Thursday, 30 January 2014 10:18

Act's Epsom seat up for grabs

ACT PARTY_LOGOACT's Epsom and leadership nominees will go head-to-head at a meeting tonight, before the party decides who'll take it into this year's election.

With leader and Epsom MP John Banks stepping down, ACT has the choice of splitting his two roles.

David Seymour's seeking just the Epsom candidacy and believes the roles should be separated.

The other two contenders - Jamie Whyte and former MP John Boscawen both want both the leadership and Epsom.

- Rhema Media/Newstalk ZB


Published in National

parliament -_NZ_chambers2New and familiar faces have been welcomed to Parliament as the House sits for the first time this year.

National MP Sam Lotu-Iiga has been sworn in as minister, taking on Pacific Island Affairs; and two new MPs were also sworn in to Parliament at 2pm.

National's Joanne Hayes replaces Katrina Shanks, who retired from politics at the end of last year; while Labour's Poto Williams has been waiting to take her seat in the house since having won the Christchurch East by-election last November.

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett picks up the Local Government portfolio, while the prodigal Peter Dunne makes a ministerial comeback. He has been sworn in as Minister of Internal Affairs and returns to the role of Associate Health Minister.

The United Future leader quit his portfolios last year after refusing to cooperate with an inquiry into who leaked a GCSB report to media.

- Newstalk ZB

Published in National
Thursday, 05 December 2013 18:00

Kiwis not ready for a presidential republic

NZ FlagIt has taken two years and $2 million to discover New Zealanders do not know very much about constitutional issues.

A government-appointed panel reviewing our unwritten constitution held 120 meetings and received more than 5,200 submissions from the public on issues like whether New Zealand needs a written constitution, Maori seats, and parliament's size and term.

It seems there is little taste for becoming a republic - but Kiwis have suggested changes to the way parliament represents them, election timings and the role of the Treaty.

The panel says there is no broad support for a written constitution but it does suggest putting all the different parts of New Zealand's constitution into a single law.

It also wants the Government to set up a process to examine options for the future role of the Treaty of Waitangi.

The panel recommends we stay with 120 MPs, but also suggests the government look further at other issues - like three-year terms and the future role of the Treaty of Waitangi.

The panel’s main, and strongest recommendation, however, is that the "conversation" about New Zealand's constitutional arrangements should continue.

Panel co-chair, Professor John Burrows, says a move towards a republic was not in the panel's brief, but some people still raised the issue.

"We didn't detect in the submissions we got, a widespread feeling – yet - that we're ready for a republic. And I think if people had felt really strongly about that they would have said so. Some people did, but on the other hand, some people supported the monarchy."

Professor Burrows says many people wanted to make a bigger contribution to the debate, but did not know enough – and many who submitted said they needed better information and education on the issues.

"Given it’s such a large subject and such an important one, and given that many people have had no reason in the past to examine the matter, it is we think, going to take a bit more time. In some countries, like Australia, constitutional commissions have been in existence for ten years."

- RBG News/NewstalkZB

Published in National
Tuesday, 03 December 2013 14:39

Parliament quarrel over broadband

In an unprecedented move all the parties in Parliament - from Act to Mana - have ganged up on National to block it overruling the Commerce Commission's decision to lower broadband pricing.

Dr Bryce Edwards, Politics lecturer from the University of Otago chats with Andrew Urquhart about the implications of this move.

Published in Mornings
Friday, 15 November 2013 13:59

AWOL MPs face Pay Cuts

Money-NZMPs who are absent from Parliament without good reason, now face a heftier cut to their pay.

Parliament's passed legislation reforming the way politicians are paid, and that includes the penalties they face if they don't turn up to work.

After three days they face losing point two percent of their salary, for every day they're absent.

It's a substantially stiffer fine then the nominal amount that used to kick in, after an MP had been AWOL for nine days.

Green MP Metiria Turei says Parliament must also address inequity between MPs' pay rises, and what low-paid workers get.

She says it's unfair that MPs can set the minimum wage and change work conditions, but not stop or review their own pay hikes.

- RBG NEWS/Newstalk ZB

Published in National
Tuesday, 17 September 2013 11:34

Parker to take Labour deputy role

David Parker_mp_croppedLabour Leader David Cunliffe has announced the first steps in his new party line up in parliament.

In a surprise announcement this morning Cunliffe recommended David Parker as his deputy leader over Grant Robertson, who was expected to take the role.

Robertson will instead replace Trevor Mallard as shadow leader of the house. 

In other developments both Grant Robinson and Shane Jones have been offered senior finance positions.

Labour MPs are now discussing the new line-up and will vote on the roles.

-Newstalk ZB

Published in National
Tuesday, 17 September 2013 07:40

David Cunliffe faces first two hurdles today

David CunliffeDavid Cunliffe faces two hurdles today as he meets his caucus for the first time since becoming their leader.

He'll be recommending a deputy leader to his colleagues and then he'll face off against John Key in the debating chamber.

It's highly likely that Mr Cunliffe will want Grant Robertson - who was also David Shearer's deputy - as his deputy considering that the leadership vote showed he was much more popular with MPs than the new leader.

The bigger test for Mr Cunliffe is his shadow Cabinet.

If he makes the wrong choices, those who miss out can cause trouble.

That lineup will be announced next week.

Newstalk ZB / RBG News

Published in National
Friday, 06 September 2013 10:55

Maori Party seeks apology from Labour over MTS

Maori party_logoThe Maori Party's reacted furiously to questioning by Labour about the process used to select a new boss for Maori Television.

MP Clare Curran has raised issues about the employment process for candidate Paora Maxwell, alleging he's been handpicked by his friend, chairwoman Georgina te Heuheu.

But Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell says, Ms Curran is interfering with the process and unfairly disadvantaging an applicant.

Mr Flavell's raised concerns about the allegations being made in Parliament, where MPs are privileged and can make statements they can't make outside the House.

He wants Ms Curran to apologise.

- RBG NEWS/Newstalk ZB


Published in National
Friday, 23 August 2013 19:49

Shine TV Headlines - 23 August 2013

ShineTV headlines


Davina William presents today's news, including the names of possible Labour leadership challengers; high rates of workplace drug use; Air New Zealand redundancies; and demands for UN inspectors to be granted access to the sites of chemical attacks in Syria.

From the RBG News Centre for Shine TV.

Published in National
Thursday, 22 August 2013 19:06

Shine TV Headlines - 22 August 2013

ShineTV headlines

Cameron Eagel presents today's news, including the resignation of Labour leader, David Shearer; accusations of a chemical warfare massacre in Syria; victory again for Team New Zealand in San Francisco; Kevin Rudd's promise to ban donations from big tobacco companies, and White Island makes Lonely Planet's 'hot' list.

From the RBG News Centre for Shine TV.

Published in National
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