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Thousands of demonstrators marched down Queen St yesterday to protest against the Electoral Finance Bill, warning the public their right to free speech will be revoked should the law be passed.

Protest organiser John Boscawen led the march from the Town Hall, alongside Garth McVicar of the Sensible Sentencing Trust, and Bob McCoskrie of Family First, despite news of Boscawen's father's death two days earlier. Boscawen says the legislation is about people's right to freedom of speech.

"It's a sad time for me, but I believe my father would have wanted me to be here today," he said. "It's important to be here and get the message across to the public, that we need to step up and fight for our right to free speech."

More marches are planned next week in Wellington and Christchurch. The bill is set to come into effect from January 1 next year.