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Dr Muriel Newman

Local Body Developments

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If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There’s no point in being a damn fool about it! … WC Field, American comedian

Hauraki Gulf

Not content with the failure of the Local Government Commission to merge councils in Northland, the Hawke’s Bay, and Wellington, National is now proposing to put their amalgamation agenda into effect via the back door, by using a new local government bill to increase the power of the Commission, while removing important democratic rights.

The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) is now in front of Parliament’s Local Government and Environment Select Committee and is open for submissions until Thursday 28 July – full details can be seen HERE.

The Bill’s preamble explains that it aims to lift local authority performance, as part of the Government’s overall objective of improving public services and building a more productive and competitive economy. It does this by streamlining the process for combining and co-ordinating services, infrastructure and resources across regions and towns, through a greater use of Council-Controlled Organisations (CCOs).

As the Local Government Minister Sam Lotu-Iiga explained in his first reading speech, “Communities in Northland, Hawke’s Bay, and Wellington have told us that they do not want full-scale amalgamation, but this bill provides a middle ground. Communities will retain their elected councils; the councils, in turn, will be able to work more collaboratively to manage infrastructure and services across our regions. This will deliver more joined-up, cost-effective services and better value for our ratepayers.”

So while the present legislation promotes council amalgamations as the way to gain the scale required to combine services, the new Bill facilitates the sharing of services between councils, without the need for amalgamation – unless it is agreed by all councils.

While under the present law only individuals, groups, councils, and the Minister can propose amalgamations, the Bill extends that power to the Local Government Commission. To balance that, the Bill includes an automatic poll of citizens over any Commission-led re-organisation proposal, including the transfer of water, transport, or Resource Management Act functions from one local authority to another.

However, there’s a catch. The Bill removes an important democratic safeguard, namely the automatic right of residents and ratepayers to petition councils for a binding poll on any amalgamation proposal – if supported by 10 percent of electors. As a result, under the new Bill, if a number of councils jointly agree on amalgamation, local citizens will have no right to call for a poll. This has already led to speculation that councils might be encouraged to collude in order to circumvent a public poll.

We strongly recommend that the ability of residents and ratepayers to petition their local authority for a poll on any amalgamation or reorganisation proposals should either be re-instated, or the provision for an automatic poll on Commission-led changes should be extended to cover all amalgamation and re-organisation proposals.

The point is that local ratepayers have a fundamental right to have a say in the structure of representative decision-making in their communities, since they are the ones who fund council infrastructure and assets.

There is also a concern that a central requirement in the current law, that there must be “demonstrable community support” for an amalgamation proposal to proceed, has been removed. Instead, the new Bill focuses on “the likelihood of significant community opposition to any reorganisation…”

In effect, this change in presumption from an amalgamation needing community support to proceed, to the lesser hurdle that it should go ahead, unless there is significant opposition, dramatically lowers the threshold.

We suggest that the old standard is the correct one – new local government re-organisation proposals should have to demonstrate that they have the support of their community in order to proceed.

When community support was used as a benchmark by the Commission in the last three amalgamation attempts, the results were conclusive: in Northland, 93 percent of submitters opposed a single council, in Wellington, 89 percent were opposed, and in the Hawke’s Bay, where a poll was held, 66 percent of voters were opposed.

In defence of the new Bill, the Local Government Minister explained, “The projected costs of maintaining and building core infrastructure such as water, sewerage, flood protection and roading are growing exponentially faster than the ability of local ratepayers to bear. The bill enables the development of shared infrastructure ownership and management across regions. This is essential for developing regions and communities”.

But this is also a key reason why communities should remain closely involved in the reform process – the creation of CCOs for the delivery of water and roading services, could remove a major part of the budget of many small councils, signalling their radical downsizing into largely regulatory agencies.

Further, since concerns remain that the Commission, on behalf of the Minister, could create CCOs, without the approval of the council or the community, it is imperative that community involvement and support remains a priority in the Bill – especially given the dreadful problems that are still evident in Auckland, where residents and ratepayers had amalgamation forced upon them.

