We encourage all New Zealanders to make sure that they have their say in this referendum. The National Government must listen to the result
The asset sales referendum will be Kiwis’ chance to have their say on National’s asset sales, Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said today.
The National Government was required to set a date for the referendum after the Keep Our Assets coalition secured 327,224 signatures to trigger a referendum on asset sales. The referendum period has been set as 22nd November to 13th December. The referendum question is: “Do you support the Government selling up to 49% of Meridian Energy, Mighty River Power, Genesis Power, Solid Energy and Air New Zealand?”
“This referendum is a victory for democracy. Thousands of volunteers and hundreds of thousands of signatories have given New Zealanders the chance to have our voices heard on asset sales,” said Mrs Turei.
“I am calling on National to suspend the asset sales until after the referendum results are in.
“The referendum question is very clear and we believe that the answer will be too. A large majority of New Zealanders oppose asset sales.
“We encourage all New Zealanders to make sure that they have their say in this referendum. The National Government must listen to the result.
“Parliament passed the Citizens Initiated Referenda Act in 1993 specifically to enable New Zealanders to directly express their views on the big political questions. That is exactly what this 327,224 strong petition has achieved,” said Mrs Turei.
The Green Party offered to delay the referendum until the general election if the National Government suspended their ideological asset sales programme. John Key refused despite the Act enabling such a delay.
“John Key’s arrogance over asset sales is hard to believe,” Mrs Turei said.
“He has refused to delay his asset sales until a referendum is held. He has tried to sell as much as he can before the public has its say.
“The Prime Minister believes he has a mandate for these sales; that mandate will now be tested,” said Mrs Turei.