Securing Our Borders and Protecting Our Identity

Published: Fri 27 May 2005 02:22 PM
Speech - embargoed against delivery
An address by Rt Hon Winston Peters to members of Orewa GreyPower on Friday, 27 May 2005, 2.00pm at the St Johns Catholic Church Hall, Center Way Road, Orewa
"Securing Our Borders and Protecting Our Identity"
For individuals as with communities, identity is our most treasured possession.
It is why each and every one of us has a name.
We all have a place in our families, in our circle of friends or in our society.
On a wider scale we all come from a certain town, suburb or city, a province or one of the islands of New Zealand.
And we share the common identity of being New Zealanders.
If you have ever wondered what that means, go to an international sporting event, or take part in an Anzac service or other public ceremony.
Being a New Zealander is something precious.
That is why we called ourselves New Zealand First.
It means that we place our country above ourselves.
We believe in words like patriotism, loyalty and traditional values.
We believe in the concept of the people of this country owning it.
We believe that we must protect and defend it.
And we believe that we have the right to say who should come and share it with us.
No other party in New Zealand has ever taken the protection of our borders as seriously as we have.
In the "80s and "90s successive Labour and National governments sold off nearly everything of value that we had.
In fact, all we really had left was our good name - our citizenship.
Throughout the world, it still meant something to be a New Zealand citizen.
Now, we are at risk of losing our good name and the value of our citizenship along with it.
In 2005 we struggle to know what a New Zealander really is because over the past fourteen years National and Labour have flooded NZ with immigrants.
The last census revealed that over 300,000 people in New Zealand spoke little or no English.
We used to be an English speaking country with English and Maori our official languages.
Yet now the Auckland District Health Board has to cater for 280 plus different languages - all at taxpayer expense.
We have now reached the point where you can wander down Queen Street in Auckland and wonder if you are still in New Zealand - or some other country.
The importance of a sound immigration policy has taken on a renewed urgency because of events overseas and at home.
It is now a matter of national security and it poses a very real threat to the value of our citizenship.
Recently we exposed a former cabinet minister in Saddam Hussein's government and several other high ranking officials of his regime living in New Zealand.
When we raised this issue it set off a train of events which highlighted again many of the failings of the Immigration Service.
We gave the Immigration Minister five days notice that this man and his wife were here.
Now you would think, given that this man did not seek to conceal his identity that after five days this government and its officials could find him.
They could not.
But in the rush to try and find him it was revealed that New Zealand's overseas offices which issue visas were in many cases being staffed by foreigners.
So foreigners were deciding who could come into our country.
And, unlike almost every other developed nation in the world, New Zealand had not established an "undesirables" category for those from tyrannical and murderous regimes.
Unlike other developed and many undeveloped nations, we have proven beyond dispute that this government is not taking national security issues seriously.
What also became clear was that this government has absolutely no idea just who is here and what they are doing here.
In short, they went looking for a wolf and produced a rabbit.
For over a year the Immigration Minister had been promising to review the Immigration Act, but had done nothing.
However earlier this week he made a belated announcement of a review that might lead to a law change in two years.
Two years - in other words do nothing.
They could at least close the gates!
Another disturbing issue has been the release of Statistics New Zealand population projections going forward to the year 2021.
If immigration levels are not controlled, the Asian population here will increase 145 percent from an estimated 270,000 in 2001 to 670,000 in 2021.
This means they will account for 15 percent of the population, or one in eight people.
And if someone with one part in 512 can call themselves a Maori they have already passed Maori as the second largest ethnic group.
Now, whenever we raise this issue we get accused of being racist or xenophobic.
However, we raise it for one simple reason.
We actually have a choice about these demographic projections.
The growth in Maori and Pacific Island populations over the same period is primarily due to natural birth rates but almost all of this projected Asian population growth is from immigration.
In other words we are being colonised without having any say in the numbers of people coming in and where they are from.
This is how it goes.
There is a net outflow of just over 18,000 New Zealanders to Australia and others elsewhere each year.
So while we are down by 18,000 a year to Australia alone, in the same period we are bringing in 19,000 new Asian immigrants to New Zealand.
It is all part of Labour's ethnic engineering and re-population policy.
A skills crisis was the excuse for doing it yet in 2005 we have the biggest skills crisis in New Zealand's history. And with imported criminal activity like stand over tactics and kidnapping which we had barely heard of, what on earth is going on?
New Zealand First has a five point plan to address this immigration crisis.
The first point is the need for a comprehensive population policy.
Our policy will eliminate the government's blind commitment to bring in 45,000 people each year, whatever their value to our economy.
We simply must stop the current year on year knee jerk reaction and start working on ten year and 25 year plans.
We need to establish our long-term labour market demands and if New Zealanders cannot be trained for the jobs, we can then start looking for people with the skills we need.
We don't want some miscellaneous rag tag bunch that will end up with many on welfare or driving a taxi.
New Zealanders should have a say on who these people should be and where they will go.
The population policy must include retaining skilled New Zealanders here and encouraging New Zealanders off-shore to return.
Kiwis are in huge demand overseas but we also need them here.
Point two in our plan is cleaning up the Immigration Service.
As an initial step we will set up a forensic team to protect the integrity of New Zealand citizenship.
