ACT deputy leader resigns over disappointment in party's priorities
The ACT Party's deputy leader has resigned, claiming the party has shunned Asian voters.
Kenneth Wang emailed his resignation to the board on Sunday morning, shortly before the party was set to announce its official election line up.
A disgruntled Mr Wang told Newshub the party had turned its back on the Chinese community.
"[ACT] was the first political party openly and publically [who] supported new migrants, particularly Asian and Chinese, with a formal commitment".
He said the party's priorities have shifted since he joined 15 years ago.
"It's been replaced by other polices which are a priority and that's another disappointment."
Mr Wang said ACT's weakening stance on crime was another reason for his decision.
The deputy had been David Seymour's second-in-charge since 2014, but the party's leader and only current MP says Mr Wang is not irreplaceable.
"This is a guy who was in Parliament for 10 months, 15 years ago," Mr Seymour says.
"We're friends with Ken and we're grateful for what he's done for the party but ultimately, no one's indispensable and you've got to be a team player."
Mr Wang's page on the ACT website has already been removed.
ACT's list was released on Sunday afternoon, with party president Ruwan Premathilaka saying it displays the renewal of the party that has occurred over the past three years.
"Our candidates showcase talent, youth and diversity. They are committed to ACT's values of freedom and personal responsibility.
"They will fight to cut tax and red tape, expand choice in education and restore affordability to housing by reforming the Resource Management Act.
"They will welcome immigrants who embrace our values and positively contribute to New Zealand. They will provide both stability and spine to a centre-right government."
The full ACT Party list:
- David Seymour, Epsom
- Beth Houlbrooke, Rodney
- Brooke van Velden, Auckland Central
- Bhupinder Singh, Manukau East
- Stephen Berry, East Coast Bays
- Stuart Pedersen, Tauranga
- Anneka Carlson, New Plymouth
- Shan Ng, Mana
- Sam Purchas, Dunedin North
- Toni Severin, Christchurch East
- Grae O’Sullivan, Rimutaka
- Richard Evans, Kaikoura
- James McDowall, Hamilton East
- Richard Wells, New Lynn
- Michael Warren, Wellington Central
- Andi Moore, Ohariu
- Andy Parkins, Hutt South
- Colin Anderson, Whanganui
- Bruce Carley, Bay of Plenty
- Tom Corbett, Rangitata
- Brian Davidson, Selwyn
- Alan Davidson, List only
- Dan Doughty , Dunedin South
- Alex Evans, Helensville
- Paul Gilbert, Ilam
- Roger Greenslade, Wairarapa
- Robin Grieve, Whangarei
- Stuart Hawkins, Waimakariri
- Bruce Haycock, Northcote
- Paul Hufflett, Nelson
- Nick Kearney, North Shore
- Tim Kronfeld, Upper Harbour
- Michael Milne, Tamaki
- Joe Misselbrook, List only
- Craig Nelson, Northland
- Joshua Perry, List only
- Vineet Shiriwastow, Coromandel
- Satnam (Sam) Singh, Manurewa
- Anthony Smith, Hunua
- Chris Sole, Rongotai
- Neil Wilson, Rangitikei