Hon Shane Jones, Spokesperson for Māori Affairs
New Zealand First has opposed the Canterbury Regional Council (Ngāi Tahu Representation) Bill in Parliament today.
The Bill seeks to have two members appointed to Environment Canterbury by Ministers, based on the recommendation of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu (TRoNT).
“New Zealand First welcomes the restoration of regional democracy to Canterbury, and recognise that Ngāi Tahu members make valuable contributions to the Council’s governance and operations. There is nothing stopping members from standing for election just like everyone else,” says New Zealand First Māori Affairs spokesperson Hon Shane Jones.
“They need to receive a mandate from the region they wish to represent and should not get special treatment.
“New Zealand First believes that this is unnecessary overreach which undermines democracy in our country,” says Mr Jones.