Dear Attorney-General – you have to release the Covid19 lockdown advice 


Dear Attorney-General.

This. Isn’t. Acceptable.

Attorney-General’s decision not to release COVID-19 lockdown advice angers Opposition MPs

The Attorney-General’s decision not to release Crown law advice about the COVID-19 lockdown has angered Opposition MPs who say Kiwis deserve to see the legal basis on which their civil liberties were restricted.

As Attorney-General, Labour MP and minister David Parker acts as the chief law officer of the Crown and has responsibility for supervising New Zealand law and advising the Government on legal matters.

He appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee on Thursday and was asked by ACT leader David Seymour if he is prepared to allow the public to see the advice on the alert level 4 lockdown enforced on March 25.

Seymour said there was “significant confusion” about what Kiwis were allowed to do and what powers police had, and it wasn’t until more than a week later that clear guidance was released about the rules that citizens and police were operating under.

“In the intervening period, New Zealanders were being arrested,” Seymour said. “The public needs to know that during this period police were acting within the law and not simply operating on the basis of the Government’s public statements.”

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Seymour referred to when former Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the committee earlier this month, and said he would ask the Solicitor-General about releasing the advice after concerns were raised about police using discretion

“It’s difficult to see how the public interest and the rule of law can be outweighed by any other consideration other than the fact that you have the ability to object to it being released,” Seymour said.

Now normally one could argue that David Seymour is just political grandstanding here and normally I would be the first to claim that against him, B-U-T, you can’t place the entire country under a Police State and not release the legal advice that provides the legal basis of that vast amputation of our civil rights.

I know David Parker.

He is a good man. One of the most intelligent minds inside the Government and while I despise the Police State we have become overnight, I 100% support the rational and the decision to go into lockdown.

Hell I was calling for it when the rest of the left were claiming criticism of China was racist!

I fully support the 4 week lockdown and I support extending it if the science demands it, but most of all I support this damned Police State being removed and our civil liberties restored the fucking second this plague and its threat to our public health is over.

Releasing the Crown Law advice that is the basis for this lockdown is actually urgently important and this response by David Parker isn’t really even close to satisfactory…

Parker said he is “satisfied” the Government followed the law and is confident the Bill of Rights Act has not been breached.

…under any other scenario I would accept David at his word, and I absolutely believe that once the advice is released its ill back up David’s assurances, B-U-T we are living under a fucking obscene intrusion upon our collective civil rights, this is as close to a Police State as we are going to get and history is watching Minister Parker. Your assurances, while completely satisfactory to me, are not satisfactory to history.

A Liberal Progressive Democracy like ours doesn’t have the army or police force to enforce the brutal will of the State, it must rely on the good will of well informed citizens to act in solidarity for the common good and to date the vast, vast, vast majority of NZers have done this, but to hide the Crown Law advice which gives the Government the basis for this huge truncation of our civil liberties IS NOT acceptable in that trust relationship.

Let me be clear, Minister Parker’s justifications to not release the Crown Law advise are reasonable…

“In terms of the position on legal professional privilege, there is nothing unusual or different happening here,” Parker said. “The Crown, like anyone else, is entitled to claim legal professional privilege in respect of the advice that it receives.”

…and under any other scenario would be fine, but this isn’t any other scenario, it is a unique event that asks of us an enormous loss of civil liberties.

Trust is quickly lost if the Government refuse to be transparent.

This IS still a Democracy.



  1. So are you agin’ it or for it Bombarino?
    This is a real ‘categorical maybe’ kind of article. 😀

  2. I think David needs a tap on the shoulder, a “Heads up, Mate!”

    “The most transparent government” (remember?)

  3. Funny..I don’t *feel* like my Civil Liberties have gone …just the right to mingle with crowds , and as we’re in the middle of a pandemic that doesn’t feel like a restriction

    What am I missing here ?

    • MS, I don’t feel as tho’ I’ve lost any either. However there’s a group of people who do feel that way and they’re becoming increasingly vocal.

      Our government promised to be open and transparent. It’s time to deliver on that promise.

  4. I see 2 people have taken Jacinda to court for breaching their rights due to the lock down. Could this be why he cannot say anythink at this stage.?

    • breaching their rights due to the lock down

      Too funny, as one was already on home detention, the other is his mate whom he talked into doing it with him. Waste of courts’ time and money with their mischievous crap.

