Scoop | 25 July 2017
Zombie actors protest TPPA at Auckland trade office
by Real Choice
A mock zombie virus outbreak was quarantined this morning at the offices of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) in Auckland. The stunt was performed by anti-TPPA campaigning group Real Choice, as they released a demand for the NZ government to end their efforts to resurrect the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).
The agreement was signed in February 2016 amidst mass protest, but later collapsed as US President Donald Trump pulled out of the deal. The New Zealand government has since been working with the remaining 11 countries to enact the agreement without the US. Effectively, resurrecting a dead trade deal.
Actors dressed as zombies, wrangled and restrained by quarantine experts, put on a show for the employees of MFAT; intending to illustrate the absurdity of resurrecting a dead agreement that the people of New Zealand see as a threat to democracy.
Spokesperson Georgina Blackmore said “the people of New Zealand did not want this deal the first time around, and we definitely don’t want a zombie version.
When they signed it we mobilised thousands of people to shut down Auckland City in the biggest act of civil disobedience since the Springbok Tour. We’re beginning to organise again to make sure the government stop their necromancy.”
“The people of New Zealand rejected the TPPA because it was an attack on our democracy and sovereignty. It gave excessive rights to overseas corporations, threatening our affordable medicine, our ability to protect our environment and was a violation of Te Tiriti O Waitangi.
The Zombie TPPA will have identical wording, so all those reasons to stop it remain. That’s why we are demanding the government ends their zombie TPPA negotiations.” said Ms Blackmore.
“Trade Minister, Todd McClay and Prime Minister Bill English are desperately trying to make this deal happen, and frankly, it’s brainless. The Zombie TPPA leaves us open to the same threats, minus the trade benefits with the USA of the original deal. It’s time to mobilise the nation’s protest immune system against this zombie TPPA outbreak. In the lead up to the election, parties need to guarantee they will not exposing New Zealand to the Zombie TPPA, or else will need to be quarantined.”