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Dr Muriel Newman

Electoral Apartheid by Decree

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parliament280916American philosopher Robert Maynard Hutchins once said, “The death of democracy is not likely to be an assassination from ambush. It will be a slow extinction from apathy, indifference, and under-nourishment.”

He probably could not conceive of a situation where a government was itself imposing apartheid on a democracy.

Unfortunately that’s what’s happening in New Zealand right now in the form of legislation being introduced by National. It had gone under the radar of public awareness, until Winston Peters raised the issue in Parliament last week in a very public manner.

The controversy took place when New Zealand First announced that the party could no longer support two of five Treaty of Waitangi settlement bills that had been scheduled to be passed during a special sitting of Parliament last Friday. This caused a problem for the Government because they had given leave to many of their MPs, on the understanding that all parties were in support of the bills, and that no party vote would be called. Rather than cancel the leave and disrupt the plans of their MPs, National cancelled the sitting.

This issue goes back to 2011, when Parliament changed its Standing Orders to allow the House to extend its sitting hours without going into urgency, in order to accommodate the large number of Treaty settlement bills that were in the pipeline.

During such extended sittings, if all Parliamentary parties plan to support the Bills unanimously, then not all Members of Parliament need to be present. However, if a party plans to oppose a bill, then a party vote would be called and the Government would need to have at least 75 percent of their MPs in the Parliamentary precinct, so that, by including proxies, they could vote at full strength. With National clearly unable to muster sufficient MPs, the special sitting was cancelled.

New Zealand First was accused of pulling an “appalling” stunt to disrupt the Government and cause chaos, since it turned out that some 400 tribal members had made arrangement to attend Parliament to see the bills being passed. The Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson, was quick to unilaterally assure those who stood to lose money through this disruption to travel plans, that taxpayers would pick up the bill.

So what were New Zealand First’s concerns with the bills?

According to party leader Winston Peters, the Taranaki Iwi Claims Settlement Bill was introducing “electoral apartheid” by forcing the Regional Council to appoint unelected tribal representatives with voting rights onto their committees.

The Taranaki bill is in a standard Treaty claims settlement bill format. When Parliament passes such bills, it signals the end of a long process that often began years before with a claim to the Waitangi Tribunal, followed by lengthy negotiations with the Government over a Deed of Settlement setting out how the claims against the Crown will finally be resolved. The settlement bills usually include a Crown apology, along with cultural and commercial redress to ensure the iwi’s historical grievances are officially recognised, their relationship with the Crown is restored, and the taxpayers’ compensation to advance their economic aspirations is specified.

The apology clauses in such bills are often grovelling affairs that re-write history. Here is the text of the Clause 10 apology from the Taranaki Iwi Claims Settlement Bill:

“The text of the apology offered by the Crown to the tūpuna, to ngā uri o Taranaki Iwi, to the hapū and the whānau of Taranaki Iwi, as set out in the deed of settlement, is as follows:

(a)The Crown unreservedly apologises for its failure to honour its obligations to Taranaki Iwi under the Treaty of Waitangi, and for failing to give appropriate respect to the mana and rangatiratanga of Taranaki Iwi.

(b) The Crown deeply regrets its actions that led to the outbreak of war in Taranaki, and the lasting impact those wars have had on its relationship with Taranaki Iwi. The Crown unreservedly apologises for the many injustices carried out against Taranaki Iwi during those wars, including the shelling of settlements and the use of scorched earth tactics, and for the severe distress, hardship and death that those actions caused.

(c) The Crown is deeply sorry for the immense prejudice it caused by confiscating the land that had supported Taranaki Iwi for centuries. The raupatu was indiscriminate, unjust, and unconscionable. The Crown deeply regrets the serious damage that the raupatu and its subsequent actions with respect to your remaining lands has caused to the social structure, economy, welfare, and development of Taranaki Iwi. The Crown deeply regrets the actions it took to suspend the ordinary course of law and imprison Taranaki Iwi people without trial for participating in campaigns of non-violent resistance. The Crown sincerely apologises to those tūpuna who it imprisoned far from their homes for political reasons, to the whānau who grieved and struggled to survive in the absence of their loved ones, to their uri, and to Taranaki Iwi.

(d) The Crown unreservedly apologises to Taranaki Iwi, and to the Taranaki Iwi people of Parihaka past and present, for its unconscionable actions at Parihaka; for invading their settlement, for systematically dismantling their community, for destroying their ability to sustain themselves, and for assaulting their human rights. The Crown deeply regrets the immense and enduring harm that these actions caused to Parihaka and its people. Over several generations, the Crown’s breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi have undermined your leadership and your communities, your ability to exercise long-held rights and responsibilities, and your ability to maintain your cultural and spiritual heritage, your language, and your Taranakitanga.

(e) Through this settlement and this apology, the Crown hopes to ease the heavy burden of grievance and sorrow that Taranaki Iwi has carried for so many years, and to assist Taranaki Iwi in its pursuit of a better future. To this end, the Crown looks forward to building a relationship with Taranaki Iwi based on mutual trust, co-operation, and respect for the Treaty of Waitangi and its principles.”