      • Thank you for the back ground story. As you say what a waste of the courts time.
        Re your comment on open government that arguement was lost with the non disclosure of correspondence between Twyford and Genter and the back story to Ian Galloway endorsement of a drug dealer.
        In the current situation there is a disconnect between what Bloomfield says about PPE and what is actually happening on the front line controlled by the DHBs

        • a disconnect between what Bloomfield says about PPE and what is actually happening on the front line

          Yes. Definitely. They need to find a way to cut through whatever stuff-ups are happening down the delivery line – surely it would only take a few phone calls with a stern rap to get things moving! Too slack atm!

  5. Move along nothing to see here.

    The left are going stir crazy. Proof. Making up ‘conspiracies’ and exaggerating the facts.

    Its C19 ffs Martyn.

    Maoris died unnecessary in 1918 for another complacent government.

  6. Having much to agree with Bomber, we don’t want to trade our human rights for beans and neither does the attorney general want a riote. I guess that’s why the attorney general can not think aloud about a situation that changes every hour.

  7. I hope lockdown works well.
    But there is some confusion.
    Rules are often refereed to but don’t seem to be found for reference. Flexibility is probably very important but the language used is indefinite.
    The Police may well have provisions for wide powers under the Health act and declared emergency and that may well be important as I am sure it is.
    There are many situations where the unwritten, oft referred to rules create confusion.
    Transparency of the legal basis for “the rules” and how they are made would help understanding.

  8. Mhmm yes,… this is STILL a democracy.

    What say you, David Parker?

    Then let the truth be known.

    PS: We don’t care about your position, your salary or your personal moment in the political sunshine. There will be plenty more in future that will outshine YOU. You are but a small number in a much larger number of average political minions in history’s annals that will go on to create a chronology of similar ‘less than average’ political leaders,… don’t think you shine above , or supplant any before you. You are but yet another simply average NZ citizen voted in as an highly paid elected govt official.

    Do your job and do not think we reckon you as some sort of visionary or revolutionary thinker. You are not. You are simply there as a well paid elected official to do our bidding. Nothing more, and nothing less.

    Now just get on with the bloody job we are paying you to do.

    Without the song and dance.

  9. Rhetoric…

    Number of lockdown breaches, cops ‘won’t hesitate’ to take enforcement action.

    “Our first step has been to educate people on the rules, but if people continue to break them as in this case, police can use their discretion to warn people, or if necessary arrest them,” Central District Commander Supt Chris de Wattingnar said….bla bla bla


    And while that fight was being dealt with, the police were unable to attend other reported breaches of the lockdown, including a large party in Papakura in which van loads of people were arriving from outside the local bubble.

    Police are being stretched for resources as thousand of calls come through about parties and other breaches of the nationwide lockdown.

    RNZ has talked to a man who reported the large gathering of people at a house party in Papakura overnight, but police failed to show.

    On Saturday afternoon, cars and van loads of people started turning up to the house.

    The neighbour first called the 105 police non-emergency line, and was told an officer would attend as soon as possible.

    When the party only grew and got louder, the man called the 111 emergency number at about 10pm.

    He called 111 again at about 3am, when he was then asked to call noise control.

    He advised the 111 operator that noise control was closed during the lockdown, and that calls were diverted to the police.

    No officers attended the house until Sunday afternoon after questions were sent through by RNZ.

    “You know, you have empathy for them for what’s going on,” the neighbour said of the police.

    “But as I said to the police, as long as you ask me to accept the fact that you couldn’t attend, I’d ask you to put yourself in my shoes and ask yourself if you’d be the same if it was your mother, or your daughter who lived next door?”

    Translation…..if you are ignoring vitally important lockdown rules, the Police will say there there naughty boy, please don’t do that again. If you’re a surfer on your own they will give you a warning in front of the cameras. If you’re an elderly couple but there are no cameras around, they will bark at you as you don’t pose a threat to them. If you’re a hopeless feral git on your own and repeatedly highlight what a chocolate fireguard the police are at this time and embarrasses them, the police will eventually charge you and then proudly spout off about it so it “appears” they have teeth.

    If however, there is a gang related party being attended by van loads from outside the area, police will not attend, despite the high risk of Covid-19 transmission and despite receiving complaints about the party over a 10+ hour period.

    • The same story played out with the gun control.They invaded the home of a family man who was a bit loose on Facebook but the gangs were left alone in most cases. I respect the police but their masters make them toothless

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