Dr Muriel Newman

In the 1980s, many New Zealanders stood proudly against apartheid – the South African system of government which enabled a race-based minority to impose its rule over the majority of the population.

It is therefore ironic that many of these same people now support a separatist minority to impose its culture and political will over the majority of New Zealanders.

The authority for the tribal elite’s plan to ‘co-govern’ New Zealand comes from their claim that Maori are Treaty of Waitangi ‘partners’ with the Crown.

But this is a lie – as the former Judge and law lecturer Anthony Willy points out: “It was and is constitutionally impossible for the Crown to enter into a partnership with her subjects. She can as she did in 1840 make promises to them but by definition, the Crown is supreme, and the people are subject to her laws.”

He further explains that the legal authority for their ‘partnership’ claim – which is alleged to have come from a 1987 Court of Appeal judgement – is a fabrication, since the reference to ‘partnership’ by Justice Cooke was not part of the decision, but of the commentary which has no standing in law: “In no legal sense does this case decide that that there is a partnership between Maori and non-Maori.”

The claim of partnership is a clever political construct used by separatists to dupe the public into thinking that those with Maori ancestry have greater political and legal rights than other New Zealanders. The Treaty however, confers no such privilege. In fact, the Treaty guarantees all New Zealanders equal rights.

While common sense would indicate that the Maori supremacy goal of having an unelected and unaccountable race-based 15 percent of the population ‘co-governing’ New Zealand with 50 percent of the power is profoundly undemocratic and highly unlikely in modern-day New Zealand, under Jacinda Ardern’s Government, this indeed appears to be the direction of travel.

In 2018, desperate to hold their grip on the Maori seats, the Office of Maori-Crown Relations was established. The objective of this new agency was to enable Maori to work in “partnership” with the Crown in the post Treaty settlement era. But as a result, a radical ‘Maori worldview’ has been introduced into agencies across the State sector and it is having a disproportionate influence.

New proposals published just before Christmas to enable State control of industry-based vocational training shows just how far this radicalisation has progressed. A requirement for the new Workforce Development Councils is that half of all members must be Maori.

This contravenes established State protocol. As the former Attorney General Chris Finlayson noted a few years ago, ‘proportionality’ is necessary to avoid racial bias: “In a representative democracy, it is important to maintain approximately the same level of representation for everyone”.

By requiring 50 percent of the new Council members to be Maori, the Government is ignoring the proportionality principle and as such is in breach of section 19(1) of the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990, which guarantees New Zealanders freedom from discrimination.

Please note: These Workforce Development Council proposals are open for submissions until February 5 – details can be found 

As a result of these developments not only has the imposition of Maori cultural practices on the public escalated, but an inflammatory separatist narrative of victimisation and oppression – that denounces the ‘evils’ of colonisation and makes widespread accusations of ‘institutional racism’ – now increasingly dominates New Zealand society. 

The end result is that our highly integrated and relatively harmonious society is now being openly described as ‘racist’, ‘colonisation’ is being reinvented as ‘evil oppression’, and anyone of European origin speaking out against separatism is being framed as a ‘white supremacist’.

This is producing absurd and dangerous outcomes.

The disproportional number of Maori in prison is no longer deemed to be a consequence of their criminal offending, but the result of systemic and institutional racism within the Police Force, the Justice System, and Corrections.

Maori children are no longer being taken into State care to keep them safe from serious abuse by their parents and caregivers, but because the Ministry for Children is racist.

With the health system now also being accused of racism, patients in desperate need of surgery are no longer being prioritised on the basis of their clinical urgency, but on their ethnicity.

Furthermore, with Maori disadvantage being blamed on colonisation and institutional racism, the real causes of social deprivation, namely the breakdown of the family, educational failure, and the growth of intergenerational welfare dependency, are being ignored because they don’t fit the prevailing narrative.

Those promoting such misrepresentations know that blaming society’s problems on racism is extremely effective as a weapon of control – to close down the debate and give themselves a platform to further their own agendas.

None of this is rocket science. But these days common sense is being subjugated by those seeking to undermine equal rights and democracy. 

New Zealand has now reached a turning point. The radicals have become emboldened by Jacinda Ardern’s election success and the majority she now controls. As a result, demands for separatist policies are growing so strong that the country is indeed in danger of becoming an apartheid nation where a minority world view is increasingly used to control the majority of the population.

The education system has already fallen to the separatists, with a doctored New Zealand history due to enter the curriculum next year.
The teaching of the Maori language in schools is also well advanced – a move that the former Maori Party co-leader Marama Fox explained is essential for separatist control: “New Zealand would gradually move to its own unique form of governance, one that would abandon the Westminster model in favour of Maori customs, principles and values… The critical step… is to make the Maori language a core subject in the country’s schools… people look at things differently once they’ve acquired te reo.”

