What governance model do you want to see Norfolk Island adopt for her future growth and prosperity? (1 vote per person only, make it count).

54 Comments

  1. Full independence as first option.
    Second option free association with NZ but Norfolk is able to handle our own foreign policy
    Third option is free association with Australia but with Norfolk handling our own foreign policy
    Integration with Australia is a flat out NO!

    1. I think that full independence is the most desired option if it could be made to work. If there were good people who could provide expertise and direction I would welcome it. 2nd choice Free Association with NZ. (much better track record with islands they administer than Australia) 3rd Choice free association with Australia (but that’s still not a good option in my opinion) Complete takeover by Australia? No way – dress up the politicians in Canberra as poker machines I say and we know the end of that story. In my opinion, the treatment of Norfolk Island has been nothing short of disgusting. Of course, we are all Australians now aren’t we? We are Australians residing on Norfolk Island and not Norfolk Islanders anymore – this is Australia’s view. Stripping a place of their identity piece by piece is not my idea of paradise. I was born in Australia. Shame on them!! I made no secret of my views when the Brits came here and I’m still saying it. It’s okay to disagree with me – that’s democracy and a democratic process is what we need. Not a faux democracy or a sham consultation. Norfolk Island is unique and should not be treated like a one size fits all garment. Good on you for setting up the quiz.

      1. Author

        It’s great to hear peoples thoughts, and you’re quite correct: “It’s okay to disagree with me – that’s democracy and a democratic process is what we need. Not a faux democracy or a sham consultation.”…we couldn’t have said it better. Thank you for voting and engaging with the process.

  2. Ozstralia has done its dash and shown their true colours.

    1. I fully agree with Tim Brown.
      1st option full independence, 2nd option free association with NZ.
      You guys need to be free of Australia.

  3. After the treatment and total disregard for Norfolk Islanders and Norfolk as our home, then I vote for full independence as the Australian Government has shown that they can NOT be trusted to act in our best interest.
    If we had to be dependant on a larger country then I’d prefer to have discussions with New Zealand over Australia.

  4. New zealand would be more beneficial than Australia to Norfolk Island.

  5. Firstly full independence
    Secondly free association with NZ with foreign policy held by our government, NO n NIL free association with OZ as they have shown total disregard for the right full owners of NLK.

  6. We’re not financially stable enough to gain full independence. My preferred vote. Not capable of defending our territory without big brother. Changing over to NZ would involve a change in our whole economic strategy and currency. Unfortunately we are looking at decades of rebuilding thanks to the Australian government.

    1. I agree after much thinking in terms of defence etc, so a free association would be a far better outlook for the short to medium term however we are in the Pacific n therefore more discussions with our island partners could also be beneficial!

  7. Free Association with Australia. I think we should choose a battle we can win AND compromising is at the heart of all political success.

  8. My first preference would be full independence, but I’m not sure how we could maintain or manage that due to the havoc the Aust Govt has imposed on us.
    Interested in talks with NZ, but that would cause a lot of unstability again until things were in place. I just don’t think NI could cope unless bucket loads of financial help was available.
    I believe free assc with Aus it may have to be.

  9. Nor happy bout de answer but I guess it would need to be Free Association with Australia.
    But would be interested to hear wathing NZ
    gut fe tull.

  10. Australia’s mismanagement and flagrant disregard for the Island and our culture rules it out of having any controlling say in our future.

  11. The Australian government has shown its hand, assistance comes at a cost. Military support etc will be no different. Do we need to make the same mistakes again?
    Free association with New Zealand, geographically and culturally a coutry much closer to Norfolk, is a country with a proven track record of supporting its South Pacific partners, not dictating to them.
    It would be a tough choice with numerous difficulties, but choosing the hard road will ultimately get Norfolk back on track. It’s not like Norfolk Islanders are shy of hard work during tough times anyway.

  12. Norfolk Island should return to the form of government it had before 2015 but Australia should provide all the services it provides to the ACT and the NT. Norfolk Islanders should pay Income Tax to Australia.
    NI should chose which Australian laws should extend to NI.