Meanwhile, the Local Government Commission is wasting no time. Although their plans for Auckland-style super cities and Maori Statutory Boards in Northland, Wellington and the Hawke’s Bay were rejected, they are now informing councils that they intend to reconsider other restructuring options to promote greater efficiencies in the regions. They plan to progress their re-organisation proposals under the new law.

If you are concerned about the potential erosion of local democracy, and the failure of the proposed law to adequately safeguard public involvement in major council reorganisation decision-making, we would urge you to send in a quick submission on the Bill outlining your concerns by Thursday.

With local body elections just weeks away, local government reform is not the only thing being dumped on councils.

This week’s NZCPR Guest Commentator, Fiona Mackenzie, an Auckland-based political commentator, outlines how councillors in the region are having to battle against a power grab by tribal interests for control of the crucial Hauraki Gulf.

The Hauraki Gulf is a massive coastal area covering 1.2 million hectares from Mangawai in the North, to Waihi in the South, and Great Barrier Island in the East, encompassing Auckland, the Hauraki Plains and the Coromandel Peninsula. It includes the Ports of Auckland, shipping routes, marinas, fisheries, marine farms, and other commercial and recreational facilities.

At the present time, as Fiona explains, the area is controlled by the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park Act:

“Since 2000, the Gulf has been managed by the Hauraki Gulf Forum with Auckland Council as its administering authority. Its 21-member board includes Ministry bureaucrats, elected representatives of all the region’s councils, plus 6 self-nominated tribal representatives appointed by the Minister of Conservation.”

She outlines how, at their meeting last month, iwi tried to force through a re-organisation proposal for a new 16-member Board, constituted on the 50:50 Maori sovereignty co-governance model, whereby 8 members would represent Maori and 8 members would represent everyone else, giving tribes unassailable control of the Board and the Hauraki Gulf.

Under their scheme, the number of iwi representatives on the new Forum would be increased from 6 to 8. The number of councillors representing the vast Auckland region would be cut from 7 to 1. Representatives of the five other councils in the area – the Hauraki District Council, the Matamata-Piako District Council, the Thames-Coromandel District Council, the Waikato District Council, and the Waikato Regional Council – would be cut from 5 to 2. And the number of public servants representing the Minister of Maori Affairs, the Minister of Conservation, and the Minister of Fisheries, would be increased from 3 to 5.

All in all, only 3 of the 16 representatives on the proposed new governance body would be elected to represent the public interest and the almost 2 million people who live in the area.

Under the proposal the new iwi-controlled Board would demand statutory authority to enact legislation over the entire area.

Why, in a democracy based on equal rights and the rule of law, such a racist proposal could have progressed to the point where it is being seriously considered, is hard to fathom – although it’s not altogether surprising, given that the long-term agenda of Maori tribal leaders is to gain sufficient status and power to control the country’s major resources.

According to Fiona, “The meeting became rather acrimonious when some expressed concern at this attempt to shove the recommendations through. Understandably, they wished to have it reviewed by their respective organisations and obtain a mandate before voting. The inevitable claims of ‘racism’ were made.”

She is concerned that those in positions of power on the Auckland Council, who support the sovereignty cause, might manipulate the process so the proposal may not be decisively defeated, as it should be: “At the time of writing, the Forum’s Auckland City Councillors did not yet know if this Report would be reviewed and voted on by their Council’s governing body. There’s a chance it could be directed to a sub-committee for an easier passage from carefully selected participants, plus the two votes from the unelected, unaccountable and totally conflicted members of the Independent Maori Statutory Board.”

It is clear that the group wanting control of the Gulf were pushing Forum members to approve their new governance model on the spot, ahead of the local body elections, as they clearly believe they have the numbers to get their proposal through and do not want to risk having their compliant representatives replaced by others who might oppose their plan.

If they succeed in gaining support for their 50:50 Maori sovereignty-style co-governance proposal, the next step in their march for tribal control of the Hauraki Gulf, will be to seek the approval of the Government for a change to the Act. With the National Party’s history of caving in to iwi demands, whether they would stand up against this blatant power grab is anyone’s guess.