In his article, Let’s all ‘apologise’ to one another for the alleged wrongs of our forebears, Professor Barend Vlaardingerbroek of the American University of Beirut takes issue with such practices, claiming that apologising for the wrongs of the past has become “a mandatory PC dictum, especially where the alleged wrong-doer is White and the self-proclaimed victim is Black or Brown. The expectation is that the former will prostrate himself before the latter in a fit of remorse and beg forgiveness, preferably alongside liberal offers of compensation.”

He makes the point that ethical and moral standards change, and that the ‘law of conquest’, that is as old as humankind, was not considered ‘wrong’ until historically very recently. That means that the view of governments in countries like New Zealand, that their ‘indigenous’ people must by definition have been morally wronged, “is based on a simplistic ideology riddled with double moral standards and propped up by a warped version of history”.

How right he is.

It was clauses 97 to 101 of the Taranaki bill that New Zealand First objected to.

In their press release, Mr Peters said, “New Zealanders should be very concerned about the Taranaki Iwi Claims Settlement Bill – it hands power to iwi by giving them six decision-making roles on a local authority without being elected. This law will force the Taranaki Regional Council to appoint six iwi members, three on the Policy and Planning committee, and three on the Regulatory Functions Committee. They will not be elected, but nominated by iwi, need not be subject to an iwi vote, and they will be paid for by the ratepayers. This is electoral apartheid.”

The Government is using the settlement bill to undermine the democratic rights of the people of the Taranaki Region. They are riding roughshod over local democracy by forcing the Regional Council to appoint six iwi representatives onto two of their key planning committees.

This will sway the balance of power, by giving this rich vested interest group an unlimited right to influence decision-making in their region – and since the appointments are through law, the council members cannot be held accountable by locals, nor voted out.

What’s worse is that this is a community that has been hammered by repeated attempts to have race-based representation imposed on it and has stated loud and clear via a referendum that it does not want local government based on race.

As this week’s NZCPR Guest Commentator, journalist and author Mike Butler, explains:

“In April 2015, New Plymouth residents voted 83 percent against a proposal for separate Maori seats on the New Plymouth District Council.

“New Plymouth mayor Andrew Judd lodged a complaint with the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues against the New Zealand government for permitting such a poll. He also urged Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell to present a petition to Parliament to set up Maori wards on every district council in New Zealand without requiring a public vote…”

Up and down the county communities are fighting against local government power being bestowed onto vested-interest tribal groups as political favours, rather than being won at the ballot box. Now the people of Taranaki are having their local democracy undermined by the might of central government.

You can see which council candidates oppose ‘electoral apartheid’ through the NZCPR Election Project Index HERE.

In response to Winston Peters’ objections, Government Ministers accused the party of playing politics since they had not raised their concerns earlier.

In fact, Parliamentary records show that New Zealand First voted in favour of the Taranaki claims bill and the ‘electoral apartheid’ clauses during its first reading debate, with New Zealand First’s MP Pita Paraone saying, “And then of course there is the local government participation redress, which allows for direct iwi representation on the Taranaki Regional Council’s two principal standing committees. I just want to make the comment at this time that, given that towards the end of the year, there will be the local body elections, I hope that the iwi will actually stand candidates to sit on the full council, and then they can determine the membership of other committees as well.”

If New Zealand First had voted against the Bill at that stage, it would have raised the alarm, and people could have put in opposing submissions. But by supporting the bill, the provisions slipped through.

Although NZ First has raised concerns about two of the five settlement bills that were scheduled to be passed last Friday, it turns out that two more also contain clauses to appoint Maori representatives onto Taranaki Regional Council committees with voting rights. If New Zealand First intends opposing the Taranaki bill because of its ‘apartheid’ clauses, then to be consistent, it should also oppose the Ngaruahine and the Te Atiawa Claims Settlement Bills as well, where the ‘apartheid’ clauses are 84 to 88 and 75 to 79 respectively.

In the first reading of the Ngaruahine bill, Pita Paraone said, “The bill provides that Ngaruahine may nominate members to the Taranaki Regional Council’s standing committee. On that particular issue I must say that I know that there are people out there who oppose this view. I have no problem with them having a different view.”

And in his first reading speech on the Te Atiawa bill, Mr Paraone did not raise the issue at all, even though other Members spoke in favour of Regional Council appointments during the debate.

All in all, while New Zealand First could have done more by raising their concerns over these bills earlier, they have nevertheless made a great contribution by highlighting for the nation how the government is trampling over local democracy through settlement legislation.

By giving power to vested interest tribal groups that have aspirations of supremacy – and ignoring the rights of communities to decide whether local democracy should be defined by race through a referendum process – the Government is doing the country a grave disservice.


Should the Government be over-riding the wishes of local communities by creating race based positions on local councils through the treaty settlement process?


*Poll comments are posted below.


*All NZCPR poll results can be seen in the Archive.

