Transparent Government Is Paramount For Democracy
My National caucus and I want to know what Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern really thinks about the report called He Puapua that Labour commissioned in 2019. He Puapua in its un-redacted format sets out a roadmap to co-governance between the Crown and Māori by 2040.
Although it has never been announced, it proposes separate Māori authorities across multiple layers of government.
It proposes a Māori Health Authority, separate court and justice systems, Māori ownership over the foreshore and seabed, Māori wards in councils and constitutional reform to consider matters such as a Māori Parliament or Upper House for New Zealand.
A couple of its recommendations, such as the Māori Health Authority and Māori council wards, have been put forward as policy and in the case of Maori wards in Local Government, implemented already. The Prime Minister has not said that they are part of a wider plan, but neither of these policies were signalled in Labour’s election policy promises and plans before the 2020 election.
If He Puapua is implemented in its entirety, New Zealand will cease to be a democracy in which all people have equal representation, and would instead operate as a two-system state.
Why has this not been shared with New Zealanders?
National’s position is clear. We stand for open transparent government and will not accept the implementation of two-system state by stealth.
We support targeted programmes based on need, such as Whānau Ora, but dividing our country along racial lines when it comes to running core services is a step too far.
National is the party that believes in equality and believes we must not be divided by ethnicity or race. We are better together.
We need an honest, respectful and open debate where every voice is heard and democracy is upheld.
There are many problems with our current Health System which this current government has not addressed in four years. These problems are not necessarily to do with underfunding but they do reflect underperformance.
By way of an example it is alarming that a $25million fund set up by the government in July 2020 has yet to fund anything or anyone in regard to its purpose that is supporting student mental health. The first part of the money was intended to fund help for students when needed. Now it has been channelled to the government’s new polytech, Te Pukenga which says no money has been spent because the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health cannot decide who will be responsible for the administration of the fund.
Add to this that the government’s health minister has stood by a 2018 official report on Mental Health outcomes that omits any numbers showing negative results.
We now have people in the Southland DHB who need urgent radio treatment in relation to a cancer diagnosis waiting for weeks or being asked to fund their own treatment. Some are dying before they get the treatment they need.
Also we have Pharmac shown to be 20th in the list of 22 OECD countries in providing medicine for patients generally. There are currently 118 proposals for 73 medicines to be approved by Pharmac which is up from 27 proposals in 2014.
These issues are bad enough but add into the mix that the proposed Maori Health Authority would be given the power of veto over all of the public health budget that the government has agreed to and what will the results be then?
It is no wonder that Finance Minister Grant Robertson has had to set up a Ministry of Delivery or an implementation unit which will to keep an eye on government promises and ensure that they are being followed through especially as the government has revealed that it has found $1billion that is unspent. We want to know where the $1billion came from and why Ministers need someone to check that they have spent their budgets?
If you are in Papakura on Saturday 8th May there is a big Streetfest on in the main streets from 10am with stalls, shopping, food and lots of entertainment for everyone young and old.