A mail from the Taxpayers Union is below.

All your editors are fundamentally opposed to the principle of having separate elected seats for any one ethnic group. At best it is patronising — suggesting that members of that group are incapable of getting elected to general seats, when there is no evidence of that; Labour’s own influx of new MPs last October demonstrated the point — and at worst it smacks of Apartheid. The whole basis of our society should be that everyone is equal and there is one law for all. Fortunately, KCDC rejected this last year, but WCC and the GWRC are still floating the idea.

South African separatism

Have you heard the news? Yesterday, Local Government Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced that the Government will be moving under urgency to change the law to stop people having their say on Māori wards for local government. I’m emailing to ask for your help so the Taxpayers’ Union can fight this law change.

According to Stuff:

At present the wards can be overturned in public polls triggered by petitions supported by 5 per cent of council voters.

Mahuta proposes to have the new legislation through Parliament by February 21 to ensure that the nine councils around the country that were faced with holding a poll, including New Plymouth, will not need to.

Make no mistake: this will entrench left-wing (high rates) majorities on our local councils.

Labour’s plan is a constitutional and electoral outrage. They’re ramming a law change through Parliament under urgency to cancel legally triggered referenda because they think people will vote the wrong way.

In 22 out of 24 referenda, the public has voted against introducing Māori wards – that’s why Labour wants to retrospectively change the rules!

More Māori wards will mean more Labour-friendly councillors. In this US, the gaming of electoral boundaries is known as “gerrymandering” a cynical manipulation of electoral processes that needs to be called out.

The Taxpayers’ Union is the only organisation with a track record of holding New Zealand’s local councils to account and standing up for local democracy. We need your help today to expose the Government’s plan to hijack local democracy.

Unlike for Parliamentary seats, there are no rules in local government to ensure that wards are of roughly equal size. That means that Māori wards can (and will) be used to screw the scrum in Labour’s favour around council chambers around the country.

We need to fight back

If anything, local councils need more democratic accountability – not removing the one area of direct democracy.  Will you chip-in to our campaign fund so we can fight the Government’s proposal?

Unlike the Human Rights Commission, Race Relations Commissioner, and most of those pushing to overwrite direct democracy, we are reliant on your donation to make this work possible. Click here to make a confidential donation.

Thank you for your support.

David Farrar
New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union