Click to view x 120


Hell, no. Colin
How pathetic that this should have to be asked let alone that it should ever happen. Thank you NZCPR, and Winston,,for questioning it. John
Absolutely not. It is the most anti-democratic process possible. If they persist, they do so at their own peril. Keep up your opposition intensely Winston. Craig
Always been my thoughts. Harvey
What utter rubbish — we are one country or we are not. If you are good enough then get on the local and other bodies by being democratically elected instead of any so called bull treaty obligation. The intended wishes are in fact racist in the extreme. Alan
Such actions can only increase divisiveness. Graham
This country of ours is heading down a very slippery slope to oblivium People of NZ need to wake up to Findlayson and the rest of the National Party. Neville
Positions on local councils should be voted by the ratepayers not appointed by very biased Maori representatives. This is democracy in action – dictation by a small group of people is absolutely unacceptable. Andrea
New Zealand lis not a democracy.l; It is a hypocrisy. Its Government is too PC – Politically Corrupt. Kevan
No, no, NO! I can’t believe New Zealand has come to this, that our government is willing to barter away our democracy for votes, and to do it in such an underhanded and irreversible way. It is deplorable. Joyce
The National Government is developing into one of the worst racial governments New Zealand has ever had. Eric
I do not trust Pita Paraone of NZF with the Maori affairs portfolio; he needed to alert the nation at the first reading of this bill. Great news that Don Brash has fronted a Hobson’s Pledge group. I hope this focuses on the terrible things this government is doing to our democracy. Monica
The ultimate aim of maori is joint joint sovereignty in this Nation . I have dealt with this group for a long time. My Father-in-law was invited to join way back in the in the 70s. With Ranginui Walker and otjhers. He rejected them said they were mad. He certainly would not say that now now. Inch by Inch. The country has no idea what is happening. They wont a dual government department for everyone we have now. Same with sport rep teams. Its all about money and two bites at the cherry for every maori. When will it stop. Dener
No, totally opposed this. Mark
This is the thin edge of the wedge for this country to turn into a shambles and race riots, thank goodness for Winston as national will never say no to any maori demand. Richard
Maori are not indigenous to NZ, Fact. The Treaty of Waitangi has fast become a joke and is used as way for the National party to get law or bills passed by the MMP. If maori want representation on any local council they get voted on like any other person seeking a place on their respective local council. Wayne
I am writing to Susan. Neil
When is this rail roading of common democracy going to stop!!!!!! Simon
Absolutely NOT. What an insult to those Maori who do put themselves forward for election to Council. Fiona
When will it ever end? National seems hell-bent on bending over to Maori and to hell with the rest of us. Democracy? Fail! Fraser
Elected Councillors cannot be trusted to manage the process. Garry
It is a disgrace… Donald
This is not democracy. So Maori lost the war. Should the Britons be compensated because the Normans defeated them. Barry
Get rid of the treaty it will create a major issue for the future for all New Zealanders. Peter
Considering changing my life time support habit and giving Winston a vote just on my concern about the National drift under Key/ Finlayson toward apartheid New Zealand. I predicted that the demise of First past the post and introduction of a proportional electoral system would create this outcome. Irvine
This is sad time for New Zealanders when our wishes are being over-riden by a govt that is meant to be working for ALL the people who live in this country; not just a selected group. Erica
ALL council members should be voted in, not placed because they belong to maori. Carolyn
No way! Never! Steve
Absolutely Not !! And John Key is getting perilously close to losing my vote unless he starts to get on top of such blatant “apartheid” matters and stops them in their tracks – now. Doug
The Government needs to remember that you cannot judge “then” by “now”. Ann
Any Government is the servant of the people, and should not forget that. The majority of the population (not just the ones that shout the loudest) want equity for all, not just for Maori. Sheila
No! Another step towards racial diversity. Mary
Overbearing, inconsiderate of the common people and bullish tatics that have no place in our Democracy. Steve
A disgrace. Tom
One more step in the destruction of the democratic process by the appointment to electoral bodies of unelected members. Douglas
Absolutely NOT, as this undermines my understanding of my own political freedom and the basis of DEMOCRACY. James
Yet another example of the Maori minority wanting to laude it over the rest of the population on a race based undemocratic process. Its about time NZ Government grew some balls & tell Maori in no uncertain terms that there is no such thing as a free lunch & if they want to be put into a position of authority they need to earn it by being democratically voted in! David
Its aparteid and not welcome in New Zealand. Doreen
I thought that this race based nonsense was off the agenda. Jeff
Change the government. Richard&Wendy
I cannot BELIEVE what this NATIONAL government is doing – riding roughshod over democracy and seemingly wanting to ensure that the people cannot reverse this dreadful legislation. Sylvia
This Govt is getting sicker and very racially biased trying to create a race preference, divided country with more diversity and very poor administration. IAN
Why does the present Government favour discrimination on a racial basis, and ignore the true basis of democracy? Perhaps we should all get behind Donald Brash and look at Hobson as a very capable and intelligent person .Bravo. Who are the true racists in our wonderful country. Answer is surely the assorted tribes found on the shores eating each other when Hobson Arrived!!! John
What is happening to this current Government they are hell bent on creating a racist divide being Maori and the rest of New Zealanders Don Brash and Winston will be the king makers next election. Ken
Absolutely not. Very sad what National is doing, then what’s the alternative? Labour/Socialisim. Frypan into the fire! Graeme
