Forget Co-governance fear mongering – 3 Waters must protect NZ from water privatisation or be cancelled

From the beginning for me, 3 Waters needed to do 3 things.

1 – Provide fresh clean water to everyone in NZ.

2 – Ensure water can never be privatised.

3 – Stop foreign company water bottling.

It’s questionable 3 Waters can do the first, it’s moot if it can do the 3rd, yet it seems to ensure water could be privatised!

Queenstown Lakes District councillor, Niki Gladding, has given a brutal assessment of how the technical changes in the legislation are open to an interpretation where our water could be privatised.

I urge the Government’s immediate attention to this.

Because there’s no way we can allow any mechanism that makes potentially privatising our water a possibility!

In my thinking, we should just Nationalise the Water and see Co-Governance as a brake peddle to any future privatisation.

I don’t see the Co-Governance issue as the great bogeyman that the Right do. I see it as a simple extension of the Waitangi Tribunal ruling into water rights that was sparked by Key selling 49% of our Hydro assets.

That ruling said Māori water rights existed and that it was up to the Crown and Māori to negotiate that.

Using the existing co-governance infrastructure developed by ACT and National, 3 Waters is the expression of that entire process.

If ACT, the Taxpayers Union and National all dog whistle long enough on this and win the election, they’ll cancel 3 Waters which will lead to an immediate challenge in the Waitangi Tribunal where Māoridom will argue they negotiated a deal, as the Court had stated and then the Crown dumped it. The Court will rule in Māoridom;’s favour and Luxon will face his own Helen Clark moment and just try to confiscate the water legally.

This of course will spark one hell of a violent protest response.

So before we get there, how about we get this right and entrench Public ownership around our water. Seize it under the Public Works Act if you need, but just get it done, because we can’t in good faith accept an outcome where privatisation is easier.

Explain the need for co-governance to provide the essential hand break to stop white rich people selling our water off to corporations.


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