This whole debacle shows only too clearly how important it is that our local body representatives are prepared to act on principle and stand up for the public interest against radicals.  With council nominations now open (they close August 12), we should be encouraging those who are deeply concerned about the direction of local democracy and are prepared to take a stand against powerful vested interests, to put their names forward for election.

By offering themselves for office, candidates are pledging to work in the best interests of their community. That means opposing anyone threatening the principle of one person one vote.

With an on-going campaign underway to pressure councillors to support the appointment of un-elected iwi representatives with voting rights onto local authorities, it is important that potential candidates are well prepared. Standing up to iwi and their supporters is not always easy, so we suggest the following questions should be asked:

  1. If you are elected would you oppose iwi representatives being appointed onto your Council with voting rights?
  2. If you are elected and a proposal to appoint iwi representatives with voting rights onto your Council wins majority support, would you propose that the final decision should be made by local electors through a public referendum process?
  3. If your Council has already established iwi representatives with voting rights, will you move that the positions be disestablished so they can be reconsidered by the new council?

If you send email responses from candidates to us, we will add the details to our website HERE – as a public service in the run up to the elections.

New Zealand needs strong local government politicians. But be warned – as Fiona’s article indicates only too clearly, you need to be prepared to stick to your principles and not cave in to bullying or intimidation. Most of all you must never forget that you are there to represent the best interests of your community – and those who voted you into office.


Do you support the tribal co-governance of the Hauraki Gulf?

Vote x 120

*Poll comments are posted below.


