“No real consultation has taken place with Maori about the Government’s decision to stop using the Privy Council as our final legal recourse.

“For many Maori the Privy Council is seen as a protecting factor for issues relating to the Treaty of Waitangi.

“It is absolutely essential that Maori have access to a quality legal system that is not only fair, but is seen to be fair and above any political interference.

“The Privy Council has been part of New Zealand’s judicial system for a long time and has served New Zealand and Maori well so why change it now?” asked Mr Gudgeon.

ENDS

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