ZB

Green Party's Question Time move 'unprecedented'

Author
Rosie Gordon,
Publish Date
Mon, 19 Mar 2018, 1:59pm
The Greens are giving 42 of their questions to National this year. (Photo \ Getty Images)
The Greens are giving 42 of their questions to National this year. (Photo \ Getty Images)

Green Party's Question Time move 'unprecedented'

Author
Rosie Gordon,
Publish Date
Mon, 19 Mar 2018, 1:59pm

A Green Party move to hand its parliamentary question quota to the Opposition is being called extraordinary and unprecedented.

The Greens are giving up around 42 questions this year and about 50 next year.

Co-leader James Shaw says questions are better used to hold the government to account and denies it's a move to cosy up to National.

READ MORE:
The Soap Box: Question Time should be for the Govt to defend its position

Political commentator, and former National MP, Michael Laws says it could be intended as a slap in the face for Labour and shows the relationship between the coalition parties is out is fractious.

"Question Time at parliament is just an act of ritualistic theatre. This is a small, junior, ineffective coalition partner trying to make themselves relevant.

"It must be one of the very first times in the history of New Zealand Parliament that a government party gives up a political advantage to the opposition party deliberately."

Greens co-leader James Shaw told Mike Hosking says the party has decided to do this in order to improve the quality of democracy and he hopes National will use the questions on his party as well.

"Because we are part of the executive and we need to be held to higher account than simply scripting ourselves our own questions."