Samoa ImmigrationSecondary school Samoa Immigration
During a groundbreaking lawsuit, the Privy Council decided that most Western Samoans had the right to reside in New Zealand. New Zealand's New Zealand administration, which seeks to manage Samoan immigration, has reached a settlement with Western Samoa. Samoan citizens already in New Zealand were permitted to stay, but prospective emigrants were subjected to similar limitations and rates for Tongans and Fijians.
Authorization from the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna M?tauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any reuse of this work.
The Samoans deprived of immigration and civil liberties
The Samoans are among those most affected by immigration barriers and point of entry in New Zealand. In fact, the Samoans were confronted with a twofold challenge, as 100,000 of them were deprived of their nationality under the NZ Civenship ("Western Samoa") Act of 1982. These laws, passed by the Muldoon National Party regime, have been part of a lamentable 70-year history of dealing with the Samoan population in New Zealand.
Despite strong protests at the end of March 2003, for example, and later on the end of March 2003, the law remained in effect, with protests by the Samoans themselves in Wellington, Christchurch and Samoa demanding its abolition. Samoans (and their descendants), who disappeared civic liberties, were confronted with enemy Labour government as well as those of their own states.
In 1914 NZ raided Samoa and was the country's Colonies for the next five years. New Zealand remained the ruler of Samoa and other Pacific lands formerly governed by New Zealand after the war. In the 1970s, for example, the New Zealand government pretended to be generously donating to the Pacific.
However, at the same epoch, for every buck of help that the Commonwealth of New Zealand Far East lands recieved, they were losing $3. 74 in commerce with that state. It also had little effect on the expansion of export from the Islands to New Zealand. In the 1970' there were also massive attacks on the Pauline Islands "overstayers" in New Zealand and large-scale deportation.
Helen Clark apologized to the Samoans in 2002 for the crime perpetrated against them under New Zealanders and for the roundups of the 70s. Responding to the 2003 Samoan march to restore Samoan civil liberties, Clark and her Samoan Ethnic Affairs Secretary, Chris Carter, emphasized how much they "appreciate" the Samoan contributions to New Zealand and the Labour Party.
They claim, however, that a great deal of fluid has been flowing under the bridges since 1982 and nothing can be done to turn this law around! Although she has disguised herself as "friends" of "ethnic communities", Labour's real track-record from the moment she was established is one of the campaigns for a racial immigration policy when she is out of power and its implementation when she is in power.
Established in 1916, Labour quickly began to advocate the "White New Zealand" immigration regime that was then developing by liberals and reformists. The Labour MEPs called on the trade unionists to take over the politics of "white New Zealand" and in the 1920 immigration restrictions law debate in Parliament, the Labour MEP stood up for a "white New Zealand" and for the inflexible restrictions on immigration to New Zealand by those whose skins were not known.
At that time it was mainly Asians, especially Chineses, who wanted to keep away the "socialist" workers party and the more open forms of capitalism. It was in the seventies that Labour had discarded most of his pretense and pretense of socialism, so that his attack on "fake" migrant workers went together with his attack on trade unionism and the working classes in general.
The Labor administration of Norm Kirk and Bill Rowling began a raid against the Pacific Islanders in March 1974, with roundups of Tongan houses in Auckland. The Pacific Islanders were needed to address the labor shortages during the early 1970s period of rapid growth of the post-WW2 economy.
There were only 7,000 Pacific Islanders in New Zealand before World War II, but this figure had risen to 40,000 by 1971 and increased at a rapid rate. As Pacific immigration was still subject to strict checks in the 1960', Pacific Islanders often came with visitor visas and then stayed "in excess" to get work.
Workers and the authorities turned a blank cheek during the booming years. Nevertheless, immigration from the Pacific never increased by more than 15 per cent of all immigration in one year. With the end of the upswing and the beginning of the downturn, the New Zealand working classes now stopped immigration, especially from the Pacific.
The Labour Party's roundups made it clear to the general population that the Pacific Islanders were a "problem", paving the way for the more radical actions of Muldoon's National Party, which came to power in November 1975 on a stage of scapegoat trade union, Pacific Islanders and solomothers for the capitalist slump into caution.
