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FORMER M.P.'S DEATH

MR. GEORGE WITTY FRIENDSHIP FOR MR. MASSEY [BY TELEGRAPH —PRESS ASSOCIATION] CHRISTCHURCH, Thursday The death has occurred of Mr. George Witty, former M.P. and M.L.C., aged So. Mr. Witty, who arrived in New Zealand from England in 1875 with 5s in his pocket and a full kit of clothing made for him by his mother, was member of Parliament for Riccarton for 23 years and a member of the Legislative Council for seven years. Although he served on as many local bodies probably as any man in New Zealand, he never experienced defeat. When he stood for Riccarton for the first time in 1902 he was successful and he held his seat continuously until 1925, when he retired from the House and began a term of seven years in the Legislative Council. Four times he refused Ministerial rank when it was offered to him during the formation of

the Mackenzie Ministry in 1912, and it says much for his sagacity that his chief reason for declining that advancement was that he felt the Ministry would not last. The Ministry fell a few mcnths after it was formed, and the Massey Government began its long term of office. Although elected as a Liberal in 1902 Mr. Witty was one of Mr. Massey's greatest admirers. He would cross swords in the House with the Reform leader in all the main party clashes, but in the lobbies he and Mr. Massey were firm friends. This friendship for Mr. Massey had an important sequel at the general election in 1922. During the campaign Mri Witty had declared himself to be an independent Liberal, and when the election resulted in the Government and the Opposition parties being returned at equal strength, Mr. Wittv crossed the floor of the House with two other Liberals and gave his support to Mr. Massey. It was only by this action that Mr. Massey was able to carry on his Government until his death a couple of years later.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/NZH19411121.2.113

Bibliographic details

FORMER M.P.'S DEATH, New Zealand Herald, Volume 78, Issue 24128, 21 November 1941

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332

FORMER M.P.'S DEATH New Zealand Herald, Volume 78, Issue 24128, 21 November 1941

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