The more I think about the proposal to allow the Government to confiscate passports from NZ citizens, the more I don’t like it.
I regard a passport as a fundamental right of any citizen, because it allows people to leave a country – also a fundamental right (if not charged with a crime).
If there are genuine security fears about a NZ citizen, then the SIS can share its concerns with overseas agencies, and individual countries can decide whether or not to allow that person to visit. But the notion of NZ citizens who have not been convicted of any crime losing their passports at the discretion of a Minister is dangerous. I would need a huge amount of convincing on why this should be supported, or is needed.
On the citizenship issues, I am somewhat favourable. I think there is some merit in not having NZ citizenship automatically given to children born here, if *neither* parent is a NZer. The status quo provides a huge incentive to people to become illegal overstayers and have kids in NZ, and this is being abused a lot. Also if two German tourists (for example) happen to have a baby while holidaying here, it is hard to see why their child is a NZer.
It is essential though that no child ever be born stateless, so NZ citizenship should only be with-held if one is 100% sure that the child will have citizenship in another country.