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Manihiki mood peaceful 

A spirit of togetherness is evident across Manihiki showing that politics is not always about ‘us and them’, says Democratic Party candidate Apii Piho.  Speaking from his constituency today, where he has just settled in for the ride to 17 November, the Cabinet Minister reports that the mood in Manihiki is one of peace and harmony.

“It’s a real feeling of harmony here.  The people are not separating themselves because of the campaign but continuing to mix and be together,” said Piho.

“There is no segregation of this camp and that camp – we’re not like that.”

The election candidate said he would spend his time meeting people and talking to everyone, in the coming days.  Piho said the constituents were happy to see him and that he was willing to listen to their views.  He feels the people know who they’re supporting and the approach to campaigning is not to force things upon them.



 Smiley reaches out for Team Demo 


Democratic Party Candidate for Ruaau, William “Smiley” Heather, has hopped over to Mangaia this week to help the Demo team reach out to the voters in the smaller communities.  From Mangaia, he will wing his way to Atiu on what will be a ‘whistle-stop tour’ of five constituencies: Ivirua, Oneroa, Tamarua, Teenui and Areora.

Heather is in a 15 member party delegation, which departed early Wednesday with one target in mind:  a clean sweep of the two islands’ five available seats.

True to the style of the new-look leadership, the travel programme has been developed to provide the Democratic Party supporters on Mangaia and Atiu with a sharp inspirational boost in the last few weeks of campaigning. 

Smiley Heather is accompanying Democratic Party Leader Robert Wigmore, candidates for Matavera and Akaoa, Cassey Eggelton and Tapi Taio with members of the executive, a four piece band and TV news media, on this trip. 

 Rasmussen casts his vote 


Deputy Leader of the Democratic Party, Wilkie Rasmussen, cast his vote earlier this week in preparation for his departure to his constituency of Penrhyn in the far North.  Rasmussen is expected to depart Rarotonga next week.

According to Chief Electoral Officer, Taggy Tangimetua, the polling place located at Level One of the New Zealand High Commission Building in Avarua is open from 9am to 1pm, Monday to Friday.  The last date for advance polling is Tuesday 16 November. 

Constituents who are traveling overseas can call into the polling place in on weekday mornings to cast their vote for both their constituency member and for the referendum.  



Last Updated on Monday, 01 November 2010 08:23
Demos Promise Prosperity

The Democratic Party launched it’s manifesto of policies to a lunch hour crowd at the New Hope Church in the heart of Avarua on Tuesday.  The professional execution of the launch showed the Democratic Party had learnt much from their four year term in government.

Jim Marurai, Prime Minister provided a valediction , and noted the rigors of political life and the sacrifices members have made to move forward, to what he believes is a credible and stable platform to seize the opportunities for the prosperity of the nation ahead.

He then introduced Robert Wigmore, the Leader of the Democratic Party who summarized the Democratic Party policies it plans to implement as Government.  These policies, outlined in a very easy to read manifesto covered the social, governance, economic, & infrastructure sectors.  The outer islands also featured in a section on policies specifically to deal with issues unique to those islands.

The manifesto can be downloaded for free from www.democookislands.com or can be purchased for $20- from members of the Democratic Party Executive. 

Last Updated on Monday, 01 November 2010 08:12
Taking Care of Business

The Democratic Party launched their manifesto to a full house at the New Hope Church in Avarua on Tuesday.  The economic sector policies in the glossy covered manifesto could provide some much needed relief to businesses who have found it tough going in the three years 2007-2009 as a result of the global downturn.

The manifesto promises to introduce the Commerce Commission to prevent anti-competitive and unfair business activities.  This, the Party believes will support a reduction in the cost of finance, telecommunications, transportation & energy.  Other policies to encourage businesses include support for local production, with an evaluation of the impact of tariff removals. 

There are fiscal policies including raising the tax free threshold and removing secondary income taxes for low income earners.  This will put more money in the pockets of individuals to spend, save or reinvest in business.  The manifesto also promises tax free zones in the outer islands, and tax rebates on sustainable energy investments and home grown technologies.

Sean Willis, Democratic Party President is satisfied that the Party has appropriately weighed the costs of all the promises against the benefits expected and that the policies will convert into real growth and prosperity for the nation.  Willis says, “it helps to have a leader who is a successful businessman.” 

As an after though Willis adds, “he gets it, when our team was compiling and analyzing the policies Robert Wigmore was 100% on board.  These are his ideas.  It’s an exciting time and satisfying to be a part of the solution.”  
Last Updated on Monday, 01 November 2010 08:11
Our Future. NOW

Sean Willis, Democratic Party President explained the new logo and slogan at the Manifesto Launch held at the New Hope Church on Tuesday. 

“The whole process of designing this logo was inspiring.  Our mapu created the logo on their computers and they were emailing it amongst themselves and constantly communicating.  They got the logo draft design without even meeting face to face.  I was blown away.”

“I love it that our young people are bringing their creativity to our campaign.  It’s great to see them actively involved.  For too long politics has been the domain of our elders, but we can see that working with our young ones is firing up our seasoned Democratic Party politicians.”

The Democratic Party election logo is a symbol of the unity of traditional and modern culture.  The logo represents the rings of time, inana’í (past), i teia ra (present), apopo (future).  The Tikitiki Tangata is a traditional symbol of unity, family and working together.  These values demonstrate that everyone has something to contribute, regardless of age, gender or ability.

Willis adds, “the Democratic Party is working for Our Future.  Right NOW.”


Last Updated on Monday, 01 November 2010 08:15
Manifesto promotes security over disruption

The Democratic Party is confident that voters will want assurances of the stability of continuity rather than the risk of the unknown when it comes to who has the proven abilities to govern. 

Party President Sean Willis says the thrust of their policy blueprint for the next term has the security of a team with an established, realistic platform – one that combines the assets of administration experience with equal strengths in private enterprise.

“Our team has integrated the policy frameworks very successfully, and really sharpened up its act to translate these accomplishments into new benefits,” Willis said today, in support of the Democratic Party Manifesto for the 2010 General Election.

“The country simply can’t afford to be disrupted during these tough times,” he added.  “We are on track with gaining huge advantages by continuing the progress we’ve already made, rather than allowing ourselves to be put at risk and set back.”      

The Cook Islands will be forced all the way back to ‘square one’ with an unknown, risky bunch that’s had no real record of having been tried and tested, says Willis.  There’s enough blame to go around there for leadership squabbles and parliamentary performance.

“But we’ve been tested through and through and put ourselves out there to change and improve the way we govern, according to the people’s wishes.” 

The President says his team is not in the business of looking backwards or trying to ‘sweet talk’ anyone.  The Democratic Party has its critics, sometimes even said to be its own worst enemy, but the team has proven its mettle with fundamental changes.  These changes include a virtual overhaul of the party from the top down.  This has allowed the party to persevere its Election Agenda and Party Manifesto with a greater deal of comfort and consultancy.

“It’s fair to say that the Democratic Party has written a new ‘playbook’ for the future.  We want people to know we are within reach of these benefits, now.  We’ve turned the page and ready to move forward with a new chapter.”

The Democratic Party has now put its record on the line with a manifesto that speaks to the government’s accomplishments over the past four years.  New initiatives have been added only after careful analysis, particularly in terms of their financial implications. 

“That’s what gives our blueprint credibility,” says Willis.  “It’s based on real achievements – and we’ve listed them so that the people can scrutinize us closely.”

Last Updated on Friday, 15 October 2010 03:02
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