Shauni James is a Rotorua Daily Post reporter

Grey Power sceptical over political party's agenda

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Rosemary MacKenzie.
Rosemary MacKenzie.

A Grey Power Rotorua spokeswoman says she thinks a new political party formed to represent older New Zealanders is a "one-issue party".

It was announced this week the New Zealand Seniors Party plans to register as an official party and will run candidates in the 2017 general election.

It was formed by a group of pensioners in Wellington but its executive includes people from Auckland, Christchurch and the provinces.

The party says seniors needed more meaningful representation in Parliament.

Grey Power Rotorua spokeswoman Rosemary MacKenzie said from what she had read on the party she did not think it was established with Grey Power.

"It's a one-issue party and you can't govern a country over one issue."

She said the party members seemed to be hoping to get pensions from all the countries they had worked in, which was not acceptable in her view.

A key part of the party's platform would be fighting the "unfair" deduction of overseas pensions from New Zealand Superannuation.

"Today's seniors are tired of being ignored and dictated to by politicians, government departments and their overpaid staff," the party said.

"They are not willing to remain invisible. They are educated and bring a lifetime of experience and knowledge to the table, and they are certainly capable of taking an active role in the running of their own country."

Rotorua Lakes Council councillor appointee of Positive Ageing Rotorua Mark Gould said he thought the elderly needed more representation in Parliament, as the "only real person who supports them is Winston Peters".

Mr Gould said he thought the party would get a lot of support in the future.

He said many elderly needed support due to their incomes not increasing. "The people will be asset rich but cash poor," he added.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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