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

Click to view x 120


Just another racist takeover bid. Barrie
Time to end this racist division. Peter
Outrageous racist presumption of entitlement. Kevin
Absolutely not. This isn’t what the treaty was about. New Zealanders took to the streets and protested against apartheid in South Africa and yet the exact same situation is being allowed to grow here in NZ. WTF! Kynan
These people with political agendas, never give up, do they? So it is NO – NO – NO. A thousand times NO. Gary
No, another example of takeover by stealth. Kevin
Maybe the local tribe should be supporting their under privileged people instead of trying to blackmail the local council into yet another handout for Maori at the expense of everyone else. Peter
NO _ NO _ NO ABSOLUTELY NO Racial maori land grab politics have absolutely No place in administering our harbour and shores. Unelected members (especialy racist maori representative members) need to be legally challenged and abolished, before bloodshed arises. The presiding National Govt need to be tasked with responsibility for not abolishing this ongoing virus on our democracy and failure to secure this apartheid travesty from ever happening again. The 86% of non maori voters need to stand up and repel this unconstitutional nonsense. National have no right to return to Govt if thisis not done this term. Richard
Absolutely NOT! That would be the thin end of the wedge. Alan
Feckin AVARICIOUS, RACIST MOARI can just piss off. Mark
Another racist effort by Maori. Rodney
It depends on how one views the actual definition of what is Co-governance! As we are ‘one’ people, same laws, same government etc., there seems little point to this phrase. It is as we all know; simply a method of gaining control over the Gulf…followed by others areas enabling Maori to control and the rest of us. Two issues stand out, one is this continual thrust to eliminate voting as a method of electing people to Committees, Local Councils etc., and to put into place the cheaper and totally undemocratic appointments scheme that will ensure representation is defined as our bureaucrats require. The second is that the people of this country will have to recognise that the United Nations Indigenous Rights Act is adhered to in law; and that it overrules any non indigenous person idea that we are all equal. So these two issues conflict with each other. But the basic fact is that ALL NON MAORI SINCE THE SIGNING OF THE U.N.INDIGENOUS RIGHTS ACT ARE IN EFFECT SECOND CLASS CITIZENS. Until we elect politicians who will stand up to this U.N. dictatorship, and have the courage to withdraw New Zealand from this Act; more and more Gulf incidents will become just another Maori excuse to dominate. As Mr Key is still supporting Helen Clark it would be suicidal to attempt such a bold legal attempt as a withdrawal at present. For as we all know, Ms Clark is a firm believer in World Government and New Zealand needs another ‘first among equals’! The other much more important issue is ‘Have the people of Auckland the stomach to resist this attempt to seize their Gulf’. We in the rest of New Zealand, await the final result with considerable interest. Brian
John Key and National need a kick up the backside allowing this co-governance and pro-separatist rackets to proceed. Seems like he is more concerned about catching rats now. What about the RATS in the Maori party? Monica
Definitely no. This relentless action by Maori is totally sickening. Once again this country is blighted by useless politicians both local and national. Mike
another land grab by greedy maori john
People or Parties wanting to stand for any local Govt should be voted in first past the post. Maori have enough representation in politics as it is. I do not trust the Maori as they are there only to represent themselves and it is always the fat kaumatuas that are all around the gravy trough lining their own pockets. Wayne
No no no never, THE treaty of waitangiwai did not say they could. James
N.Z. belongs to all of us. Richard
The Country is becoming plain ridiculous and going to the dogs in a big way!!!!!! Alan
Government, local & Parliamentary should be the only organisations able to control, look after & maintain such public areas. This proposal is ethnic control by stealth. Nick
An absolutely outrageous grab for power. Don
I do not live in the Auckland area, but if this happens there then it follows it will happen everywhere in nz. Phil
Tribal domination never. Barry
I certainly do not support co-governance of any type. This is just another try on that the Govt will cave in to, and maori will already be planning their next move. All paid for by the hard pressed tax payer of course. Stevo
How have things in this country become so bad in relation to allowing Maoris to demand and be given everything and more than they ever had or even knew existed. They have not progressed from being the savages that they were 200 years ago and in many ways have become worse. They cant even look after their children and keep them safe. The government needs to grow some balls and prevent them from getting ANYTHING else that they will eventually plunder and ultimately destroy. Des
Not under any circumstances. Steve
This is another move to eventually have co governance of all of New Zealand by these radical groups. Digby
