The Student's Guide to Everything

The Student's Guide to Everything: university student and graduate life from a New Zealand perspective

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I'm a marketing communications professional, writer and blogger. I can't live without the internet, I love to travel and I'm a photography nut.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

"Bill and Ben" the Flowerpot Men... I mean political party

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I was surprised to find the political party "Bill and Ben" on my NZ electoral ballot today (I'm voting from overseas). Turns out "Bill and Ben" is a joke party created by the hosts of TV3's programme Pulp Sport, Jamie Lineham (aka "Bill") and Ben Boyce. It's actually surprisingly easy to create your own political party in NZ. According to the NZ Electoral Commission, all you need are:
  • a name that is not likely to cause offence or confusion, which refers to a title or honour, or is too long;
  • 500 or more current financial members eligible to enrol as electors;
  • and an auditor.

Being registered requires a party to, among other things: have rules providing for the democratic participation of members in candidate selection, make annual returns of donations, make annual declarations of having at least 500 current financial members and the intent to contest elections, and make party election expense declarations.

I'm not sure whether the Bill and Ben party will be getting any voter donations this year, as they already turned down electoral campaign funding so as not to waste taxpayers' money. But should you ever want to create your own political party, now you know how!


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