This organisation will be known as the Immigration Inspectorate.
It will scan all previous visa applications for the past six years.
This team will be dedicated to searching for inconsistencies, anomalies and potential risks.
Its purpose is clear - to ensure that the Immigration Service is impeccable in defending New Zealand 's interests.
The Inspectorate will also act as an immigration "Flying Squad"
- To make random double checks of immigration decisions to confirm that every care and precaution has been taken;
- To investigate incidents of immigration fraud;
- To quickly get on top of pressure points;
- To weed our incompetent or corrupt staff;
The Inspectorate will be recruiting New Zealanders of the highest integrity - who are not from the staff of the current Immigration Service.
Political correctness will not be a criteria for selection.
We will be looking for intelligence - investigative skills - determination - and yes - patriotism.
We will also increase Immigration staff numbers to act more zealously over border security and to replace foreign nationals overseas who are processing our visa applications.
The third point in our plan is to make fundamental changes to our immigration laws.
The first must be to create an "undesirables" category, to ensure those from dangerous and unethical regimes are red-flagged before they get here.
We simply cannot tolerate former ministers of corrupt and evil regimes being allowed entry.
We will also introduce DNA testing where the nature and status of family relationships is not clear or where there is suspicion of fraud.
We are going to introduce fingerprinting and eye scanning - or in short use biometrics technology available abroad.
We will remove the capacity for New Zealand to even consider for refugee status, those with terrorism related convictions in other jurisdictions. In short enforce the UN convention on refugees.
This would end once and for all the expensive (over $2million) experiment of the Zaoui case.
We will also ensure that anybody held as a suspected terrorist under the Immigration Act cannot receive bail - unless it is to the nearest airport.
We will change the nature of the appeals process, to ensure it cannot ever again be an endless process of taxpayer funded litigation.
In light of this we will make the Refugee Status Appeals Authority more directly responsible to Parliament, rather than its current quasi-judicial status.
It will have the capacity to review cases to ensure due process was followed, but its ability for discretionary decisions and interpretation will be curbed.
We will meet our UN obligation to refugees but we believe that our humanitarian benevolence has been massively abused by the family reunification policy.
Let me give you an example. Thirty-one of the so-called Tampa Boys have so far brought in 207 additional family members - more than six each!
And in the case of three of them, 33 already!
This is where the system breaks down because the requirements are much lower for refugee and family reunification streams than for those in the general or business streams and they are open to abuse.
So we propose that in the case of refugees - family reunification will be limited to spouses and immediate dependent siblings only.
For all others, the requirements for family reunification will be aligned more closely to the general category, with higher standards of English, a job or proof of income and a commitment to New Zealand culture.
We must also be more creative in our humanitarian efforts.
It is worth noting that one dollar spent on aid is almost ten times as effective as money spent on immigration programmes.
Put simply, if we were to increase our aid budget to those who need help in their own country, it would be far more economical than bringing them to New Zealand.
As well it means less dislocation for the individuals concerned.
Our aid budget is too low but effectively targeted aid could allow us to continue our humanitarian efforts, but place less strain on our domestic infrastructure.
Our final point is cleaning up the immigration consultants industry.
The number of rip-off merchants who prey on unsuspecting applicants is truly shocking.
It is an industry crying out for regulation and serious scrutiny.
But this is just the tip of the iceberg.
We must also fight organised crime issuing false documentation, from drivers licences through to university degrees.
It is linked to insurance fraud, illegal gambling, prostitution and all manner of crime such as murder, kidnapping and protection rackets.
It must be stopped and we intend to ensure it is.
Police will be better resourced to deal with it.
Immigration consultants will be regulated and licensed.
And the Immigration Service will also have the capacity to remove those involved in such activities.
What we have announced today will be a new start in addressing many of the flaws in our immigration system.
National and Labour have betrayed the birthright of all New Zealanders through mindless policies of allowing thousands of immigrants to come here from alien cultures.
Finally Labour is realising this folly. They have announced a review of the Immigration Act but are doing nothing about it for two years.
By this time we will have had sixteen years of open door immigration, exposing New Zealand to all forms of security risks.
Whilst this happened we lost our special status with Australia.
New Zealanders going to Australia must now wait two years to access their benefit system.
This is a scandal that I will outline in the next few weeks.
We in New Zealand First will not tolerate this. It is time for action.
We don't mind if we ruffle a few feathers or put a few noses out of joint.
We would rather make our borders safe than "celebrate our diversity" - whatever that means.
New Zealand is for New Zealanders. This is our place.
The rest are here at our invitation. We will weed out those illegals who should not be here.
We will not have 20,000 overstayers. "Give or take five percent" - (Swain)
And those who are here for genuine reasons and want to contribute and become New Zealanders, we will welcome.
And give them the same rights as New Zealanders.

Next in New Zealand politics

Oranga Tamariki Cuts Commit Tamariki To State Abuse
By: Te Pati Maori
Inflation Data Shows Need For A Plan On Climate And Population
By: New Zealand Council of Trade Unions
Annual Inflation At 4.0 Percent
By: Statistics New Zealand
West Coast Swim Spot Testing Clear Of E-coli
By: Brendon McMahon - Local Democracy Reporter
Government Throws Coal On The Climate Crisis Fire
By: Green Party
Public Transport Costs To Double As National Looks At Unaffordable Roading Project Instead
By: New Zealand Labour Party
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILE © Scoop Media