As Catherine Tate would say “What a fucken Liberty. This must be fought against vigorously. Ralph
Yet again those elected to represent ALL people appear to lack the intestinal fortitude and intelligence to do the job they are paid to do. They are far too willing to turn a blind eye to minority interests (in this case Maori) pushing their own agendas to the detriment of the silent majority. It is time this ended. Gary
No, no, no !!! James
No way, Please NZCPR Would you please in your next newsletter give us the names of all the present Auckland councilors. Athol
Racialism needs to be removed from government processes. Michael
More proposed race-based lunacy!! Tony
You have to ask the question…….how can National let this situation arise……..what is their agenda? Ronmac
The Maori Apartheid Movement is alive and well unfortunately but I think that most Maoris don’t belong to it. My Maori relatives don’t seem to. K
Vehemently NO. Gordon
Maori neither have the ability or honesty to be in control of anything. They can not even take control of themselves. Roger
Definitely not. Winifred
No – because we are ALL ONE PEOPLE!!!!! Maddi
So maori who make up only 15% of citizens want 50% of the hauraki gulf governance authority. that’s discrimination against the 85% of non maori and noncompliance with the Bill of Rights . David
I’m against all racist policies. I want to see the corrupt treaty tribnual investigated for the settlement of fraudulent claims. There are several people ready to come forward and testify that the treaty tribunal is corrupt. Time to return to equal rights for all. Time for a new political party that stands up for its nation like Donald Trump has done for America. Time for a politician who is prepared to tell it like it really is. Eddoe
The Sodomising of democracy in this country has to stop NOW. Steve
We are a democratic country governed by its people through its elected members of its community who are our spokes people and take note and deliver what we want! Theodorus
This is a complete breach of democratic rights and I totally reject it. Dene
Co-governance, sovereignty really?? But of course the Treaty has been rewritten as has the history of New Zealand. Not the country my ancestors came to in 1840. Carol
I am heartily sick of the never ending drive towards co-governance, special consideration based on race, and moves to remove the democratic rights from citizens. Who is speaking for and representing an electorate in which all persons have equal and common rights? Michael
The Maori tribal elite should have no claims to land or sea. They base their claims on false statistics and events which are published for them by academics writing a false history of New Zealand. The Treaty said that we are all equal and part of a democracy. Let us keep it that way. Ernest
Absolutly not. You can just watch Ngai Tahu move quickly to have a disproportionate say in allthing South Island. There were only 2000 ngai tahu around 1840 /1850 and nearly all of those were living on dirt floors. Even now very few of them pay rates and those that may do are heavily subsidised by government, council hand outs. Brian
Another backdoor approach by Maori to ‘grab and force’ what they are not entitled to. Why can’t National see through their ploy and stop this repeated underhand nonsense ? Robyn
More Racism Disgusting this is not democracy. Greg
The governance of the Gulf should be by vote from the public – whoeber that will be – no automatic place given to Iwi. Elayne
Sadly this is not a joke! Dick
I only agree or support Tribal co-governance if there is a proper vote and no so-called privilege of Maori. David
Absolutely NO to Iwi operated apartheid local governance NZ. Tom
Not again! Des
Never! John
Why should tribes have any governance over anything? If they are suitable for the task of governance they will be voted in as will any other candidates. Judith
Maori as fourteen percent of the population certainly do NOT have the right to have control of any decisions. Wendy
ALL council members MUST be elected. We must stop this undemocratic power grab by a minority group. Graeme
A small minority group should never have these powers over the total population! Donald
I read Foina’s report with great interest. The way in which these tribal interest promoters are going about their business shows how ruthless they really are and it seems they stop at nothing to gain control over everything. National’s politicians and these soft toy puppets in the Aickland council seem to go happily along and I have the impression that they have been bought to go along with this 3rd world way of getting what these Maori radicals want. How on earth could they justify or explain these actions to their voters. Well— they simply don’t!! If it was not for the NZCPR all of us would never get to hear anything at all of what is going on here and how democracy in NZ is continuously eroded. I fear the worst by now and wonder how far ordinary NZ citizens can ( and will) be pushed until breaking point. When this point comes things will get ugly.And I cannot imagine that the instigators of these radical pro Maori politics will be able to get out of that situation.They will have no choice but to face the consequences of their actions. Michael
No No No Margaret
