A retired Cook Islands accountant has accused the New Zealand government of selective means testing.
This comes as thousands of Cook Islanders planning to seek New Zealand Superannuation under the new portability arrangements have been told they face dollar for dollar deductions if they are also members of the Cook Islands National Superannuation Fund.
Geoff Stoddart, who was once the head of inland revenue in the Cooks, said about 4,600 people could be affected.
He said New Zealand's Ministry of Social Development doesn't understand that the Cooks scheme is not a universal scheme like New Zealand Superannuation and to treat it as such amounts to selective means testing.
"It's a contributory scheme. It's a savings scheme. There is no government contribution to it at all. If people saved in the bank or saved in a sharemarket fund - any other form of investment would not be deducted against New Zealand Super."