Kiwi expats get their say in Scottish future

  • 17/09/2014

New Zealand is home to around 26,000 Scottish-born residents - but when it comes to the future of their homeland, none of them will get a vote in the upcoming referendum.

In Scotland, however, voting is open to anyone living there, regardless of where they were born - that means around 3000 Kiwi expats will get to have their say.

"I'm thinking I'm going to go no," says Tauranga-born expat Wayne Nally. "I think there's too many unanswered questions for it to be a yes vote".

For Kat Angus it's years of unanswered demands for Westminster to give more powers to Scottish parliament that has her favouring independence. She moved to Scotland from Lower Hutt five years ago and feels it's only fair she has a say in the country's future.

"I think the people who are actually living here and spending money here and really invested in Scotland's future are the ones that are voting - and I feel a bit bad for the Scots who are living in New Zealand who really want to vote but they're not living here anymore and if they had a general election they probably wouldn't vote here either," says Ms Angus.

Some expats, however, just want to stay out of it.

"I do intend to return to New Zealand at some point, so for that reason I don't actually see it as my place to vote in the referendum for Scotland's future," says Clint Betteridge.

Campaigning is continuing in the country’s streets with the latest polls putting ‘no’ supporters ahead by just 4 percent, and tension is at boiling point.

"Everyone's involved in it and I've never seen anything like that before," says Ms Angus. "So I think it's quite exciting time to live here but it's also, I kind of want it to be over so everyone calms down a bit and it becomes a bit less intense with all the debates."

British Labour Party leader Ed Miliband probably wished the debate was less tense today too, when he was ambushed by 'yes' supporters in an Edinburgh shopping mall - he joined with prime minister David Cameron to outline stronger powers for Scotland if the union stays together.

3 News

source: newshub archive