The insidious creep of state fostered racism and the erosion of democracy is now getting so serious that for the first time in my 42 years of voting I will be a single issue voter. Come on NZ First! Ken
Absolutely NOT. Why should unelected part Maori have say in anything. If they want to stand for general election and be voted in on merit like everyone else, that is fine. Any thing else is divisive racism. Robbie
Never negotiate with your enemy or evil, e.g. local councils or soviets with their agendas – Agendas 21 & 2030 – yes, 15 years to global slavery as from the U.N.’s signing last year. Don
No way. Sheena
Absolutely outgrageous proposal – and yet another example that happens so frequently now of ‘reverse apartheid’ being alive and well in NZ. Such a proposal just another to divide our nation forever – instead of uniting it as one where all peoples no matter as to race or creed are as one. Hylton
Its NOT just for Iwi its set up for EVERYONE how it is now. Cindy
WE must ensure all kiwis have an equal say. Richard
This land/sea grab by corporate Maori through local bodies is totally undemocratic & further evidence of the Government’s pandering to sovereignty push by Maori. Roy
Never. The sooner Winston, and co get into power the better. They are the only ones with the backbone to say NO. Carrolll
The march of Maori has to stop. A small group of people that did not in the main contribute to the development of the country will end up running the country. Wayne
Why would any one? Makes no sense. Gerhard
Tribal control is “past by date”. Wake up Nats. Alain
Never should happen what has happened to this National Government they have lost control. Geoff
No, No and NO again. Bryan
When will this racist nonsense end? National is captured by the Maori influence which will never leave us unless Maori seats are abolished . Irvine
Maori are already represented as New Zealanders. Lionel
Just more racism on the part of Maori. We should be used to it by now, but somehow it always grates, and makes me wonder what the future holds for NZ in 50 years time. Richard
This is a bad dream …. right? John
When are these racist Maoris going to be stopped. WHO are they? Lance
Will they never give up? It seems as if they adopt the mantra, ‘if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again’. Co-governance will never ever work and should never ever be allowed to happen. Who do these part-Maori people think they are? Our Government is proving itself over and over again to be weak and appeasing when it comes to their never ending demands and if at first they don’t give them something, they will still end up giving them something. ‘These people’ have long learned this so keep on keeping on. It works for them but is creating a huge wrong for this country and the rest of us. Helen
They already want control of freshwater lakes, rivers and streams and now the sea, when is this going to stop ? Graeme
My 87 years began with DEMOCRACY and some autocracy on the side – it is now rapidly becoming AUTOCRACY with democracy.eroded. Barry
Select the best people for local government regardless of race. Tom
There must never be racist control as this will enevitably lead to civil unrest. For there to be true democracy there must be representation by people who are elected by by the public at large. Bryan
We fought 2 world wars to maintain democracy, we don’t need an underhand takeover of assets that rightly belong to all NZer’s. Don
The ‘rots’ got to stop . We are all Kiwis…..aren’t we? Ced
One country one race. Myles
Maybe we need to send all these comments to Mike Hoskins and see if he has the guts to publish them. Bill
No way stop Maori from trying to take away what belongs to all New Zealanders!!!!! Ian
What most people are unaware of is that even maori verbal history acknowledges that there were fair skinned inhabitants here when the maori arrived. Over a period, the majority of the earlier settlers were killed or enslaved, with today’s DNA technology able to prove descendance of some current inhabitants from those peoples. So nothing has changed as far as the maori not-so-hidden agenda is concerned, they are still pursuing their goal of control but doing it far more subtly. Alan
Co-governance is not used to run parliament. Any attempt to do so would elicit a large hue and cry, so why is it alright to use it to govern the running of the Hauraki Gulf Forum. Dennis
Thin end of wedge! Jim
If they want representation theyshould stand for election like everyone else has to. Selection on a board purely and simply because you are of a particular race or creed has no place in NZ and the proposal should be thrown on the rubbish heap where it belongs. Allan
A National disgrace. Donald
Magpies! Chris
No bloody way. Clark
NZ should retain government as a one-people society whereby all decision making is not skewed by any unelected faction seeking advantages overs. John
We must have a non racial democracy. Mike
When will this racism ever cease? Michael
Burglers Graeme
Enough already … one people surely. Bruce
Words fail me. Will this nonsense never end? Wah
Undemocratic & gives race preference. Neil
Enough is enough. This is one country and the TOW never said anything about co governance of the Hauraki Gulf. Graeme
What a joke ….tribal governance of anything…has never happened to date…and never will happen and be efficient , with out costing the tax payer , over and over again , for eternity , very much like the mess Clark left the country in , forcefully introducing policies that sent us broke , …just for her to purchase votes! Roy
