Adviser criticises Labour's possible axing of iconic election walkabout, says it doesn't address long-term security risks

  • 21/09/2022

The Labour Party's move to consider axing the iconic election walkabout is being criticised for not actually addressing security for politicians and other members of the public.

On Tuesday, Deputy Prime Minister Grant Roberston signalled Labour's election campaign next year may not look the same as previous years amid fears of growing abuse against politicians.

"We are going to have to think about this election campaign in a slightly different way," Robertson said. "We can't let these people win so we've gotta make sure that we still campaign but we've gotta think a bit differently."

 But independent director and strategic adviser Ziena Jalil said ditching the likes of an election walkabout creates a barrier between groups, making it harder to resolve the heart of an issue.

"You're just addressing that immediate problem," she said.

Jalil told AM it's key to Aotearoa's democracy to have conversations with people whose views we don't agree with.

She said it's even more important for those conversations to be had following the growing polarisation of views over the past couple of years.

Jalil urged politicians to look at "what are the causes of this, and addressing those, rather than saying, 'Let's put more security in place.'"

Watch the full interview above.