I’m becoming seriously concerned that the greatest legacy of Key’s prime ministership will be leading New Zealand into a devastating civil war! Steve
I used to think nothing could be worse than Palmer’s self-serving fawning but this is so much more destructive. Shame National, shame. Geoffrey
No more race based laws, one New Zealand, for all equally. Colin
Stop it right now. This underhand racial bribery to a “race group” that has no definition is anti-democratic and corrupt. John
Whats this country coming to !!! Mark
Absolutely NOT!! I’ve been getting very worried about the actions of this National Government. They don’t listen to the people and are now practicing apartheid which is special treatment based on race. We should all be treated equally under the law and everything to do with race should be ceased immediately. Any special treatment should be based on need only. People might like to check out the new Hobson’s Pledge on Facebook and support it to the hilt if they want to put an end to racist divisions being encouraged by the current Government. Helen
We must pursue the “abolition” of Central Governments, Race Based Seats. Not add more seats via Local Authorities. Brian
Not good enough in OUR democracy. Robert
There is now no option since the Key Government signed the Declaration on Indigenous Rights, The National Party now demands that the Taranaki Regional Council MUST allow unelected Maori Representatives onto Council Committees. This legislation delayed by NZ First (not it seems supported by any other Political Party in our Parliament) will be past eventually, and consequently, we will see Maori APPOINTED not only to all Committees in Local Government, but also a free passage onto all Councils. %u201CA first and very insidious but significant step, in reducing our democratic system of the basic right for people to vote into power their representatives. What will evolve slowly but surely, will be a total acceptance of an Electoral Appointment System in both Local and Central Government; made all the more acceptable to an apathetic populous with the present MMP system that we already have. (Where nearly half our members of the House of Representatives are non elected List M.P.s answerable only to their party). The result will be damage beyond repair to an already failing democracy. What will emerge will be a 50% Maori Iwi appointed sovereignty representation in our Parliament combined with the Leftist Green Party which will have a permanent majority with the remains of the other parties merely ‘to coin a phrase from the 16th Century’ forming a RUMP PARLIAMENT (but without regretfully a Cromwell to insist that ‘You have sat too long begone’! How long are we going to continue to surrender our country into the hands of a virulent minority obsessed with notions of a cultural grandeur, far removed from the actual reality of their primeval past, and from our leaders who are all too willing to sell out this country out on the altar of the United Nations.? Brian
Really dangerous. Lloyd
Definitely not. Ron
Why stop at local councils next they will demand un elected members in parliament. David
DEFINETILY NO!! We have arrived at a point where these Tribal elitists throw in more and more demands into these more than questionable claims. And these Crown’apologies”are are– in my view– a grotesk form of political correctness where we are more or less collectively forced to apologize(AND PAY) for the alleged wrongdoings of people in charge more than 150 years ago.Worst of all— at every turn Apartheid in NZ becomes more and more entrenched.The general NZ public are kept in the dark and are lulled into a false sense of security .The media report all matters in regards to TOW affairs in a most superficial and utterly uncritical fashion. A clear indicator that we have reached a point very close to no return. It looks like NZ First will turn out to be our last hope to create some sort of political barrier against the evil forces of Apartheid. Michael
This is so wrong. Wake up National Party before it is to late. Dave
The most dangerous man in this country undermining private property rights is Sir Geoffrey Palmer. He is enabling the nationalisation of New Zealand through tribalism and socialism – it was always his long-held intention. Don
The way that Key and his slimy offsider Finlayson are pandering to the demands of the Maori is enough to make you spew. Obviously this arse licking has been going on for a long time and it makes you wonder if we are banging our heads against a brick wall by even talking about it. Nothing seems to change for the better.If you are a caucasian then stand by to become a second class citizen. Ralph
The government is scare of the haka. George
What a cheek to think they can get away with passing this type of law. I am not fond of Winston but he is at least making a stand on an issue that should never have got this far. Tim
He who does not know their own history is but a baby in the arms of a politician. And this is why politicians push doctored Treaty Principles. The treaty was ratified by extending the borders of New South Wales (NSW) to encompass “all of the islands of New Zealand” and this action caused Maoris to become immediate British citizens with the “same rights” as all other British citizens NZ was created a separate British colony by our true founding document, Queen Victoria’s Royal Chartrer of 16-11-1840 which gave us our first constitution, English law only and authorised Hobson’s promotion to be our Governor. George
Democracy – one person one vote. Stop patronising Maori. It’s racist to insinuate Maori are incapable of standing and winning positions based on merit. HENRY
This is one country and no group should have priority over another. Council members must be elected by the people in an open vote. Tom
Good riddance. John
No definatly not, the government cronies and all normal people should take a gander at the littlewood treaty on line where all is correct without any fraudsters culture rubbish. The stooge running the faulse treaty claims is in the game for gain, so be sure to read the littlewood treaty on line James
No way should this be contemplated by our elected representatives. If the current government goes in this direction they will be committing political suicide for National My family & friends I have spoken to agree. Brian
Maori Privilege to the so called elite. David
