30 Aug 2014

Colin Craig scores 'win for free speech'

11:26 am on 30 August 2014

The lawyer acting for the Conservative Party says a backdown by the Electoral Commission over time for party political broadcasts is a win for freedom of speech.

Colin Craig

Colin Craig Photo: CONSERVATIVE PARTY

The Conservatives withdrew their application for a judicial review because the commission yesterday agreed to reallocate extra on-air time created when the Alliance Party pulled out of the election among minor parties.

The party now has an extra ten seconds for their closing address on Radio New Zealand and Television New Zealand, and and additional $667.

Party leader Colin Craig's lawyer Mai Chen said electoral speech is a form of free speech enshrined in the Bill of Rights and the Broadcasting Act.

She said it is critical for parties to use all the time available is used.

Ms Chen argued the Conservatives should get a bigger share of the allocation of time and money for party political broadcasts than the ACT Party.

Mr Craig had applied for the judicial review and said he was happy with the decision.

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