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Public submissions invited on the Referendums Framework Bill

Minister of Justice

Pānui Pāpāho

Media Statement

6 August 2019

Justice Minister Andrew Little has welcomed the first reading of the Referendums Framework Bill in Parliament today.

The Referendums Framework Bill sets up the mechanics of any referendum to be held during the 2020 general election. It does not include specific cannabis referendum-related material. The Bill has now been referred to Parliament’s Justice select committee.

“The select committee process is very important, and I encourage members of the public to have their say on the Bill when the Committee calls for submissions later this week” says Andrew Little.

“This Bill paves the way for the holding of a referendum on legalising the personal use of recreational cannabis, which the Government has announced will be held with the 2020 General Election”.

The basis of the question on personal use of cannabis, a draft Bill, will come out of a cross-party Parliamentary group that every party has been invited to participate in.

“We have deliberately created a generic Bill because there is discussion of a possible referendum being held in 2020 on the End of Life Choice Bill” says Andrew Little.

The End of Life Choice Bill is a non-Government bill which is currently before Parliament. A decision will be made on whether this Bill will be put to a referendum as part of the Committee of the Whole debate.

The cannabis referendum question on the ballot paper will be approved by the Government later this year and enacted through an Order-in-Council in early 2020.


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