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Government Has Reneged on Own Law Over Kermadec Bill

Rt Hon Winston Peters

New Zealand First Leader

Member of Parliament for Northland

Government Has Reneged on Own Law Over Kermadec Bill

New Zealand First is not supporting the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary Bill because the government has reneged on its own law, says New Zealand First Leader and Northland Member of Parliament Rt Hon Winston Peters.

In 1992 Mr Peters was one of two National MPs to vote against the Treaty of Waitangi (Fisheries Claims) Settlement Bill, which is where the legal dispute has arisen 24 years later.

“The government is now going back on its word; it’s a breach of simple contract law.

“It’s worth remembering that in 2000 the present Minister for the Environment Dr Nick Smith said in Parliament on the Forest (West Coast Accord) Bill that the bill was an ‘environmental nonsense’ and ‘a gross abuse of Parliament and of process’.

“Dr Smith accused the Labour government of breaching its contract and said the message was ‘if anybody has a contract with this government, the government can breach it if anybody thinks it is out of date, and without any negotiation or discussion with the parties that are affected.’

“Dr Smith’s words have now come back to haunt him,” says Mr Peters.


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