Whakatau 2023 | Treaty

Treaty referendum: Expect civil unrest worse than Springbok tour protest, says Willie Jackson

Willie Jackson has issued a stark warning about the potential backlash Act’s proposed Treaty referendum will likely generate should it go ahead.

Speaking on Q+A on Sunday morning, the Labour MP told host Jack Tame that New Zealand would see civil unrest five to ten times worse than the 1981 Springbok tour protest.

“... I’m nervous about what might be coming, you know in terms of this nonsensical Treaty referendum, let me tell you now Jack, if they try and push that through it’ll be 81 Springbok Tour, civil unrest times five, times ten,” Jackson said. “I don’t think we’d be able to handle it or control it when I hear from our people.”

“Surely they aren’t going to do that after we used the system, after we went through the courts, after Māori mortgaged homes, and their lives in terms of utilising the system and got victories, and now all of a sudden they’re going to be able to manage it in this country - and I hope Mr Luxon and Winston show a bit of common sense over this,” Jackson told Q+A.