Greens call for referendum on asset sales

By Kris Shannon

Green Party co leader Russel Norman. Photo / Greg Bowker
Green Party co leader Russel Norman. Photo / Greg Bowker

The Green Party is calling for a referendum on asset sales as soon as possible, and say it could be held early next year, before any of the power companies are sold.

The party is in the Keep Our Assets coalition, which has collected 240,000 signatures as it strives to get the 310,000 needed to trigger a citizen's initiated referendum.

The coalition launched a drive today aiming to collect the remaining signatures by the end of next month.

"A referendum early next year is a real possibility," said Greens co-leader Russel Norman.

"If we have the required number of signatures by the end of September, Parliament's Clerk of the House can validate the petition by the end of November."

Dr Norman said the Government's asset sales programme was in crisis and the referendum campaign on a roll.

"If the Government delays the holding of a referendum then they are playing politics with the issue against the will of New Zealanders.

"The Government needs to delay their asset sales agenda. The Waitangi Tribunal report, the state of the companies themselves, and the referendum are just three reasons why it would be foolish for the Government to press ahead."


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