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Residency Approvals Revoked

"I have today reversed the immigration approvals given to two groups of investors by the former Immigration Minister," Acting Minister of Immigration Wyatt Creech said today.

"The Prime Minister asked me last night to investigate the residence approvals. I have done that and the approvals have been revoked.

"On 23 November the previous Minister of Immigration went against Government policy and the advice of the Prime Minister. He lowered long-standing Cabinet approved requirements and informed the agents for 21 people that he would approve temporary visas/permits and residence permits if they invested in Maori or rural ventures.

"I have received advice from officials, confirmed by Crown Law that the purported approvals are able to be rescinded. I have moved quickly to rescind them.

"Letters informing those involved of the reversal of the decisions will be delivered personally today.

"I have instructed the New Zealand Immigration Service not to issue the visas and permits to those involved on the basis indicated by the previous Minister.

"If those involved wish to apply through the normal channels for temporary entry into New Zealand or permanent residence they may do so under the clearly established procedures and criteria.

"There are real matters of principle involved here. There is one law for all in New Zealand which will be abided by," Mr Creech said.


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