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Another Flip Flop by a National Minister

Rt Hon Winston Peters
New Zealand First Leader
Member of Parliament for Northland

3 DECEMBER 2015

Another Flip Flop by a National Minister – Smith Bows to ‘Brownmail’’

Environment Minister Nick Smith has bowed to “brownmail” over council planning decisions under the RMA.

“In 2004 Dr Smith warned that giving iwi greater powers under the RMA was ‘a revolutionary constitutional change’,” says New Zealand First Leader and Member of Parliament for Northland Rt Hon Winston Peters.

He warned that Maori were holding the country to ransom and effectively asking for ‘brownmail’ (his term) in order for projects to proceed, says Mr Peters.

“Now, in a desperate bid to get RMA changes through, Dr Smith has conveniently changed his tune.

“He has bowed to the demands of the government’s partner, the Maori Party, in giving Maori privileges in planning decisions denied to everyone else.

“This is not what most New Zealanders want but the government is too focused on token progress in the ‘reform’ of the RMA to care.

“Instead of reforming the RMA the government has now saddled councils and communities with a future of acrimonious planning decisions.”

Question to the Minister for the Environment

ENDS

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