Legislation in Retrospect

I'm Watching You

I'm Watching You

Legislation should never be applied in retrospect. 

The New Zealand government is trying to pass this into law at the moment.

Video Camera Surveillance (Temporary Measures) Bill

The part of the bill that needs to be opposed or removed relates to the retrospective application.

To retrospectively legalise the illegal activities of officials is a vote in favour of corruption.

We do need to address the use of covert surveillance, but to retrospectively apply the bill could lead to allegations of corruption of the government who are trying to bring a pre-designed outcome to a case that the government is trying to pursue through the courts.

DBHOH_BILL_11056_VideoCameraSurveillanceTemporaryM (pdf)

Part 2
Temporary continuation, and savings

Declaration of continued lawfulness 15

5 Temporary continuation of lawfulness of certain uses of video camera surveillance

  1. (1)  This section applies to the use of covert video camera surveillance as part of, or in connection with, a search, if that use—
    1. (a)  occurred prior to the coming into force of this Act; or 
    2. (b)  occurs before the close of the day that is 1 year after thedate on which this Act comes into force. 

I see this as the thin end of the wedge and sets a precedent for the government to repeat this process for other situations as well.

Any implementation of the bill should only apply to future action.

Legislation should never be applied in retrospect.

Paul S Allen


About Paul S Allen

Kiwi singer-songwriter based in Dunedin, New Zealand. Musician (Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Mandolin, Keyboard); Photographer; Poet; Thinker. I have food allergies so ask when you invite me for dinner. Lumen accipe et imperti. (receive the light and pass it on) Email me: paulusthebrit@hotmail.com

Posted on 28/09/2011, in Communication, Community, Leadership, Think and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Retrospective legislation doesn’t lead to corruption — it is corruption.

    In NZ we fail because of our so-called ‘democratic’ systems. In fact we are democratic on just the one day in every three years, when we elect our dictators for the next three. We very badly need change the system to one of accountability and responsibility, but it won’t happen. Not while the rugby is on … right?

    • Hadn’t thought of it like that, good point. Agree about the rugby, it has blinded the nation from doing anything useful or productive.
      Thanks for your comments.


  1. Pingback: Legislation in Retrospect – Update « The Waterside

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