I am totally opposed to this as it puts the control totally in the hands of Maori. Kerry
Definitely no.  One country one people. Jim
We must govern for the majority. Robert
Absolutely not. What a racist way of doing things, in NZ. Unbelievable. Our democratically elected officials should be ashamed of themselves and hang their heads in shame. Kevin
Wake up people! Steve
Apartheid develops by apathy and ignorance in NZ. It is happening..Help. Ian
Pre Maori arrival in New Zealand history needs to be opened up and exposed now! We are not waiting until 2063 for this discussion! Rodney
Another shot at democracy. When will this type of bullying ever end? Audrey
Greed. Raced based greed! Peter
As always racism is wrong Government must learn this simple truth and stop promoting it. Eric
I am horrified at the sneaky, sly actions of this rotten govt. what the hell is it with Key and his hangers-on? More votes for Winston – yeah. And I am/was a national voter! Never again while this shonky lot continue on their devious way. Carolyn
Another money grabbing scheme of the tribal faction. Wake up New Zealand, those un-elected so and so empty headed noises should be put to real work. Johan
Absolutely not! Albert
This just goes on and on. If that happened the Maori will put a charge on boating and Island ownership. Murray
NZ must have one rule for all and none of this racist nonsense. Arthur
Apartheid politics! Peter
Absolutely not! – or anywhere else for that matter. Give them an inch and they will take a mile. It will only end when we drive a stake through the heart of the Partnership Myth once and for all. National have really dropped the ball on this whole issue – I may have to seriously reconsider who gets my vote next election – regretfully. Scott
We are supposed to be a democratic country. Brian
Unbelievable. Martin
Clearly do not support any tribal non elected involvement in governance of any type. We are supposed to be living in a democracy!!!? Neil
There are probably more Indians and Chinese in N.Z. than real Maoris. They are being greedy. JOHN
Co-governance is diametrically opposed to the principle of an elected democracy. Maureen
What is wrong with our Government that they allow this undemocratic concept to even be discussed? Steve
Unbelievable what Maori are proposing. This needs greater exposure as most people do not know this is going on. The toe has been in the door but now it is gradually creeping further by stealth. What is happening to democracy? Why are politicians being so weak at the knees over this, the rest of the population should be making large waves against this. Peter
All this mis-interpreted Treaty nonsense simply has to stop. Jim
A matter of trust. Monty
On what grounds? Can’t think of any valid reason why this should happen. Dave
Hell, NO. NZ used to be democracy – not now. Who gave Maori the power to hijack and usurp the legally recognized governmental process of this country. John
Of course I don’t support tribal co-governance of the Hauraki Gulf, or any other part of New Zealand, for that matter. The suggestion is both undemocratic (so what else is new under this administration) and, dare I say it, racist. Martin
The idea is undemocratic and open abuse. Arthur
Just another nail in the coffin of democracy. What a farce the waitangi tribunal has become with the latest claim for compensation from the government for their tribal near-do-wells. Surely the tribes have already been over compensated by settlement of their interminable and often fallacious treaty claims and resulting non-taxable businesses?? They have the wherewithal to look after their own! Alan
Leave things as they are. Why change things when they are working OK. What is wrong with things as they are. Robert
Stop this Maori bullshit – they have their snouts in whatever trough is handy. Kevin
Undemocratic & racial. Jennifer
The proposed rearrangement is a kick in the in the teeth for democracy in NZ! Dennis
Will they ever stop trying to cause division between NZ European and maori? All this is designed to eventually cause a race war. All we get on the media is negative news about maori and their never ending wining about how bad they are treated, as the Ausies say if you are not satisfied with your lot leave the country and try and find a country that will hand out hundred’s of millions of dollars for pathetic claims and bend over backwards to keep them happy. David
Why should there be two governing bodies on this. And what gives the Tribe authority over every other Kiwi. Geoff
No, no and no! Ron
It’s simply more racist bullying. Sharen
What ever happened to one man, one vote and representative democracy? Mark
The Treaty gives equal rights to all; Parliament should not agree to anything that conflicts with this principle. Bernard
Totally wrong. John
NO, NO, NO. New Zealand – waken up. When is this nonsense going to stop? Why do we not see all these articles in the public arena? I arrived in NZ in January 1972, under bond for three years re teaching – liked the climate, lifestyle and stayed on – a big mistake. I would now actively discourage anyone from moving here until democracy is re-established and we are all one people. Fiona
No way. Peter
