Police found to have mishandled threat assessment of Zaoui
Green Party Immigration spokesperson, Keith Locke, has been pressing for Ahmed Zaoui’s wife and four children to be able to come here at least for the period that his case is being considered. The case is now likely to drag on for at least five years, through no fault of Mr Zaoui. The bumbling of the Police in the case was exposed in a Police Complaints Authority decision, brought down after a complaint from former Progressive MP Matt Robson.
Read the two releases Keith Locke issued on the case
press release 1
press release 2
Read the NZ Herald story
Papuan music censored in New Zealand festival
‘Merdeka’ meaning ‘freedom’, in the title of a piece of music led to its exclusion from the Asia Pacific Festival in Wellington this month: the Indonesian Embassy successfully sought the withdrawal of Martin Wesley-Smith’s piece ‘Papua Merdeka’.
Read the open letter of protest
Super Fund invests in warmakers
A Green Party investigation into the ethics of investments made by the New Zealand Superannuation Fund found that some of the money was going into companies that produce nuclear weapons and cluster bombs, tobacco companies and firms associated with environmental despoliation and the violation of human rights.
Green Co-leader Russel Norman issued a report,
Betting the Bank on the Bomb
, detailing the problem and revealing that Labour’s New Zealand Super Fund has invested millions of dollars in businesses that the Norway Pension Fund will not touch on ethical grounds.
Betting the Bank on the Bomb (pdf 160mb)
The Greens raised the question in the House, last Wednesday, including the following exchange:
Jeanette Fitzsimons asked the Prime Minister
: Does she stand by her statement yesterday that “New Zealand can aim to be the first nation to be truly sustainable – across the four pillars of the economy, society, the environment, and nationhood.”; if so, is she confident that the investments of the New Zealand Superannuation Fund are consistent with this goal?
The Prime Minister replied
: Yes, I stand by the statement I made yesterday. The legislation setting the mandate for investment in the Superannuation Fund is consistent with that goal, but it may be able to be improved to give better guidance to the fund.
Keith Locke then asked
: How is the $17.7 million Superannuation Fund investment in cluster bomb manufacturers such as Lockheed Martin consistent with her vision of a sustainable nation, and does that investment not undermine the statement made last Friday by Phil Goff, the Minister of Defence, that “New Zealand is at the forefront of international moves to limit the humanitarian impact of cluster munitions.”?
To which the Prime Minister replied
: Some of these international conglomerates have many arms. It is, I think, a matter for legitimate debate as to whether something in one of those arms is so dominant that the whole company should not be invested in it. The New Zealand Superannuation Fund should be taking a close look at how funds in other progressive nations like ours actually invest.
The Prime Minster did indicate support of Maryan Street’s Private Members Bill that would look at this issue.
Read the press release
For an insightful and concerning analysis on US plans for Iran read John Pilger’s latest article ‘A war is coming’. He argues that the United States, as a means of ‘buying time’ for its disaster in Iraq, is planning what will be a catastrophic attack on Iran.
A war is coming
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