Wānaka Sun       

Daniel Shand: Ideals instead of policy

Posted at 6:00am Thursday 08 Oct, 2020 | By Pat Deavoll editor@thewanakasun.co.nz

The Wānaka Sun has been profiling the electoral candidates in the upcoming election each week. Here is our final candidate.

Builders apprentice Daniel Shand is standing as an independent for the Waitaki electorate.

 Recently moved down from Wanganui to Luggate to take up the apprenticeship, he has had one other foray into politics. He ran in the local body election in Wanganui, and this whetted his appetite, he says.

 "I also think the public is losing heart or aren't that interested in politics any more," he says. "The public is a bit disenchanted with the current system, and I wanted to bring a bit of life back into it."

So why stand for the Waitaki electorate and not Wanganui?

I live down here now, and I feel like first, and foremost I'm a New Zealander so anywhere is my home.

And the people are really tough down here and they get along with each other - more so than in other areas I have lived in. This is where I want to be."

What policies are you promoting?

I've approached it very differently. I don't have policies as much as ideals. I believe in a more accurate representation of the public. I want to talk to the electorate and get to know what they want. Politicians always seem to be telling people what to do. Instead, they should listen as the representative of their electorate.

With that in mind, I have been asking people in the electorate if they feel like they are being accurately represented. Or they are being told what to do.

I have talked to people but I'm flat-out building at the moment and I don't have time to look at specific issues.

But I feel a representative is responsible for helping the public with service - that is their first duty. For example the maternity issue here in Wanaka.

A representative must also engage with the public democratically and represent their view.

Yes, I've come out of the left field. For me, it is not so much about policies as a different ideal.

Why stand as an independent?

I talked to Jacqui Dean the other day, and I asked her about the National Party. I also asked her if she had to choose between representing the electorate or the party line, what would she choose? She said the party line.

So she is unable to represent the people of the electorate properly if she feels like that. And that's the same with all the parties.

Anyone in a party is limited to representing the party line, and I don't want to do that. I want to represent the people of the electorate accurately.

It's a bit like running for Council. There everyone runs as an independent. You get to know that person, and you decide if you want them to represent you.

I want people to get to know me and decide if they want me to represent them.

What do you have to offer the Waitaki Electorate?

Honesty, an an open-door policy. My door is always open, I'm always available to listen to any issues, and I won't be limited to party ideologies.

Where do you stand on a new birthing unit for Wanaka?

That is vital for the area. At the moment I am very disappointed that this hasn't been resolved. A politician's job is to supply services to the area.

What about the water issue?

It's a complicated issue with a lot of moving parts, and it has to be resolved quite carefully. There needs to be a study done that again involves the public.

I want to make all options available.

So what is it that you are passionate about?

I'm passionate about involving the public in government decision making.

I feel strongly that the public is not appreciated and acknowledged by the government. That is my main line. I want to represent the wants of the public more.

I get a lot of questions about policy, but I am coming at it differently. I am someone you can get to know and decide if you want me to represent you.

I want to consult the public more and let them know I am available for consultation- I am not stuck to party ideology. I want decisions to be made democratically. Ideals instead of policy. I know it's very different.

What do you hope to get out of this?

I want to bring some attention to how the representative system works. The public should have more influence in government.



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