The first thing that will be imposed is a “Toll Road ” for boating & shipping, just watch nicely!! And THEN annual increases in the charges!! Pierre
Racism. Peter
The British Govt. in1840 had no intention of Partnership [co governmence] with uncivilised savages on the opposite side of the world still living in the stone age.!Maori can get themselves elected to the Hauraki Council in the normal way ?? David
IF we continue to let this happen we will have nothing left in a few years. Colin
No way – it is the death of democracy. Folkert
Protecting the Gulf is going to take a unified approach by everyone and esp the stakeholders. Maori as landowners have a right to representation in this regard, and we as ‘Pakeha’ need their support! David
The concept is racist. Harvey
Democratic vote by public election must be required for all of those on all local councils. Any re-construction of council administration should only be by way of a public poll. Keith
Its time we wear all considered the same. Richard
No way should the Maori have specilal treatment as they a the fourth races of peoples to be brought to this country from all around the Pacific Basin This can be proven without a shadow of a doubt. Noel
Special privilege based on race in a modern NZ makes no sense and is divisive. Mike
Decision making controlled by racial interests is racist. Trevor
This is how to stealthily divide a country – just like so many African and now other countries. We have this weak government walked over by ‘tribes’. Stuart
Under no circumstances must this be allowed to happen. David
It’s unbelievable that such racist, separatist and potentially corrupt policy should be seriously proposed in an egalitarian, representative democracy: but there it is. Our politicians, both local and governmental, are either utterly naive or unconscionably partisan to even contemplate, let alone promote, such blatantly preferential treatment for one sector of the population, based on notional ethno-racial identity alone. That they are evidently trying to put these changes through in great haste, before the local body elections take place, strongly suggests to me that these people know that they are flying in the face of public opinion. The group-think of the pro-treaty lobby has blinded them, it seems, to the enormity of what they are trying to force through. “Shameful” is hardly a strong enough word for it: it is a betrayal of everything that our forebears created in the name of liberal democracy. Graham
Let us have and end to Tribal representation. Equal rights for everyone. Peter
Crazy intentions. Neville
Terrifying rubbish. Geoffrey
Do you REALLY need to ask??? Andy
I have been asking, without reply, for a long time now, why is ‘Key’ so enthusiastically promoting & endorsing a communist to lead the U.N. The answer has become obvious, this government cares nothing about democracy. A.G.R.
Oh for goodness sake, why not just give them the whole *%#&^%$! country and we can all go back whence we came and raise hell in other places! e.g, Scotland , England ,Wales, Holland, Eire Poland, India, Canada et al. Oh I quite forgot, ,they are having territorial battles in Europe too…! I’m fed up with all this power nonsense. Whatever happened to One Country One People?? Grow up, get your relatives out of jail, and clean up that which the tribes do now have……then there may be some sense and reason in backing these wild and widening ambitions. …water, . oil, sand, harbours, the very air we breathe? Enough! PS I shall quite understand if you want to cut out/delete my “expression of interest” this month. Personally. I have had enough of these agendas some of which are most unfortunately supported by the Nats Local body amalgamation in Auckland has also been an Unfortunate Experiment. Mabel
Not for a second. End apartheid in New Zealand now! Kerry
Nor anywhwere else! Andrew
Highly undemocratic. Cliff
Thank you for bringing this underhand movement to public notice. In the South Island, I had no idea of this new deviant proposal by Maoris to gimme, gimme, gimme. They never accept being told no but explore a different avenue to get control of what they want. We have to be vigilant and stop this one now. Chris.
No need for discussion on such an obvious racist action. Vern
The concept is appalling, divisive and racist. Nothing but traitors would agree to this….???? Peter
More political racial claptrap, this Govt. is getting sicker have become yesssss men to a very small minority of the population. Come aboard Winny as they are mentally and morally corrupt. Wait till the Muslims move in???????????????? Ian
Never! Barry
It’s the year 2016 not 1816. Time to move on. Tony
Aphartied again. Edward
Simply racism once again, a curse the world ias always struggling against. John
Absolutely not – co-governance is anti-democratic and should not be tolerated. Mike
No, no, no! It’s a power grab, plain and simple. Francis
Iwi have been planning how to take control of that Forum for years. Those representatives who think they are there to support private tribal aspirations instead of the public interest need to be removed from their roles. Howard
The whole thing is a shambles. Councils should reject the restructuring proposals outright. Roger
Co-governance is just a Maori take-over. Sovereignty activists seizing control of a vital public asset so they can lip the ticket over any consent or activity at all. It’s outrageous. Sue