Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Letter to PM on SIS Review


Letter to PM on SIS Review

The following letter has been sent to the Prime Minister by David Small and Leigh Cookson on behalf of 17 organisations calling for a full and independent judicial review of the operations of the SIS.

SIS Inquiry Petitioners Box 1905 Christchurch

Rt Hon Helen Clark The Prime Minister Parliament Buildings Wellington

26 November 2004

Dear Prime Minister,

We are writing on behalf of the undersigned Christchurch and national organisations to urge you to authorise a full independent judicial review of the operations of the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service.

The recent revelations about SIS surveillance of the Maori Party and Maori organisations are consistent with a long and disturbing list of incidents involving the SIS that give the distinct impression that the Service is working to a political agenda that is inconsistent with its statutory obligations and unacceptable to the vast majority of New Zealanders.

These incidents include operations targeting the anti-Apartheid movement around the time of the 1981 Springbok tour, activities at the time of the 1996 APEC Trade Ministers’ meeting in Christchurch which the courts ruled to be illegal, and a host of actions in relation to Ahmed Zaoui such as the clandestine recording of interviews, alleged loss of the tapes of those interviews, the preposterous interpretations of Mr Zaoui’s holiday videos, and the presentation of patently unreliable sources of information to the Refugee Status Appeals Authority.

Given the role and widespread powers of agencies like the SIS, it is crucial that they are subject to rigorous control and oversight. This has become even more pressing in light of the powers and resourcing of the SIS being increased in the wake of the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001.

Submitters to the Select Committees processing this legislation have consistently expressed concerns about legitimate political activity being subject to SIS attention, and have been given constant assurances that this would not happen. But the evidence available to the public indicates that the SIS is continuing to monitor legitimate activities of New Zealanders.

We believe that nothing short of a full independent judicial inquiry into the SIS is acceptable. To restore public credibility, the inquiry cannot be conducted by the established oversight mechanisms.

It cannot be conducted by the Intelligence and Security Committee because much of the SIS’s apparently unacceptable activity has occurred under the watch of that committee. And, irrespective of the standing of the current Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, that office has proved completely ineffectual in fulfilling its statutory purpose of providing the New Zealand public with a means of holding the SIS accountable for its actions.

We trust you recognise the gravity of the issues at stake in this matter, and expect you will see the wisdom in our call for a public inquiry.

Yours sincerely,

David Small Leigh Cookson

On behalf of the following groups:

ABC - Anti-Bases Coalition

ARENA - Action, Research & Education Network of Aotearoa

The Association of University Staff

CAFCA - Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa

The Canterbury Council for Civil Liberties

CCANZ - Decade to Overcome Violence (DOV)

The Christchurch College of Education Students' Association

Christian World Service

GATT Watchdog

New Zealand Nuclear Free Peacemaking Association

New Zealand University Students’ Association

The Peace Foundation

Peace Movement Aotearoa

Quaker Peace and Service

Southern Regional Secretary, Service and Food Workers Union

Student Christian Movement

The Peace Foundation Disarmament and Security Centre


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Perils Of Declaring Premature Victory


Sure enough, Saturday’s Vaxathon was a barrel of fun and a throwback not merely to the Telethons of the past. It also revived memories of those distant days of early 2020, when we were all carefully wiping down our groceries, not touching our faces, washing our hands for 20 seconds and responding to level four lockdowns by putting teddy bears in the window for the benefit of the little kids walking by in their family bubbles. Those were the days, when the Team of Five Million felt like a real, organic thing... More>>

RNZ: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announces Cabinet decision on Covid-19 alert levels


Northland will move to level 2 at 11.59pm on 19 October. Waikato will be held at level 3, to be reviewed on Friday. Auckland will remain in level 3 with current restrictions for another two weeks... More>>

ALSO:




 
 

Economy: Inflation highest in over a decade
The consumers price index rose 2.2 percent in the September 2021 quarter, the biggest quarterly movement since a 2.3 percent rise in the December 2010 quarter, Stats NZ said today. Excluding quarters impacted by increases to GST rates, the September quarter movement was the highest since the June 1987 quarter... More>>

ALSO:


Government: New Zealand Increases Climate Aid Contribution

The Government is making a four-fold increase in the support it provides to countries most vulnerable to the climate emergency, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Climate Change Minister James Shaw announced today... More>>

Government: Opportunity To Shape NZ’s First Emissions Reduction Plan
The Government is inviting New Zealanders to inform the country’s first Emissions Reduction Plan with the release of a consultation document containing a range of policy ideas to decrease the country’s emissions, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Climate Change Minister James Shaw announced today... More>>

ALSO:


CPay Cheque To Pay Cheque: Half A Million New Zealanders Have No Savings
New findings from the Consumer NZ sentiment tracker found that 15% of New Zealanders had no savings, and a further 27% were anxious about their level of savings and would like to have more tucked away... More>>


Government: Mandatory Vaccination For Two Workforces

Large parts of two workforces critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19 will be required to be vaccinated, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Our education and health and disability workforces have done an incredible job throughout this pandemic to keep themselves and people safe,” Chris Hipkins said.... More>>


Green Party: Deeply Concerned Space Launches May Be Breaching Nuclear-free Laws

The Green Party is deeply concerned that space launches by Rocket Lab may be breaching nuclear-free laws, given our long-standing position as a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty... More>>


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels