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06:00pm - 07:00pm
Ed Sheeran

Free speech covers right wing 'wahanui'
Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneaux

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National MP Nuk Kōrako says New Zealanders are unlikely to be swayed by the extremism promoted by a pair of Canadian speakers.

Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux, whose targets include Muslim, immigrants and feminism, called off their trip after Auckland mayor Phil Goff denied them the use of council facilities.

It’s being framed as a free speech issue, and Mr Kōrako says the threshold for denying people the use of public buildings should be very high.

"We’re a very robust democracy. We don't get swayed easily I believe by extreme-ism so if people come with strong views, let them speak. We can then respond to those arguments but to just sort of close them down by not letting them come to New Zealand or letting them use council-owned buildings, I think it may be a bridge too far," he says.

Mr Kōrako says his word for people like Southern and Molyneux would be 'wahanui' or big mouths.

Phil Goff says he didn’t stop the pair speaking, and questioned whether MPs would have allowed them to hold their meeting in parliament’s banqueting hall.


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