National & its Helen loving leader should be discarded completely at the next election. Unfortunately there is no right wing alternative, with Winston playing politics to to gain a bit of traction now & again. He has to his credit however, always preached one law for all. Biggest disappointment so far, has been the absolute silence from the ACT Party. Has Seymour become no more than a National Party Puppet? A.G.R.
Around 1999 I discussed these issues with Muriel and a few others. I firmly believed that this mess was well underway at that time. Nobody wanted to believe that it could go anyway as far as it has gone. Now it is too late as too many people now have been brainwashed into believing in the guilt trip of the Treaty and the lie of Partnership. It is too late to fix this mess. Richard
Get rid of these racist treaty claims. This country is going backwards into racist chaos. Graeme
If New Zealand wants to be run by a bunch of greedy no hopper Maoris, then vote National next year, thanks NZ First you have my vote. Athol
Representation on Council should not be based on race and should only be those who are democratically elected by their community! I do not support anyone whatever race appointed on councils! June
I’m 5th generation Kiwi. My great-grand-children are 8th. Are they to become citizens with lesser rights than others of a slightly different heritage? I would sincerely hope not! Johnboy
The Government need to establish a language board and then redefine the word “democracy” and hope the non-privaledge majority of us are really as thick as they clearly think we are!! Most of us have had an education and understand what the word democracy means. Please stop abusing the language and being racist. Peter
I have voted National all my life (now 90 ) but I and all my family will not continue our loyalty if JK continues with this policy of undermining our Democracy. Albie
Nothing surprises me with this arrogant minister. The national government have totally lost the plot. Robin
Don’t they want to win the next election? John
We do not need or want race based decisions. Ross
Absolutely not. We should be one people under our flag!, by now, this is 2016 not in the past any more. Ian
And the gravy train keeps rollin along. Stevo
We are one people! That should say it all! Frank
It would breach the Treaty Of Waitangi which declares us to be ONE people. (and I wonder if the Taranaki Maori intend to pass a large part of any settlement to Moriori descendants -their preceding indigenous people – for the enslavement and genocide of the race in far worse circumstances than the Taranaki maori think they were hard done by). Alan
It’s not even near a Democratic Process. One People One Role. Richard
Once again the same old situation where the average New Zealand citzen has no say in the way they’re voices take a back seat v government decision. Over the last few years it has become the norm as we became second class citizens, and only options for the average New Zealanders is to pay up and shut up. When will people stand up to this disgraceful situation?. years Frank
We are still a democracy, I hope!!! Edward
What is wrong with this one eyed government causing racial division the sooner I am in the ground the better but I feel sorry for my children and grandchildren. The past is the past and should not be held to change the future. David
Madness. John
If National are determined to do this, and Labour likely to do likewise, then at the General Election our ONLY option is to vote for NZ First. Although late with their opposition, they at least recognize the danger in such legislation. Kill the Bill. Vic
What happened to ‘He iwi kotahi tatau, tatau? Mike
This proposal is totally unacceptable. Only elected individuals should sit on the board. The so-called Maori reps. should stand in the elections and survive or not at the behest of all in the region irrespective of colour, class or creed. John
Is this democracy? Barry
Democracy isn’t served by allowing ‘appointed’ part-Maori to sit in such large numbers on local councils. JOHN
Totally undemocratic. Gary
Its like a Cancer – the spread of entitlement. The bad side of MMP the tail wagging the dog. Graeme
Winstone will get my vote next time! Mark
National voter never again. Dave
If National continue on this path, they will certainly be losing my support. Terry
To remain in power National is not being true to its followers. John
Why won’t they listen? John
I live in hope that this incredible weak arsed pandering to Maori hierarchy demands will bite the Nats in the arse at the next elections. Sadly the many decent Maori including some fine friends of ours probably feel they are being tared with the same brush. Not a fair go to them by their own hierarchy. Donald
Anyone can stand for election but MUST be voted in!!! Pam
Absolutely not. Alan
I see this move aiding and endorsing the giant leap towards global socialism being subtly manoeuvred vis-a-vis United Nations policies through John Key! Think Helen Clark & John Key’s relationship — more transparent recently. Stuart
More racist maneuverings from the most racist group in the country – the National Party. Mike
This Government needs to pack up and go they are not promoting a country of equal opportunity. Barry
The Government has no right to impose this sort of thing against overwhelming public opinion. Bryan
This is absolutely wrong, and National have lost my life time vote over this and other issues. Murray
The eventual breakdown of the EU dictatorship is happening because of the unelected rulers ignoring the rights of the democratic majority, a lesson for this government. Brian
Once again we witness the maoris pressing the govt for race based policies for their own un democratic gains and control. Supported by weak politicians. The preasent govt need to inform the maoris that this is a democratic country and race based policies have no place in NZ. It appears that Key will do anything to appease the maoris and their party to hold on to power. Beware Mr Key, of what you support. David
I am for democracy throughout. Doris
In a democracy? This is ridiculous. If this type of legislation goes through it is the death of democracy. Alan
Tired of continual race based nonsense that being foisted on NZ. Oh for some sense in this country as that espoused by the late Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, who died earlier this year,Anonin Scalia. For 30 years he based his decisions on basic’originalism’ whereby he said the late 16th century U.S. Constitution. Should mean in 2016 exactly what was written down at the time, and should not be altered with changing interpretations as happens with Treaty of Waitangi every week in NZ . Hylton
