Too many promises from naive Government say National MPs
New Zealand is paying the price for an inexperienced government too eager to make promises, said National Party MPs visiting Gisborne last week.
Michael Woodhouse, Dr Shane Reti, Nicky Wagner, members of the party’s health caucus, and Louise Upston, Maureen Pugh, Jo Hayes, Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi and Dan Bidois, members of their social policy caucus, visited Manaaki Tairawhiti, EIT Tairawhiti, Hauora Tairawhiti, Gisborne Volunteer Centre and Beetham Healthcare.
The MPs were on their last regional visit of the year, as part of the policy-developing process for the 2020 General Election.
Mr Woodhouse said the private sector strikes prevalent over the past 12 months could not only be attributed to a centre-left government being in power, but because the Government was inexperienced and made many promises.
That was why the Government hired so many consultants, said Mrs Wagner.
“They had not expected to win the election and had not done the work (in developing policy).’’
John Key and Steven Joyce had stressed certain maxims to the previous National Party Government, she said.
‘‘You cannot promise anything you cannot deliver’’ and ‘‘does it make the boat go faster?’’
The Government’s expenditure of $2 billion on free tertiary education “did not make the boat go faster’’.
There would not be more students or better quality education just because students had more money in their pockets, said Mrs Wagner.
The MPs have visited Northland, South Auckland, Hutt Valley, Wellington, West Coast and Christchurch with the regions being chosen because of their disparate nature.
Mrs Upston said they went to the regions to listen to the community.
Community organisations were not hesitant to speak up.
“People at the coal face know the hurdles they are facing,’’ said Mrs Pugh.
“You can’t just sit in Wellington.”
Mrs Upston said EIT had closed the gap in achievement and qualifications between Maori and non-Maori.
Mr Bidois praised EIT’s Maori and Pacific trade-training academy and how it engaged with employers.
Mr Woodhouse said he was impressed with the dialysis unit and the new CT scanner at Gisborne Hospital.
There was not only new technology but it made for better outcomes for materially-unwell people who might not have to leave the district for another hospital.
The CT scanner made earlier intervention possible.
“That’s really what we want to be doing.’’