< March 2019 newsletter

Canterbury Regional Council (Ngāi Tahu Representation) Bill

The latest news, via Parliamentary Order Papers, is that the bill has been postponed until further notice. Canterbury local, John Bell, who is spearheading the public campaign against the bill, is asking everyone to write to National MPs urging them to ensure that the Bill is defeated at a First Reading. The more letters to that effect as possible, the better. A First Reading defeat would save us the trouble of flooding a Select Committee with submissions.

Contact details:

Leader of National Party, Hon Simon Bridges: [email protected]

Leader of NZ First, Rt Hon Winston Peters: [email protected]

Other MPs contact details are available HERE

Another way you can help is to sign the petition that has been launched to oppose this bill. It is open for signing online. Please add your name if you have not done so and encourage your contacts to do likewise.

If you are able to join or assist John, please contact him at [email protected]

What is the Canterbury Regional Council (Ngāi Tahu Representation) Bill?

This bill will empower Te Rūnganga o Ngāi Tahu (TRoNT) to appoint up to two members to the Canterbury Regional Council after the 2019 local elections. The two appointees will sit and vote alongside the 14 elected councillors. While the councillors would be accountable to ratepayers – to act in the best interests of the wider community – the appointed iwi representatives would have no accountability to anyone but themselves. It is noted also that members of Ngai Tahu would be represented by the councillors they voted for as well as the Ngai Tahu appointees.

For more information see Hobson’s Pledge article Ngai Tahu Representation Bill is absurd.

Go back to the March 2019 newsletter


No place for democracy in Ngāi Tahu grab for political power

Oral submissions on the bill to entrench Ngāi Tahu seats on Environment Canterbury were heard by the Māori Affairs Committee last week – and those who watched the proceedings report that there were considerably more presentations in opposition than those in support. Continue reading

No to designated seats for Ngāi Tahu representatives on CRC

Last month we celebrated as the Canterbury Regional Council Ngai Tahu Representation Bill was voted down in parliament. Following this welcome news, hopefully many have written to Simon Bridges, Winston Peters and David Seymour to show appreciation for their stand, and to congratulate Shane Jones and Nick Smith for their speeches against the bill, as reported on RadioNZ, available HERE. If you have not done so, it’s not too late, we are sure they’d love to hear from you. Continue reading

Good News - designated seats for Ngāi Tahu voted down

New Zealand First has scuppered Labour's bid to give Ngāi Tahu permanent seats on the Canterbury Regional Council, saying its special treatment for Māori. Shane Jones acknowledged the party's long-held position against separate seats for Māori on local body councils. Continue reading