Myrtle Rust A Disaster Kiwis Can Help To Defeat

New Zealand First is amazed that the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy did not use a Ministerial Statement to ask that 4.7 million New Zealanders join the effort to locate incursions of the plant pest Myrtle Rust.

This is what the Minister should have done instead of playing silly politics,” says New Zealand First Leader and Member of Parliament for Northland, Rt Hon Winston Peters.


“We need the help of every New Zealander, young and old and whether you live in town or the country.


“We need to work together to locate Myrtle Rust.  This plant pest poses a clear and present danger to our natives like Manuka, Pohutukawa, Rata and Kanuka.  That is why we are asking all New Zealanders to go to and onto the page about Myrtle Rust.


“If people suspect they have found Myrtle Rust do not touch it but instead call the MPI Exotic Pest and Disease Hotline on 0800 80 99 66.  If you can, take a photo but do not touch or disturb the plant because that could release and spread spores into the air.


“Messages like this is why Minister Guy should have used Parliament this afternoon, especially since we now have confirmation of infected Pohutukawa on the Kermadecs.


“Having raised this in Parliament one month ago today and immediately before confirmation came out, New Zealand First knows this is a national effort.  We need all New Zealanders on the same team to help to defeat this devastating incursion,” says Mr Peters.