Should be subject to a binding referendum. Paul
Hell no. Sheena
No, no again no. David
This is racism. I don’t believe that is what NZ stands for. Robert
No, no. A thousand times no to any race-based appointments to local bodies, or to Parliament itself (it’s time also to vigorously root out the Maori seats as well). Rob
Why is this not debated on prime time television or a binding national referendum held for everyone to decide? Muriel for PM. Steve
The thin edge to the loss of freedom and democracy. Rob
They should not but they will. What choice do we have. Winston is the only one who does talk some sence. If you are not legally elected shut your cake hole. Don’t jump on the maory tribal hotspot. Try to be a New Zealand person. If you cannot hop into your canoe and drift away. Johan
I live in Taranaki and voted against this in the referendum. Darron
Gradualism, deprivation of the people’s rights by stealth! National and their racist friends are using three of the four classical fascist methods to bring this unwelcome change – the only one they haven’t had to use is the Army! Paul
Men fought over seas to give us all a democratic right to vote and if we are any in our council Regions we stand to be voted in. Not to be given free seats through some Treaty Bill that is out of date for 2016. This Government will fall and were is democracy. This show more Government control telling the people what they are going to have. Put the Treaty to sleep and we stand as one people from all back grounds. Robert
Why don’t the pollys just try to do their own job and keep out of local affairs. Jim
The government is clearly trying to get Maori votes by giving in to them. But this is a disaster for our country. Theodorus
For goodness sake it is time all this nonsense stopped and this small country of ours got on with the business of caring for all its people on an equal basis and stopping all this Racial nonsense that just keeps the whole divided races issue going. Life is too short we are all New Zealanders if not by birth at least by becoming citizens and those who aren’t shouldn’t have a say in the matter. Laurel
NO government nor any elected Party nor the office of PM has any mandate to undermine the electoral process by allowing any form of unelected representation having authority over the ratepayers or voters. Findlayson is guilty of inaction to stop this process and PM Key is guilty of failing to lead his government to stop this process irrefutably and send a clear signal of One Law for all Citizens. No Party is deserving of governing especially with the Party Vote where they uphold or permit by default any erosion in the One Law for all citizens in this elected democracy. Time to dispatch the evil apartheid treaty as the top priority of any governing Party going forward. Seems only Don Brash has the real courage to lead in truth. Richard
Absolutely not! Time to boot the Treaty into the dustbin of history where it belongs. (along with any proposed Constitution that is drafted by the likes of Geoffrey Palmer and his ilk) How much more NZ taxpayers’ money is going to be thrown at these brown parasites for some nebulous, supposed, grievances that occurred six generations ago? (Along with much ritual grovelling of course!) Sorry National, but you and your illustrious Treaty Negotiations minister have really dropped the ball on this one! Scott
NO~ NO~ NO ~ that’s why I have now joined NZ FIRST to protest! John Key is going the way of Muldoon ~ we are moving away from being a Democracy to Dictator John……. David
This is going to turn NZ into the butt of banana republic jokes – world wide. In reality it will turn NZ into a banana republic destroying the foundation of democracy it rests on while promoting race conflict and turning white NZ’rs 2nd class citizens. It will divide the country and drive our best and brightest offshore. Thankfully it will deprive the current government of a 4th term. How dare they treat white NZ’rs this way – as if two wrongs make a right. Derek
I am 80 years old I have voted National All my life, have been on a MP’ s Re election committee. I will not continue to support them until they support 1 man 1 vote. Bruce
Definitely not. They are undermining the basic principles of political correctness that demand first preference on local councils be given to candidates who are gender neutral, anti-democracy advocates wearing green- tinted glasses. Mitch
Don’t divide our nation, unify it! From our anthem: “Men of every creed and race, Gather here before Thy face, Asking Thee to bless this place” Neil
NZ does not have a true democracy. Powerful politicians led by Chris Finlayson (only a list member) and John Key have destroyed the communities confidence in Central government and Local Government. Citizens are powerless because they do not have free speech due to the Race Relations Conciliator threatening newspaper Editors throughout NZ about what they can and what they can’t print. Absolute tyranny.. Maureen
Definitely not. Lynnette
No way! Racism at its very worst. Kabe
National is selling off New Zealands democracy – who’s getting the backhanders? John
National won’t be getting my vote in the next election. Paul
The idea is disgusting. IAN
The National party is bad news for race relations in NZ and I will never vote for them again. Jill
Is there ever going to be an end to all this Maori rubbish that just goes on and on when is the Govt going to say enough is enough. Russell
Race should not be considered. All members should be elected by the people council represents. Lois
Absolutely not, this action is blatantly anti-democratic; and makes a mockery of everything this country has stood for in the past which is good. Democracy is something ALL our ancestors fought hard for, and our government is throwing it away with both hands. Very very angry. Michelle
Those greedy should never be be allowed any where near any council table. They are only to make as much money as they can for their elite as everything will have a price for their agreement. Colin
I am fed up with the way that National is chipping away at democracy by stealth. Kerry
Too much like govt rolling over and showing it’s beljy to be scratched by laughing all the way to the bank ( and beyond ) iwi who suddenly find areas of pakeha land tapu and full of taonga. … not to mention middens! Get real and stop the undermining of democracy! Mel
If national passes this bill I will never vote for them again – EVER!!! Bruce