With vast sums of taxpayers’ money being ploughed into attempts to indoctrinate New Zealanders in the Maori language, the current strategy appears to be one of saturation: Maori language phrases are ever-more frequently being inserted into English communications; Maori names are increasingly used for Government initiatives and agencies; calls to replace English language road signs and place names with dual or Maori language signs is intensifying; and New Zealand is now being called “Aotearoa” so often that there is no doubt that the public is being softened up for a referendum on changing the country’s name at some stage in the not too far distant future. 

But promoting the system of political control being used by separatists to gain influence over the country and turn us into Apartheid New Zealand is madness. We should not accept it.

To make matters worse, not only are accusations of racism increasingly being used to silence opposing opinions, but some in the mainstream media are abandoning their Fourth Estate responsibilities for balance in reporting, by refusing to publish anything that could be considered critical of Maori.

A case in point is the situation where a number of community groups around the country are challenging local council decisions to introduce Maori wards without consulting their community. 

Petition rights were introduced into the Local Electoral Act by the former Labour Prime Minister Helen Clark as a democratic safeguard to protect communities from councils wanting to change the voting system to suit themselves – without first seeking a mandate from their ratepayers.

Since creating Maori wards requires a change to the voting system through the introduction of the Maori electoral roll, petition rights apply. This means that if communities can gather the support of 5 percent of voters, their councils are required to hold a binding referendum on Maori wards.

In an outrageous development, Stuff – one of the biggest media groups in the country – has not only refused petition advertising in their community newspapers, but they have also been publishing opinion pieces that falsely claim that petition rights are racist and only apply to Maori wards, when even a cursory review of the law shows they apply to all voting system changes.

How long a newspaper group can continue to exist as a consumer product when they have taken a seriously biased position on such an important issue, remains to be seen.

To make matters worse, the Minister of Local Government, Nania Mahuta has indicated that she intends abolishing Helen Clark’s petition rights because Mayors and activists are opposed to voters being able to challenge council decisions to support separatism.

But the Minister should be aware that there are legitimate and illegitimate ways for governments to abolish important constitutional rights. Since Helen Clark’s petition rights are a cornerstone of local government democracy, repealing them without undertaking a nation-wide referendum would be totally illegitimate and smack of totalitarianism.

As we look ahead and see that democracy is increasingly under threat, the question on everyone’s mind is how do we stand up to separatism?

This is a question that has also exercised this week’s NZCPR Guest Commentator, Associate Professor Jeff Fynn-Paul of Leiden University in Holland, who, as an economic historian, was so disturbed by the racist attacks on colonisation that emerged around the world last year that he wrote an opinion pieceThe Myth of the Stolen Country, for Britain’s Spectator magazine.

His article touched a nerve and went viral. After reading it, I contacted Professor Fynn-Paul to ask his views on the best way to defend democracies against separatist attack. In his commentary he makes the point that it is only when full debate is possible on all topics of serious political importance, that democracies ‘can be returned to health’:

“In the process, we have to reject social tribalism. We are one society, and everyone is an equal stakeholder. We have to return to an embrace of meritocracy, and an embrace of the institutions which created our current prosperity as a society. We have to remember that Anglophone institutions remain the very best political institutions which the world has ever created. This is objectively true across any metric you care to use. We should not be ashamed of those institutions. They are tools which, bequeathed by a few Anglophone white dudes to the modern world, are now available for everyone to use – regardless of their ethnicity or identity.   

“The left is now in grave danger of throwing out the baby of our democracy, with the bathwater of our colonial past. But our democratic institutions, and the science, and the meritocracy that support them, have to be allowed to flourish without wrong-minded opportunism based on an appropriation of history, including the history of race.    

“In New Zealand, this means that all issues surrounding Maori rights have to be open to debate. To declare them to be out of bounds is not only anti-democratic. It is totalitarianism, plain and simple.”   

We all have a responsibility to defend our democracy and fight back.

One of our readers recently shared his experience of ‘fighting back’. He was a long-standing supporter of a charity but after receiving letters heavily laced with Maori language, he questioned the appropriateness, and cancelled his financial support when no response was received.

That’s exactly as it should be in a consumer democracy. We should all exercise our choice to withdraw support. Only then will organisations get the message that their behaviour is not acceptable – they will need to heed the wake-up call if they are to survive.

On reflection, 2020 was not only the year in which a virus rampaged out of control around the world but so too did left-wing activism. With their goal of securing power and control, separatists seized on the disruption and instability caused by COVID-19 to accelerate their agenda.

Anyone who is appalled by these developments can no longer do nothing. Everyone must join in collective action and we each must do our bit to help stem the tide and defend our democracy. It is no longer enough just to be concerned – 2021 is the year in which we all need to act!


Do you believe the petition rights enabling citizens to challenge local councils when they change the voting system should remain? 


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Dr Muriel Newman

Dr Muriel Newman

Dr Muriel Newman established the New Zealand Centre for Political Research as a public policy think tank in 2005 after nine years as a Member of Parliament. A former Chamber of Commerce President, her...