Open Letter to Political Parties - suggested policy/legislation action items for this year’s election

Despite our global reputation, research shows that over 33% of New Zealand’s citizens believe corruption is widespread in government and business. Multiple reports conclude that we are not doing enough.

As we approach the elections, political parties and their leaders need to commit to fighting corruption and promoting transparency in all levels of governance. New Zealand deserves a government that is honest, open, and accountable to its citizens. 

We are urging parties to support this vision by taking concrete policy actions.

“Promises to Policy to Action” details the urgent action needed as shown below and is available to download.

Promises to Policy to Action

Promises to Policy to Action is the 2023 call to action for political parties from Transparency International New Zealand. We encourage parties to include these concrete public policy actions that support three broad outcomes.

  1. Stop flows of dirty money within and in/out of New Zealand
  • Establish a single agency to address public and private financial crime in New Zealand.
  • Take a more coordinated response to criminal fraud.
  • Create a public register of beneficial controllers of companies and trusts in New Zealand.
  • Toughen up on New Zealand’s approach to foreign bribery.
  • Review trade agreements to ensure consistency with New Zealand’s commitment to international agreements and mechanisms.
  • Promote corruption risk assessments for New Zealand businesses.
  1. Improve political Integrity and enhance democracy
  • Enhance Standing Orders to limit the ability of Ministers to ignore or direct Select Committee advice.
  • Reduce the use of urgency and short consultation periods by both Parliament and the public sector which limits citizen engagement and undermines the Select Committee process.
  • Respond urgently to disinformation that is aimed at corrupting our democracy.
  • Make political party funding and lobbying more transparent.
  • Empower the Electoral Commission to run local body elections.
  • Establish a Public Service Commission-like role for local government.
  • Promote proactive engagement with groups that feel left out of decision-making and develop deliberative democracy for policy development.
  1. Protect public resources and secure integrity in the public and private sectors
  • Ensure both financial and regulatory impact statements are met for new legislation.
  • Ensure co-governance models are workable and understood. Learn from models already in place in local government. Elevate the Māori voice in decision-making.
  • Improve transparency and integrity of procurement at central and local government levels.
  • Fully review the OIA and LGOIMA to be ready for the changing information age.
  • Reduce the use of legislative clauses that exempt legislation from the OIA.
  • Monitor and report on the success of whistle-blowing legislation and initiatives.
  • Step up enforcement to reduce labour exploitation in New Zealand and in supply chains.

Download  “Promises to Policy to Action”.

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