We are creating apartheid by pandering to a minority who already have equal rights in New Zealand. We are one people in a democracy were our representatives must stand for election on their merits not on a fee ride into the decision making process. Thomas
It is wrong, it will always be wrong. Ken
It is utterly undemocratic. Richard
The National Government have got to be made to run Government by democratic means only. If they choose to appoint Council members rather than elect them, then we have GOT to kick them out of office at the next election. Ernest
This will lead to the destruction of our society as we know it. It must be stopped. Toby
Definitely NOT! What appallingly short-sighted, self serving and undemocratic behaviour on the part of the National government. In pursuit of the retention of power at any price, National appears to be prepared to press on with its insane agenda and permanently damage race relations in New Zealand to the point where there may be no turning back. At this juncture, it would seem that the only impediment to this relentless march towards apartheid is Winston Peters and New Zealand First. A long time National supporter until 2011, nothing would please me more than to see a major shift in the balance of power following the forthcoming General Election. Martin
We don’t need it as it is only being used to promote a separatist agenda. Maurice
Quite honestly it stinks. Ray
John Key and his Govt. continue to support Arpatheid on NZ & should be voted out. Their support and connection with a race based party is untenable. Peter
Definitely NOT! What appallingly short-sighted, self serving and undemocratic behaviour on the part of the National government. In pursuit of the retention of power at any price, National appears to be prepared to press on with its insane agenda and permanently damage race relations in New Zealand to the point where there may be no turning back. At this juncture, it would seem that the only impediment to this relentless march towards apartheid is Winston Peters and New Zealand First. A long time National supporter until 2011, nothing would please me more than to see a major shift in the balance of power following the forthcoming General Election. Martin
We don’t need it as it is only being used to promote a separitist agenda Maurice
quite honestly it stinks ray
John Key and his Govt. continue to support Arpatheid on NZ & should be voted out. Their support and connection with a race based party is untenable Peter
I put a similar question to my local MP and received the following reply. Iwi representation on two Taranaki Regional Council Standing Committees (Policy and Planning Committee and Consents and Regulatory Committee) was specifically agreed to between the Crown and Ngaruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki Iwi in their Deeds of Settlement. A lengthy and collaborative process was undertaken to develop and formalise a document that sets out the nomination and appointment process for iwi representatives. This document was endorsed by the Regional Council, the eight iwi of Taranaki and the Crown in June this year. Of the 12 current Policy and Planning Committee members, four have been appointed from external bodies. Three of these are from each of the region’s District Councils, and the other external appointment is from Federated Farmers, which in effect is an unelected member. There are no provisions in this settlement legislation about iwi representation on the Taranaki Regional Council itself or about Maori wards. Martin
This situation has to be put to the general voting public so that they aware of this back door manner by which the government and others are prepared to over-ride the principle of democracy by allowing unelected individuals the power to vote on council committees. Anthony
One Nation ? A
The Nats need to learn how to spell Democracy – then practice it. Goodbye Mt Key. Fred
This is just apartheid by decree – no different from the raial selection policies of the Springboks ordered by the Government of South Africa. andrew
It’s simply a method of creating apartheid and getting the people to think along apartheid lines. John
I’m sick of all this racist garbage created by some of the biggest racists around. One person, one vote, end of story! Graeme
If Maori or other nationality people want to be on ANY council – let them get off their butt, go drum-up support and be elected thru the correct channels – Elayne
Unless you are a fish, a bird or a reptile you are not indigenous to NZ, a land pushed up out of the ocean by shifting tectonic plates. NZ was never attached to a land mass for people to walk to. Maori are merely early boat people who will not allow true historic archeology on their sites. The mixed race 15% people hide in myth and folk lore and now seek to force their race into government as of right under some sort of rewritten version of what somebody meant to say at the signing of a Treaty many years ago, to save them from French colonisation Tom
What ever happened to democracy? Why are we the only country in the civilized world actively creating apartheid! Andy
Especially when one large section of the Taranaki community voted overwhelmingly against Maori appointments to the New Plymouth City Council. This is not democracy but dictatorial on the part of the Government. The Government is cutting it’s own throat. Rog
I cant believe that people are so taken in by the twisting of truth and history. do brash and winston peters need to be taken seriously .I wont vote for national next election anthony
Its the Maori problem coming up again and again Warren
A New Zealand apartheid by Maori. They want seperatism so let them have it and watch the fun. Phil
This agreement from the government is so demeaning and embarrasses me for ever supporting National. All I can say now is, never ever again! National has sold its soul to remain in power! Rayward
The National party is going against the wishes of the people. The next election will determine whether their decisions were in the interests of the people. Dennis
But what’s the point in trying to make this make legal and electoral sense? We’ve all been steamrollered underfoot yet again. Mabel
The govt. itself, would be racist if it did. John
Absolutely not. Stuart
Of course not, that is pure “racial” tripe! Gerard
We are slowly handing control of the country to unelected people. Andrew
What a pathetic wimpy Government we have. John Key and his cronies have lost the plot. Unfortunately the alternative possible Government, I fear, would be worse. Mike
