11 August 2000
The Green Party's immigration spokesperson Keith Locke has backed Mangere MP Taito Phillip Field's call for a review of
the overstayer legislation.
"The matter is urgent," said Mr Locke, "because from October 1 many long-term Samoan and Tongan overstayers will be able
to be kicked out of the country without any right of appeal.
"This is causing huge anguish in South Auckland, as I found out when I addressed a meeting of 800 Pacific Islanders in
Mangere last month," he said.
"We are a Polynesian nation, and we increasingly celebrate the Samoan and Tongan part of our national identity.
"How can we claim as our own the Jonah Lomu's and Beatrice Faumuina's while we are prepared to toss their relations out
of the country at a moments notice?
"Why should we rip Pacific Island families apart just because of some rigid deadline imposed by a National
"The Green Party says, 'abolish the October 1 deadline'. Bring in a humanitarian policy for Pacific migrants, which
welcomes them in to the New Zealand family," said Mr Locke.