Labour-Greens: Jacinda Ardern, Kelvin Davis, James Shaw and Marama Davidson to ink co-operation deal

Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, deputy leader Kelvin Davis and Green co-leaders James Shaw and Marama Davidson have signed the Labour-Greens cooperation agreement.

Ardern said it was “fantastic” to have the agreement formalised.

The signing took place in the Prime Minister’s boardroom on the ninth floor of the Beehive this morning.

EARLIER

The leaders of Labour and the Greens are meeting this morning to sign their parties’ co-operation agreement.

Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, deputy leader Kelvin Davis and Green co-leaders James Shaw and Marama Davidson will do the signing on level 9 of the Beehive in the PM’s boardroom.

Last night the Green Party members voted to accept a deal with the Labour Party which will see Shaw and Davidson become ministers outside of Cabinet.

Shaw will be the Minister of Climate Change and Associate Minister for the Environment (Biodiversity).

Davidson will become the Minister for the Prevention of Family and Sexual Violence and Associate Minister of Housing (Homelessness).

The Green co-leaders will have the ability to note where Government policy within their portfolios differs from Green Party. There is also the standard agree-to-disagree provision available.

They may staunchly oppose the Government on other matters.

After close to four hours of negotiations between key Green Party delegates, 84 per cent of voters backed the deal offered by Ardern.

Yesterday Ardern unveiled the proposed deal in its entirety half an hour after the delegate call began – she told media it was important that the deal was made public for “transparency” reasons.

The Prime Minister also signalled that she will be looking to work with Opposition parties on a number of areas of cross-party co-operation, such as extending the parliamentary term and the abolishing of the “coat-tailing” rules.

The Greens will also have the chairmanship and deputy chairmanship of two select committee – expected to the transport and environment, with former ministers Eugenie Sage and Julie Anne Genter tipped for the roles.

Ardern said that she didn’t consider offering the Greens a coalition agreement – similar to the one Labour offered NZ First after the 2017 election.

Nor have the Greens agreed to support Labour on confidence and supply.

“The Green Party agrees to support the Labour Government by not opposing votes on matters of confidence and supply for the full term of this Parliament,” the agreement says.

That means they are not allowed to vote against the Government when passing the Budget.

They are, however, allowed to abstain from a vote such as that.

In total, 136 Green Party delegates voted on the deal.

Some 114 voted for, 17 voted against and five did not vote – that means the majority was 84 per cent.

As well as the ministerial posts, Labour has promised to work with the Greens in a number of “areas of co-operation”.

This includes achieving the purpose and goals of the Zero Carbon Act, protecting our environment and biodiversity and improving child wellbeing.

Ardern will name her new Cabinet on Monday and ministers will be sworn in on Friday afternoon.

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