05/09/2016

Call for Dr. Smith’s resignation.

 

The scaremongering and misrepresentation of the Auckland Unitary council’s long term plan shows that Dr. Nick Smith
is deliberately twisting and misrepresenting the facts, and raising fears that important medical research will be banned.
Yet he knows any such concern is false. [1]

The AUP [2] expressly excludes medical and veterinary applications stating

“Potential GMO activities of relevance include GM food crops, trees, grasses, animals and pharma crops, but, exclude
research within contained laboratories involving GMOs, medical applications involving the manufacture and use of
GM products…” (p.2: 1.1)

In seeking to mislead the public, the Minister is following the lead of Federated Farmers of New Zealand. Federated
Farmers challenged the right of councils, who govern under the Resource Management Act (RMA), to place
precautionary GE wording in their plans, in the Environment Court. The challenge was not upheld. They then appealed
the Environment Court’s decision to the High Court, which has now dismissed the appeal. [3]

The Minister's anti-democratic panicked response of introducing a new law that expressly prohibits councils to consider
environmental and land use protections around GMO’s, shows a cynical contempt for due process and local democracy.

It is an indictment on Dr. Smith and shows that he is not working for the good of the country but is using his powers
and influence to pursue an agenda outside of his responsibilities as a Minister.

This serious breach of conduct transgresses his responsibilities as a minister. He is apparently unable to avoid his
conflicts of interest around the GE issue. This terrible situation leads us to call for his resignation as a
Minister of the Crown.

References:

[1] Govt to review councils GMO decision http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11703046

[2] Auckland Unitary Plan -Genetically Modified Organisms http://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/EN/planspoliciesprojects/plansstrategies/unitaryplan/Documents/Section32report/2.49%20Genetically%20Modified%20Organisms%20v2%202013-09-09.pdf

[3] CIV-2015-488-0064 [2016] NZHC 2036

http://www.gefree.org.nz/assets/pdf/CIV2015-488-64-31-08-2016-JUDG.pdf

ENDS:

Claire Bleakley 06 3089842 /027 348 6731

Jon Carapiet 0210507681

Jon Muller 0274 794195

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