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May 16, 2011 | by  | in News | [ssba]

A new kind of Student Party

A new political party Student Party NZ has just been founded. Led by the University of Waikato’s Malcolm Matthews, they hope to give students a voice in Parliament this November.

Matthews believes over 450,000 tertiary students in New Zealand have been “grossly misrepresented” in Parliament.

“Our policies aim to improve living standards and education for all New Zealanders. We are the voice of students.”

Their main policies include keeping the interest off student loans and universal student allowance. They oppose changes to the drinking age and the recent Copyright (Infringing File Sharing) Amendment Act.

ACT on Campus President Peter McCaffrey doubts they will have much of an impact on the election.

“I think that a lot of people underestimate just how much work goes in to setting up a new party. Every election all sorts of people and individuals seem to just decide on the spur of the moment that they want to start a party.

“If they manage to register in time for the election then good for them…but I don’t see it being very likely to happen”

Students asked about Student Party NZ had varied opinions.

Victoria University student William Guzzo said they were forgetting the Government has no money.

“The Government will have the biggest-ever deficit… most of their policies involve spending lots of money.”

Otago University student Phil Brown said they didn’t have his vote, but that the party has potential.

“They need to expand on their policies, make them more in-depth and realistic.

“They need to drop some stuff like legalising cannabis so that they are taken a little bit more seriously.”

The Student Party are currently trying to reach 500 foundation members in order to be eligible for the elections in November.

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  1. Michael Horgan says:

    Student Party NZ wants to decriminalize cannabis use, not legalise. The policy has been expanded to clarify this, please see

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