The Instigator
Con (against)
6 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
0 Points

The New Zealand Constituion is legally valid.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/11/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 505 times Debate No: 75098
Debate Rounds (3)
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Votes (1)




Looking for someone willing to argue that the New Zealand Constitution is indeed legally valid in regards to the letter of law.

The New Zealand Constitution will be defined as:
New Zealand Constitution Act 1852 (15 & 16 Vict. c. 72) - Passed by the United Kingdom Parliament.
New Zealand Constitution Amendment Act 1947
New Zealand Constitution Act 1986
The Statute of Westminster
Bill of Rights

All sections of Law type shall be permitted (International Law, Contract Law or what ever you feel helps your argument.

This debate will be 3 rounds long, first round is for acceptance.


I accept the challenge and I will be debating "Pro"
Debate Round No. 1


Thanks, here is to a good debate.

New Zealand does not have a written constitution like the US, various Acts of Parliament make up what is to be the Constitutional Authority of New Zealand. Up until the New Zealand Constitution Act of 1986, no such law had been passed in New Zealand, only in Westminster, the Parliament of the United Kingdom. I will be arguing that the Constitutional Authority of which all New Zealand gains it's power, is not only illegitimate, but illegal under International Law.

1) In 1920 New Zealand become a signatory to the Treaty of Versailles following WW1, and became a member of the League of Nations, forerunner to the United Nations. Prior and during WW1 New Zealand was a colony/dominion of the United Kingdom. It is upon signing the Treaty of Versailles, the peace treaty that end WW1, that New Zealand gained it's Independence from the United Kingdom, as only a Sovereign Nation, meaning not a colony, could sign an International Treaty of Peace.

2) Article XX of the Covenant of the League of Nations required the extinguishment of any colonial laws applying to a member state pre-Sovereignty. This included the New Zealand Constitution Act 1852 (15 & 16 Vict. c. 72) which was only ever passed in the United Kingdom, under this Article the New Zealand Government ceased to have any lawful authority within New Zealand.

3) The United Kingdom was aware, that signing of Treaty of Versailles would grant her colonies legal independence as evidence by British Prime Minister Lloyds speach at the 1921 Imperial Conference in which he stated

"In recognition of their service and achievements during the war, the British Dominions have now been accepted fully into the comity of the nations of the whole world. They are signatories to the Treaty of Versailles and all other treaties of peace.

"They are members of the Assembly of the League of Nations, and their representatives have already attended meetings of the League. In other words, they have achieved full national status and they now stand beside the United Kingdom as equal partners in the dignities and responsibilities of the British Commonwealth.

"If there are any means by which that status can be rendered even more clear to their own communities and to the world at large, we shall be glad to have them put forward."

And also the Belfour Declaration of 1926.

3) No break of legal continuity has occurred. There has not been a point in which the laws and those passed on the authority of the Parliament of the Untied Kingdom have ceased to have an effect in New Zealand, citing Hong Kong transfer of Sovereignty from Britain, on June 30th 1997 British Law, British Police, the British Monarchy all had lawful authority in Hong Kong, on July 1st, all of those things still existed but they had no jurisdiction within Hong Kong. This has not happened within New Zealand.

4) No referendum has been held in which the New Zealand people have freely and willingly adopted a new, or ratified the old constitution.

5) A government can not be sovereign only people can. The New Zealand Government can not continue to exercise constitutional authority after independence as Sovereignty was granted to the people of New Zealand not to the government, without record of referendum, or approval of a written constitution the New Zealand people have granted to government no power to exist let along act.

Based on these 5 points alone, I believe it becomes clear that the New Zealand government has no lawful authority to act within the borders of New Zealand, that they continue to illegal exercise British and De Facto British Law within New Zealand in violation of International Law.



siphosethuzazela99 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


For one reason or another my opponent has failed to post a rebuttal to my arguments, so I will therefore post my conclusion.

New Zealand gained her independence in 1920, when it signed the Treaty of Versailles and joined the league of nations. As a condition of joining the League of Nations, the New Zealand Constitution Act of 1852 an Act of the British Parliament ceased to have any lawful effect on New Zealand. Since this time, no referendums have been held to uphold the old, or ratify a new constitution. New Zealand has failed at every step to provide a lawful constitution.

In conclusion, I believe I have shown above that the New Zealand Government has no lawful authority in New Zealand and I yield the balance of my time.


siphosethuzazela99 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by lannan13 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture.