The past week of political announcements showed the Labour-led Government is still out of ideas and isn’t up to the job it was elected to do, Deputy Leader of the Opposition, Paula Bennett says.
“If 2019 is Labour’s year of delivery, as the Prime Minister called it, then why is her Government continually kicking decisions down the road? She should apologise to New Zealanders for this inaction.
“Last week was a master class in making announcements without actually announcing anything. The Government simply deferred any real decisions or actions to a later date.
“It started with the disappointing interim report on the Health and Disability System review. It was 300-plus pages and cost taxpayers more than $30,000 per page, but didn’t contain a single recommendation. It’s basically a $9.6 million paper weight.
“Then we finally got the KiwiBuild reset only to discover it was a complete retreat from Labour’s election promises, with no new initiatives to speed up the delivery of houses.
“All we got from the Government was an admission of defeat, with no targets for new housing and the foreshadowing of schemes like rent-to-buy.
“There was also no guarantee this would be delivered before the election, despite it being in Labour’s confidence and supply deal with the Greens. Where’s the urgency?
“The Government’s Freshwater Discussion Document mirrored its approach to Resource Management Act reform. Labour knows it won’t get consensus on these issues with its coalition partners so it’s pushing the decision making out beyond the next election.
“It’s extraordinary that after nine years in Opposition and two in Government, Labour has done so little work on its policies that it needs to engage in seemingly never-ending consultation rather actual delivery.
“The year of delivery has been a con. The only thing New Zealanders will remember about 2019 is that it was Labour’s year of discussion, and not much else.”