Maiden speeches pre­sented

South Canterbury Herald - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - DAISY HUD­SON

Ran­gi­tata’s two lo­cal MPs have fo­cussed on their own jour­neys to pol­i­tics, and the is­sues fac­ing the elec­torate, in their first speeches in Par­lia­ment.

Ran­gi­tata MP An­drew Fal­loon de­liv­ered his maiden speech in Par­lia­ment on Tues­day af­ter­noon, nearly a week after Labour list MP Jo Lux­ton pre­sented hers.

Lux­ton told the House the Ran­gi­tata elec­torate - ‘‘the agri­cul­tural hub of the South Is­land, if not New Zealand ‘‘- faced sev­eral chal­lenges which she called ‘‘some very dif­fer­ent to other parts of the coun­try, some not so dif­fer­ent’’.

‘‘One of the big chal­lenges is the dif­fi­culty find­ing peo­ple to fill the nu­mer­ous jobs avail­able there,’’ Lux­ton said.

That was echoed in Fal­loon’s speech, with the new MP say­ing ‘‘we sim­ply don’t have enough peo­ple to do the jobs that are avail­able’’.

How­ever, Fal­loon said he was ‘‘in­cred­i­bly ner­vous’’ about talk of cut­ting mi­grant num­bers, say­ing it would stall growth in the re­gions.

Fal­loon also spoke about New Zealand’s sui­cide rate.

‘‘When 600 of our fel­low Ki­wis are dy­ing at their own hands we have to say this is un­ac­cept­able,’’ he said.

He fin­ished his speech by thank­ing his wife Rose, his fam­ily, and his col­leagues, as well as his fel­low Ran­gi­tata can­di­dates for a ‘‘good na­tured cam­paign’’.

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