  13. Iam a N Z er and connected by family to NI. I don’t think a free assoc with NZ would be accepted by our Govt and also we have no direct air connection to NI. To come and visit is a 2 day and expensive hassle via Australia so we are somewhat ‘cut off’ these days. My feeling is that a negotiated assoc with Aus might have to be the answer.

    1. Air Chathams now have direct flights

  14. Thanks for taking this issue forward

  15. Free Association with Australia is probably the most practical choice, but they would need to take a few tips from New Zealand about showing respect for the rights, culture and values of the indigenous people of Norfolk Island

  16. Norfolk has a Polynesian heritage from its Tahitian roots and the only regional power with any understanding of and empathy for Polynesia is New Zealand. Hence Norfolk should be aligned with New Zealand and enjoy similar rights as Samoa, Tonga, Nuie, etc (healthcare, legal, education, etc). Australia has shown its true colours in the way it has mismanaged all its Pacific and Indian Ocean territories, including Norfolk. It’s time to cut the ties.

  17. We can all see the damage Australia have done to Norfolk

  18. Determining our future can start right now. No country in the world is truly independent but we should have the right to enter into regional partnerships for things such as health and education, and forums as well as access development assistance from whoever we like. Free association is essentially independence and sovereignty so I would be happy with that. The regional council should be taking the first steps by appointing and dismissing people who are working contrary to what the prople here want. At the end of the day Norfolk is the home of the Pitcairn descendants and those long term residents who hold similar values. Independence isn’t a scary thing, it’s exciting and let’s not forgot that Australia is obliged to support us as we transition to a model of governance of our choosing.

  19. The Australian Government continues to lie to and about Norfolk Islanders. There was, and is, no majority support for the takeover. The last administrator misled the minister in stating there was majority support for perverted political purposes, and his paycheck at the end of the month.

    A royal commission is demanded to expose the level of the corruption, lies and propaganda the taxpayer has been funding in Canberra’s annexation of Norfolk Island.

  20. Free Association with Australia is the most practical choice but the ongoing deceipt (DIRD exposure under FOI), gross mismanagement, and blanket refusal to acknowledge failure (Administrators ongoing repeated “Commonwealth themes”) don’t lend themselves to even wanting this. Interestingly there are twice the number voting for free association with NZ vs Australia. Speaks volumes.

  21. To go with NZ is perhaps a good dream as the OZ gov’t will never let Norfolk go especially now that they have got their “hands” on it and are running it as they dictate through you “elected” council.
    The Norfolk of old has gone which is a crying shame but you have good people fighting for your independence and may they have success.

  22. After the damage done to Norfolk by the idiots in Canberra I don’t want nothing to do with them!!!!

  23. Not being from Norfolk, some might say my comments are invalid, but I’ll state them anyway.
    Firstly, as an Aussie I am ashamed at the way the Govt has treated Norfolk Islanders. The whole process has been little better than a “land grab” and I hope that the process can be reversed in future by pressure from the UN.
    Secondly, I think some Islanders are overly concerned with reliance on Australia for defence. Defence against whom? I think the chances of NI being overrun by a hostile force is vanishingly small.
    Thirdly, the current lack of direct flights to NZ would make an association with them very difficult.
    Fourthly, the biggest problem I see for the future of NI is the drain of young people away to Australia and other countries, leaving an elderly population. If independence could be restored, incentives could be put in place to reverse this drift.

    1. Author

      Hi Tom, your comments are valid, and thank you for sharing them. Only correction would be your third point; a direct NZ flight is now run by Air Chathams every Friday from Auckland to Norfolk return. Again, thanks for your insights, we believe a variety of views is important so we can hear from different perspectives.

      1. Thank you for the correction; I’m glad to learn about it.

  24. Better to take distance from your past and build a new life with new companionship.
    Regards and I wish to all of you success in your new future.
    Philippe

  25. I think full indepence is required so we can see what’s on the table before any decisions are made by the people for the people

  26. I am actually little ashamed to say I was born in Australia. These politicians are Australian and don’t give a damn about us. I am and just like my daughters, proud Norfolk islanders. Rianna was born here and Khloe was born in New Zealand, didn’t need Australia then and still don’t.

