by John Robinson

divided peopleWe are getting through the pandemic as one people.  But we are not one people.  The racism that is now common in New Zealand legislation is made clear in the COVID-19 Recovery (Fast-Track Consenting) Act.  This sets up an expert consenting panel with one member from the relevant local authorities and one nominated as the representative of the relevant iwi authorities.

We all, every one of us, vote for local bodies.  Maori have a full say in election of those local authorities.  Maori have an additional second vote, for the iwi representative.  Here is double the representation based on race (see the definition of Maori in legislation).

The equality promise by this bill is that of Animal Farm, “where some animals are more equal than others,” with special positions and added rights and powers.  Those who are not pigs have less equality, which is no equality at all.  I object to being a second-rate citizen in my own country – we all should.

Additionally, each committee must follow the dictates of an unclear Maori culture, which has changed considerably since 1840, which differs between tribes, which is never made clear to the rest of us.  Thus, “the members of a panel must have expertise in tikanga Maori and matauranga Maori.”  This is no common meeting ground.  My culture is missing, to be ignored by the gatekeepers of political correctness.  Again, I, like so many others, am a second-class citizen.  That should not be so.  We should be one people.

Parliament should turn back and end this racism, this arrogant separation into two peoples based on race.

Waikanae, 23 June 2020

These aren’t the only concerns about this Act, railroaded through Parliament under urgency by the Jacinda government; comment about the draconian powers grabbed by the PM and state is coming. —Eds