Vision NZ leader wants to accelerate citizenship process for Pasifika

October 12, 2020

Vision NZ leader Hannah Tamaki. Photo/RNZ

The leader of the Vision NZ party wants to accelerate the process for Pasifika to become New Zealand citizens.

The party plans to cut down the waiting time for gaining citizenship in half, from 10 years to five years for Pasifika.

Speaking on Pacific Breakfast, Hannah Tamaki says Pacific people have contributed to New Zealand’s growth for a long time.

“I just think that the time that the Pacific people have to wait to become citizens or residents is too long. They’ve contributed to our nation for decades and decades and yet, it seems like well, I can understand Maori are not accepted into a lot of positions, so of course Pasifika people are treated very similar.”

Tamaki says Pasifika and Maori are the backbone of the country, but despite the hard work of these groups, they’re always stopped from reaching their potential.

“It seems to me like brown is down, brown get out of town and yet in actual fact, we are building, we are the backbone. We are the people that don’t mind doing the labouring jobs and working our way up the chain to the top. But it seems like a lot of the time, we don’t even get to the top.”

Tamaki also criticised an error by the Electoral Commission, which saw Vision NZ left off the initial ballot for the Port Waikato electorate. The mistake has since been rectified.​

Vision NZ’s leader says the people responsible for putting the ballot together should come into question.

“I think if it was Labour or National, they’ll probably be a more public outcry, but because it’s Vision New Zealand, it seems to be like ‘they’ll be alright, sweet as’," says Hannah Tamaki.

“To me, it’s not acceptable. The printer needs to be pulled into question, the person doing the proofing needs to be pulled in. I just think that under-handed dirty politics is not a way for a democratic right.”