  27. Much respect for the voice of Norfolk Island!
    My hope is for the youth to speak for the future generations and their voice be supported by all.
    As First Nation woman of Githabul country I have been brought to this beautiful sacred rock to be an advocate for the spirit of the land and Cultural Lore. I call to people of Norfolk to stand for truth and biodiversity for future generations to sustain the environment. It doesn’t matter who is governing, as free association is our ability to respond to the need for evolution as Human Sovereignty. Peace and thank you for this opportunity People for democracy. Much Respect

  28. Requesting some aid as yorle did pre 2015 is NOT an agreement to be taken over. All of you have the right to vote in local issues and a governance that is on island and continue yorles culture. All Norfolk Islanders are custodians of paradise and deserve to be acknowledged as a distinct people, culture, language and community. Stand strong and good luck.

  29. I agree with a number of posts here that the practical outcome is Free Association with Australia, for a number of reasons:
    1. Free association with NZ needs approval from the NZ Government, but also the NZ people. There is a cost burden in providing this association and whilst NZ do provide this option for other Pacific Islands, they also have very visible and large populations (often much larger than the home country) that input to the NZ economy. Justification is therefore relatively simple. I suspect the Norfolk diaspora in NZ is also very large, but it’s not visible.
    2. Australia will fight tooth and nail to prevent this happening, primarily through back-channels, political lobbying and underhand dealing (eg. NZ, if you accept this, we will double down on the return of unacceptable immigrants via the Visa Cancellation Act.). There are no doubt a lot more factors they can bring to play here as well.
    3. From a practical perspective, it’s the (relatively) easy road and far less disruptive.

    Keep in mind that Free Association means free, but someone has your back (at east they’re supposed to…). Push comes to shove, it will be our choice to change, and because of that, I reckon Free Assoc with NZ is a good choice

    Summing it up:
    I think Free Association is the best outcome (independent with backup and something the UN can readily support).
    I think Free Association with NZ, based on their record, will be the better outcome for Norfolk (there are negative aspects to NZ as well, but weighing up pro’s and con’s it does seem a simple choice)
    And, finally, I think if we end up with Free Assoc with Australia, but they know we prefer to be associated with NZ, may just keep them a bit more honest (we can hope right?).

    Love to all

  30. Australia has not shown the respect and common decency the people of Norfolk Island deserve!

  31. First, we need the right to form an elected government who has the support of the whole community. Then we need to determine our own definition of ‘free association’ and what we offer in return for financial support and requested advice.
    We have lost control of how many and who can come to live on Norfolk, and the threats to our carefully husbanded environment are greater than at any time in the past.
    It is tempting to look to NZ with its much better history of cooperation and support of territories, not to mention its admirable current foreign policy, but we have to plan for many years to come, and to have unbreakable ties to any neighbour for short term gains is risky .

  32. Long term you will need to build a partnership with Oz.
    Full independence is great, but Oz needs to be there to support NI – not run it.
    If it doesn’t work out, then call on NZ.

  33. No matter what happens realistically full independence isn’t a viable long term option for a small island with a small population. Small Pacific States are already starting to fall under the financial grip of China because they are unable to sustain themselves without taking Chinese aid money, sadly the first step to being taken over by China, definitely the worst of all evils. Perhaps better the devil you know.

    Free association maybe the best option, but to agree to that there should be conditions, including: re-establishment of the NI Assembly to the same level of governance as the ACT and NT; like the states the right of NI to appoint the Commonwealth Administrator; and most importantly NI to have dedicated representation in the Federal Senate/House of Reps to ensure NI citizens have a voice in parliament.

    For your consideration.

    1. Good point. Infact I’m wondering if the takeover by Australia wasn’t prompted by the spectre of China offering cheap loans to NI to “help out”?

  34. Norfolk Islanders do not have the right to doubt our capacity to do what needs to be done to protect our island and develop our families and community: this is a task we were born to undertake and it is for the current generations to continue the legacy left by our ancestors for those yet to arrive. Independence does not mean unsupported – to me it means having the freedom to trust and agree where we will receive any needed assistance and the mutually respectful terms.

