Tuesday, March 28, 2023

‘Debate on issues, not people’: Advice for city council election candidates

Local body election candidates will get to know what lies ahead of them in terms of campaigning and if they get elected.

Two information evenings will be held on Wednesday, 22 June and Thursday, 30 June, to advise those standing for Christchurch City Council and its community boards in the October election.

Lian Dalziel, who stood down after three terms as mayor, said his message to the new candidates was to put debate and dissent above all else.

“Debate on issues, not people,” she said.

“To use the rugby analogy, play ball, not player.”

Dalziel also said that voters need to do the same.

“When people get elected to a position, support them.

“Don’t be afraid to challenge them, but debate issues, not personalities,” she said.

Halswell ward councilor Anne Galloway, who also hasn’t stood up in October, said it’s important to ask a lot of questions and understand that there are no easy solutions.

“There are a lot of layers to local government decision making,” Galloway said.

“Thinking that a councilor could walk in and go ‘Yeah, we want to change that’ … unfortunately, no, it doesn’t work that way,” she said.

Dalziel and Galloway said being mayor and city councilor has been an incredible experience.

“There is nothing I can think of that is more rewarding than representing the city where you were born and raised,” said Dalziel.

“There are so many elements to it that I will miss.”

Galloway said: “I have greatly enjoyed what I have experienced as a councillor, it has been an enormous privilege to learn about the city and its people, to connect with its communities, to invest myself in it.”

  • City Council Candidate Information will be held on Wednesday, June 22, at 4.30 pm, and Thursday, June 30, at 6 pm at the Civic Offices, Hereford St.
  • The nominations of the candidates will open on July 15 and close on August 12. Voting will begin on September 16 and will close on October 8, election day.

-by Rowan Sinclair

Nation World News Desk
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