Trying to keep their arguments dry

Dunedin North electorate candidates take heed of a warning from Phil Somerville (left, holding a...
Dunedin North electorate candidates take heed of a warning from Phil Somerville (left, holding a water-pistol) to keep their answers to the point at a forum held in a packed Opoho Presbyterian Church yesterday. Watching on (from left) are Jeremy Noble,...
Photos by Jane Dawber.
Photos by Jane Dawber.

Dunedin North election candidates put their party policies on the line at a political forum held at the Opoho Presbyterian Church last evening, undeterred by the threat of a supersoaking.

A large audience crammed into the church to listen to the eight electoral candidates pitch their policies under the watchful eye of a forum convener wielding a colourful water-pistol.

Otago Daily Times editorial manager Phil Somerville chaired the forum and kept the clock ticking during the timed responses of candidates Jeremy Noble (Democrats for Social Credit), David Clark (Labour), Michael Woodhouse (National), Alex Kruize (Greens), Pete George (United), Julian Crawford (Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party), Guy McCallum (Act New Zealand) and Victor Billot (Alliance).

Asset sales, "strong, stable, and sensitive" leadership and addressing the growing poverty divide in New Zealand were among the main party policies expounded at the election forum, while boosting the economy, creating more jobs and lowering unemployment - and also improving Dunedin's "voice" in Wellington - were other contenders.

Dunedin North will have a new electorate MP once the votes are counted on Saturday, given the retirement of incumbent Pete Hodgson.

Dunedin North candidates Michael Woodhouse and Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei are both list MPs and should make it back to Parliament based on current polling.

Ms Turei was unable to take part in last night's forum because of a scheduling clash with a television interview planned for this morning.



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