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Hold back the diggers John - Green Party

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

John Key and SkyCity Casino would be wise to hold back the diggers as the passing of the Pokie- for-Convention Centre deal into law won’t prevent a change in Government from putting the brakes on the deal, the Green Party said today.

"The Green Party has fought this deal from the start and we won’t stop now," Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei said.

"John Key relied on the vote of an MP who is on trial in relation to donations he received from the casino, and an MP whose electorate chairman gave misleading evidence about the casino to a select committee, in order to pass this deal.

"And John Key relied on the vacant Labour seat in Christchurch to skew the results in his favour.

"The SkyCity deal, and the tactics involved in getting it passed, sum up everything that is wrong with the National Government: Today it enshrined into law a dirty backroom deal designed to benefit the rich, powerful and greedy, at the expense everyone else.

"This Bill gives SkyCity special rights and privileges that ordinary citizens don’t get. And it was formed over a dinner that ordinary kiwis would never get to have with the Prime Minister.

"Naming it the International Convention Centre Bill is a smokescreen for what this Bill really does which is to give SkyCity a way around the Gambling Act so that it can make more money off problem gambling.

"If Auckland needs a convention centre it should get one that is not attached to a public health menace and which is paid for honestly. It’s not right for it to be paid for by the misery of thousands of families, businesses and 6500 children who officials estimate will be harmed by this deal.

"The Greens will campaign right up to the next election against this deal. In Government we will act quickly. We have not committed to uphold the contract or the compensation and we will introduce much tougher rules in casinos and pokie bars.

"If I was John Key I would hold back the diggers but not hold my breath as there are many other opportunities yet for people to put a stop to this morally corrupt deal. Not the least of which is the next election," Mrs Turei said.

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