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No Give from Government on Arapawa Goats

Independent MP Gordon Copeland today expressed his deep disappointment
that the Minister of Conservation has, once again, ruled out the
possibility of the Arapawa goat herd being allowed to remain on
conservation land. He was responding to a letter received this week from
Minister, Steve Chadwick.

"This letter does not follow through on the tenor of the discussions
which I held with the Minister on 9 April 2008," said Mr Copeland.

"At that stage the Minister indicated her willingness to work with the
Minister of Agriculture Jim Anderton, who has a portfolio responsibility
for rare breeds, with a view of developing a 'whole of Government'
solution to the ongoing national and international controversy
concerning the preservation of this unique breed of beautiful goats."

"The inflexibility now displayed by the Minister is simply
incomprehensible. It is possible that the Arapawa goats have descended
directly from a breeding pair left on the island by Captain James Cook.
They are therefore a beautiful part of New Zealand's natural history.

"In these circumstances I am baffled at the intransitence which has been
shown by the Department of Conservation around this issue. Indeed I
believe their attitude is actually contrary to the Conservation Act
itself which defines 'conservation' as 'the preservation and protection
of natural and historic resources for the purpose of maintaining their
intrinsic values, providing for their appreciation and recreational
enjoyment by the public, and safe guarding the options of future
generations.' ".

"They seem to disregard entirely the reality that this breed of goats is
a natural and historic resource worthy of protecting and safe guarding
for future generations. I find this attitude both arrogant and ignorant
in the extreme.

"It is also deeply disappointing that the Minister has chosen to convey
her decision to me in such blunt terms just eight days after the death
of Betty Rowe who devoted some 30 years of her life to providing a
sanctuary for these goats. The simple fact of the matter is that there
is plenty of room within the DoC estate on Arapawa Island both to safe
guard this breed of goats for future generations and to preserve the
biodiversity of the regenerating flora which, in any event, is
completely fenced off from the grazing area of the goats."


Gordon Copeland                        
Independent MP
Phone:  04 4706998
Mobile: 027 4726998     


























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