  35. If any Australian politician, DIRD, or any of our past 2 and present Administrators can tell me what is their agenda with Norfolk is then maybe I can make a decision but the way it is there is to much lies and deceit for me to do so. I feel we need a big brother but one that will listen and work with the Islanders, not just ignore our recommendations and do as their so called expert consultants recommend. And admit that they’re the ones failing and dragging Norfolk down.
    Lets hope we can work together for our future generations.

  36. Australias attitude demonstrated at the recent Pacific Islands Forum in Tuvalu, its previous bugging of the Timor Leste Parliament to obtain advantage and now the treatment of the whistleblower of that event clearly demonstrates that it has zero ethical standards. Add to this its non democratic takeover of Norfolk Island has to leave one wondering about its continued membership of the UN.

  37. The past performance from the Australian government has been pitiful and has been destructive and disruptive to NI.

    NI are quite capable of running their island. Governing NI should be given back to NI people with Australia doing the right thing and providing defence when and where needed in direct consultation with NI. The lies and deceit seen by Australian government officials has got to cease. Open honest and direct consultation should be done from this point onwards. Get rid of any incompetent people and form a new NI local government voted in and elected BY the NI people. Their should remain a governing arm of NI to consist of Elders for advice.
    If Australia can’t do the right thing then NI should start talks with NZ.

    Just my opinion but I would love to see management handed completely back to NI who are more than competent to move forward for a self governing styled management. In saying that I strongly feel that Australia should give compensation to NI for the damage that they, in their mismanagement have caused to NI. Compensation in terms of allowing NI local government to rebuild their roads and economy to get back on their feet so NI is better placed to build their future economy.

    As always much respect to NI and their people.

  38. Thank you for the opportunity to express my views on
    the future direction on N.I.
    Having been forced down the path of Australian Governments demands I can’t see how the Island can move forward other than to adopt the “Free Association’s “ model with Australia.That being said the Norfolk Island residents should demand a far better representation in the Australian Parliament that simply “tacked”on to the A C T Federal seat of Bean given the Islanders special and unique place in history given limited influence by the representation of pure numbers on the island.You are the custodians of Norfolk Island an integral part of history and should be respected and treated that way.

  39. Full independence…Norfolk ran in the black for a fair while with no hand outs given….and once we gain independence we claim back what is rightfully ours…the fishing liscences/rights alone would be close to financially support the island…especially with the back pay that is owed

  40. Full Independence would be preferable after the way Australia has thrust so many restrictions on Norfolk Island creating so much extra expense that they know we cant afford, so would run us deeper into debt, which we managed to keep out of for years, something Australia cant do. As Darrin states above, the fishing licences etc as I wrote to MP Jamie Briggs 10 December 2014 suggesting the monies collected by Australia be returned to its rightful owners, Norfolk Island, but naturally his response was “The Government does not collect royalties from commercial fishing operations”…….. we have heard otherwise from those willing to help us.

  41. The problem being Australia will not release Norfolk for full independence it is much to strategic a position geographically . We have what we have now and will have to live with it as much as we dislike it. All we can do is stick together and not let them take away our traditions and culture. WE ARE THE ONES TO CARRY ON THAT TRADITION NO ONE CAN TAKE IT FROM US

  42. Our neighbours throughout the Pacific are aware of the disrespect shown by the Australian Government toward the people of Norfolk Island since 2015 when it announced that self government would be revoked by the Commonwealth.

    In 2019 the Australian Government is making efforts to rekindle friendships with Pacific nations in consideration of the strategic importance of those nations. The Prime Minister has stated that Australia wants the Pacific to be “independent, stable and sovereign” and has argued for “trust, respect and understanding” between nations.

    How Australia treats the people of Norfolk Island will serve as a guide to the sincerity of those words.

  43. Practically I think Norfolk Island is too small to be fully independent. But the UN is quite clear that non-self governing territories should have the right to self determination and this has wrongly been taken away from Norfolk. Australia doesn’t seem to want to understand the island’s unique history and culture. NZ has a great track record of working with Pacific islands including in free association. I note the Governor of Pitcairn resides in NZ so that is also a nice connection given the common history with Pitcairn.

  44. Australia let’s doen their own people. Lord Howe island is a mess and getting worse. Self governance is essential… government workers have no care for somewhere they have blown into, keep them out.

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