Politics | ACT Party

'Where's the evidence?' - political analyst scoffs at Seymour's claim on why Kiwis are leaving NZ

Political analyst Dr Lara Greaves has scoffed at David Seymour’s suggestion that Kiwis are leaving this country because of “Te Tiriti-centric” policies from the government.

From 2022 to 2023, 1600 Kiwis left New Zealand for greener pastures such as across the ditch. And the Act leader has put it down to a number of factors: the rise in crime, worker safety, worker pay and “the government’s obsession of interpreting Te Tiriti as a document of division".

"It's making a lot of people uncomfortable because there are no successful societies where you have different roles in society based on your ancestry," he told teaomā today. "But in nearly every area of policy we are told that's what the Treaty means. I don't think it does.

“They’ll never say it it's why [they are leaving New Zealand] but that’s what they’re doing.”

But Greaves told teaomā there's no evidence for Seymour's claims.

“Surely someone would admit somewhere but we haven’t seen any evidence of this.

“About one in 10 New Zealanders say that they agree or strongly agree that the Treaty should be removed from law… It’s not a big group of people but there’s no evidence to suggest that they are leaving Aotearoa [because of this]. Then I would imagine that most of the public would go ‘Go on, then.’”

While she says economic factors tend to drive Kiwis away from home for better opportunities, Greaves says that Act’s MO is picking up on the “decline” of Aotearoa to further their vote reach during election year.

“[Act] may genuinely believe it but it does also seem to be a political strategy, and some people do agree with them on that.”

Public Interest Journalism