In the new administration, the" overstayers" authorities asked for an application to the Ministry of Labour during an apology. Unsatisfied with this, the regime then began large-scale spot tests on the roads of those who appeared a little tanned and conducted new patrols of muggings. Thousands more Pacific Islanders had to be deported.
From 1977 to 1982 more Pacific Islanders emigrated from New Zealand than had immigrated. However, the Pacific Island part of New Zealand's populace was still over 100,000 and now the New Zealand administration was facing a serious threat to its racial immigration policy. Falema'i Lesa, a Samoan who was sentenced and exported as an'overstayer' in 1979, has brought a case before the Secret Council in London.
Their case was on the basis that the NZ Civenship Act of 1949 had identified Western Samians who had been borne before 1 January 1949 as NZ nationals. The Privy Council made its decision on 19 July 1982, confirming Lesa's appointment. In principle, she found that consecutive New Zealand, Labour and National administrations had acted unlawfully by deporting the Samoans and generally refusing them the nationality privileges to which they were granted under the 1949 law.
When the Council decided, there were over 200 Samoans in New Zealand's tribunals who were deported as so-called ªoverstayers. The atrocity of the islanders' anti-Pacific immigration policy became clear again two clearer. New Zealand reacted to the verdict by issuing an almost across-the-board visa banning order for New Zealand from Samoa, while new laws were ready to abolish the Samoan citizens' attainments.
Muldoon and the West Samoa administration concluded a new contract in Apia on 22 August. As a counterpart for improving the situation of about 40,000 Samoans in New Zealand, the civil liberties of 100,000 Samoans would be abolished. They have been said to the West Samoa administration that they agree to the conditions or face the repercussions.
In view of the blatant racial character of the Muldoon position and the fact that the Samoans, like other Pacific Islanders, were predominantly Labour followers, one could have at least anticipated some criticisms from the Labour Party, albeit quite docile. Quite the opposite, Labour sent his second-in-command, St. David Lange, with Muldoon to Apia to support his extortion of the Samoan state.
Whilst the protesters in West Samoa and New Zealand took to the street - about 8,000 men and women walked through Apia on August 30 - Lange attacks the Geheimrat verdict as a "dream" and praises Muldoon's "conciliatory" attitude. As Samoans were protesting Labour's backing for Muldoon, they were blamed by Labour leadership for "bigotry"!
On August 24, 1982, Muldoon passed a new law that removed the nationality of 100,000 Samoans - the 1982 New Zealand (West Samoa) Cases. Helen Clark, then a new Labour MEP, was among those who spoke out against the law. "However, most Labour MEPs did vote for the new racial law.
In contrast to 1982, it was now in a situation to abolish this law. This made them even harder than Muldoon, who was at least sincere in his animosity towards Samoans and other Pacific Islanders. It was able to collect some low-cost brownies points by taking in some fugitives that the Howard administration kept out of Australia.
However, in the Samoan case it is less simple to conceal the striking and discriminating character of marginalisation. Also it is important to point out here that it is not only, or even necessarily first and foremost, because the Samoans are tanned, but because they are poverty. Immigration control in New Zealand has focused more on prosperity than color since the 1980' reform of the markets.
This is in the interests of all employees to combat this type of immigration checks. As the more dominant groups can exercise free labor mobility and split laborers into social, racial or ethnical lineages, the less strong are all labor. Thus, for example, the dominant intelligentsia can manage the salaries and living standards of the laborers as a whole by turning off and on Pacific and other immigration, dependent on the state of the capitalist system.
Freedom of move for employees and the organization of employees of all kinds in politically and militantly organised trade union organisations unite us at a stage at which we can efficiently struggle to extend the best possible terms to all of them. On the one side, it avoids the system distracting people' s awareness by making Pacific Island or other immigrant labourers the scapegoat for the capitalist-induced issues.
We should repeal the 1982 law, but we must also reject all forms of immigration control by capitalists. There must be free mobility of labour and there must be solidarities between the labourers here and the foreign labourers, especially those suppressed by the imperialists. Asylum seekers and migrants coming to New Zealand should all be able to benefit from the civil liberties of the people, whether they come from Samoa, the UK, Africa, Latin America, Asia or elsewhere.
There are a number of feedbacks for a report on the effects on the Samoans in New Zealand on Elijah Tauamiti's diary, here.