The government are raising the expectations of Maori for unfettered and unconstitutional representation. The time may come when non-Maori will object vigorously with possibly violent results. Peter
Race based appointments have no place in democracy. If one wants to look at a true democracy then study the only democracy in the Middle East where people of various religions and racial backgrounds serve in the armed forces, parliament and education facilities such as universities and technical institutes. Kevin
This is apartheid. Owen
Racism Shonkey and Chris NGA Tahu Finlayson the unelected list MP with huge power. This is not democracy and kiwis with their apathy are on a slippery slope to apartheid. Greg
APARTHEID – pure and simple. Geoff
The National Party is heading full steam ahead into Apathy. Where to from there? Cleaning the mess up will be long, hard, and bloody. Bryan
If iwi want to get onto Local Body Committees, then they should be elected the same as anyone else. This Government is fast going down the slippery track towards institutional apartheid by including race-based appointments in Treaty settlements. NZ First is right to speak out about this, and act accordingly, but perhaps they should have made their concerns known earlier. Nice of our overly-generous Treaty settlements minister to say that the people who had travelled to Parliament to see their settlements being passed into law would be reimbursed – yeah right! Is another grovelling apology expected? Laurence
This is very dangerous ground. If we were to allow unelected white people to sit on councils and have a controlling say AND be paid for it at the expence of the rate payers, all hell would break lose. Mmmmm …. maybe thats what we need … settle this bullshit once and for all. Maori have been given special treatment for years and are given more and more … it never stops. Make them work like everybody else. NO MORE HANDOUTS TO MAORI !! Des
Absolutely not. I will not vote for a party in government who tries to establish such procedures. Neither will I vote for a party who tries to enforce amalgamation of local authorities into such as the Auckland model has become. Ron
Tired of this Trojan horse. Martin
At the rate this racist government is pushing us towards full blown apartheid, New Zealand has only a short time to try and dismantle such legislation. With the ACT party leader now starting to go down the appeasement path, New Zealand First is the only party which really appears to believe in one law for all. John
Not ever. Its happening far too much and I for one hate it. Kerin
Against all our principles. Monty
The government is the servant of the people but it has been gifting away our illusion of being one people as Kiwis. Is this not treason? What should happen to a government that takes a country from democracy to apartheid? Liz
Stop this Maori gravy train!!! Kevin
Just the first step towards abolishing local body elections – a precedent for local government by appointment. Alan
No,no,no.No vote, no seat and definitely no ratepayers money to pay them. Apartheid is alive and well in NZ. Peter
They are creating division. Colin
Democracy in this country is dead. Peter
Apparently National doesn’t believe in democracy but does embrace Apartheid. Allan
Of course this is pure racism and cannot be passed. Will this vote be viewed by government? Andrew
Never, only elected people should be on committees. Geoff
What nonsense this appointment business is. Cannot be allowed. Ian
Nationals days are numbered. Michael
Very undemocratic what this govt is attempting to do. I’m see a dark future for New Zealand if this stupidity is progressed and forced on communities that have clearly given their view on this. Neil
No way should there be raced based positions on any local council. The Treaty has passed its use by date. Frank
More treason – by our elected. Charge them. Ian
Time for National to go if they try to slip this racial bias like this through. Peter
Complete nonsense what planet are they on. Les
This a proposal of apartheid! One set of laws for Iwi and a separate set of laws for the rest of the NZ population. If this kind of logic is the basis of Governments policy then I shall be voting for NZ First! Gavin
NO NO NO! Trevor
Enough of this PC rubbish and greed. One nation one people equally. Alan
National was once the champion of democracy, but under John Key, National has betrayed its party and the voters who backed National. The question is why? Fred
Hell NO – what the heck ever happened to DEMOCRACY!!!! Maddi
In principal NO. But if there were any indigenous peoples in New Zealand then this suggestion should be put to electoral vote. Maori are not the indigenous people, they are the people remaining after they slaughtered the indigenous people. David
Definitely not! I am sick and tired of having arrogant politicians deciding that they know better than the people they are supposed to represent. Elizabeth
No to apartheid! Mark
When apartheid was kicked out of Sth Africa it found a new home in New Zealand. Kelvin
Can’t we all see the National Party is allowing the Maori Party to have Electoral Apartheid and undermine democratic rights we must have. Lance
There is a groundswell of discontent coming from Pakeha citizens. Helen
Definitely no ! Kevin
NO! Christopher
– – – but it has already happened in Supercity Auckland ! Michael
This is plain apartheid. Peter
What has happened to Democracy?? Racist politics and the Gravy train Rolls again. Peter
It’s crazy! Richard
This sort of corrupt politics has to end now! Jeffrey
Key & co areblatant racists Bruce
This is, frankly, unbelievable from a National government! Kevin
I have no idea what National is up to here, certainly not going for additional votes, the votes they are going to lose will significantly outnumber any they are likely to gain. John
National will lose support over this further departure from democracy. Peter
This is an appalling situation. People should withhold their vote from National if they go ahead with this sort of racist legislation. Kate
National have lost the plot. They have become apologists for the iwi elite. David
Good on New Zealand First for raising this issue. They should oppose all three of the Taranaki settlement bills. Brian
The government is trampling over local democracy. They should butt out. The people of New Plymouth have made their opinions on racial representation very clear through a referendum. If local tribes want to be on councils then they should stand and be elected like everyone else. Christopher
If National carries on like this, they will bleed support. Geoff