Northcote National Candidate No Show at Debate
Northcote National Candidate No Show at Televised Policies Debate
Northcote's National Candidate Daniel Bidois declined to take part in a televised debate recorded yesterday evening and will play tonight Tuesday 5 June at 6.30pm free on New Zealand Public Television (www.nzptv.org.nz), and on Face TV Channel 83 on Wednesday 6 June at 8:00pm.
The programme’s moderator, author and documentary maker Bryan Bruce, (who also happens to live in the electorate) said that while the Labour, Green and Democrats for Social Credit had all turned up for the lively debate Mr Bidois had declined to take part, not once, but twice.
“Mr Bidois was quick to decline our invitation, but when it became clear that all the other major candidates would be taking part I again contacted his campaign manager Clarke Hennessy and again received the reply ‘We’ll decline’.”
Bidois did not give a reason for not wanting to attend the televised debate but Bruce said he found it deeply ironic that “someone with a campaign slogan professing that he will be “the voice of Northcote” was unwilling to exercise his voice this evening to explain his policies and front up to the other candidates.”
Bruce has noticed what he says is a “disturbing a trend” for politicians to avoid being interviewed by the media when the questions might be searching or inconvenient.
“We ought not to accept "I decline to be interviewed" or “the minister was unavailable for comment” as a reason for politicians not to answer questions – especially at election time. Those responses are an affront to democracy and as journalists we need to call power to account, and not just shrug our shoulders and ignore the behaviour.”