INDEPENDENT NEWS

Better Economics But Socially "Racial Apartheid"

Published: Thu 15 Jun 2000 05:19 PM
SOME BETTER ECONOMICS BUT SOCIALLY
“RACIAL APARTHEID”
“The Budget has made some moves in the right economic direction, but its ‘Closing the Gaps’ programme will create serious racial divisions – it is social apartheid,” said the New Zealand First Leader and former Treasurer, Rt Hon Winston Peters.
Mr Peters welcomed the modest increase in spending on Education, Health, Research and Development and Regional initiatives.
“Increased spending in these areas is imperative and we applaud any moves to increase exports and create new jobs. These are tentative steps in the right direction.
“The Budget recognises and starts to deal with the problems of an aging population, but fails to deal with the crucial issue of establishing a stand alone superannuation fund.
Mr Peters said the most serious flaw in the Budget was the allocation of nearly a billion dollars over the next four years for closing the gaps, for Maori and Pacific Islanders, which he described as an “absolute disaster”.
“It is a policy that could have come from George Speight’s policy advisers in Fiji.
“Programmes should be based on human needs – not racial differences. The inevitable result will be separatism and divisiveness within communities throughout the country, “ said Mr Peters.
“Some of the ‘Closing the Gaps’ initiatives are expensive race based talkfests, like the hui planned for October. (We remember the 1984 Hui Taumata which ended as a Hui No Mata!)
“The first Labour Government of Michael Joseph Savage concentrated on human needs – not racial needs. In social policy the fifth Labour Government has forgotten that it represents ALL New Zealanders.
“Every New Zealander is entitled to good food, good shelter, good health and good education. These are basic human rights, not racial needs.
Ends

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