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March 19, 2018 | by  | in Politics | [ssba]

The Party Line

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern recently announced that the Government will be sending around $20 million to Tonga and Samoa to aid their recovery in the wake of Cyclone Gita. Is this a good use of Government funds? What does New Zealand gain from supporting its Pacific neighbours?


Why shouldn’t the idea of selflessness extend to our government? Jacinda Ardern and the Labour Party campaigned on the image of a more kind and compassionate government and that is what we are seeing in their actions. Instead of the scrutiny we should be praising how quickly aid was given.

Let’s not ignore the fact that we are seeing the consequences of our awful rates of pollution in the Pacific. If you want to argue that government aid should be compensation for previous acts, then surely this is enough of a reason. Providing financial aid is the least we can do.

So heck yes this is a good use of Government funds and we don’t need to gain anything from helping out our Pacific brothers and sisters.

Finally, the Young Nats need better inspiration for their memes.


The National Party has a proud record of providing and supporting international aid. From 2012 to 2017 the National government spent over 3 billion dollars in foreign aid, 50% of which went to Pacific nations. The Young Nats strongly support our being a good global citizen and providing assistance to those in our own neighbourhood, and abroad. However, it’s important to emphasize that our foreign aid comes from New Zealand taxpayer dollars, and therefore we must ensure accountability and transparency when given, to anyone. This ensures aid is spent inline with MFAT policy and investment priorities to create the biggest positive impact possible and truly reach those we are trying to support.

-Grahame Woods

Young Greens

As part of the Government’s delegation to the Pacific Island last week, Green Minister the Honourable James Shaw was present to observe the devastating impacts that climate change is having on Pacific Communities. There is no doubt that the recent cyclones that have ravaged the pacific are caused by climate change, through increased global temperatures both in the ocean and in the atmosphere.

Climate Change is more than an environmental issue, it is almost exclusively affecting the most vulnerable communities at present, therefore it’s seen as a justice issue for the Greens as well. If we are to truly tackle Climate Change and the effects it’s having, we need to start with supporting the communities whose livelihoods are being washed away. Solving the greatest issue of our time will take collaboration with all, and the Pacific hold a wealth of knowledge that is crucial to limiting its effects.

Supporting Samoa and Tonga with $10m each, is the very least the government could do to support those who have lost everything. Providing aid to the Pacific is imperative to our global interests, tackling climate change and helping the most vulnerable.

He waka eke noa – a waka on which we all embark.

-Max Tweedie

Act on Campus

We support the aid given to our neighbour nations. Cyclone Gita caused widespread destruction and it’s good that we are in a position to help. In terms of aid New Zealand is the leading country in the south pacific, therefore aid should be focussed and directed into the south pacific. It is vital that we continue our close partnership with Tonga and Samoa as through it we gain trade and support from them when our country is in times of need.

-James Allan


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