In a wordy op-ed piece in today’s Herald, Judith Collins once again sidesteps the questions posed to her in Parliament last week on pre-trial and trial processes for sexual abuse cases by Jan Logie and Andrew Little. The Minister for No is now dead keen to be seen to be doing something, but takes a long time to say very little.
The two key question posed to her were whether she would look again at the Law Commission’s Inquiry into alternative court procedures, specifically a specialist sexual violence court and an alternative process for sexual offence cases; and to the same Commission’s recommendation that a judge may decide which questions should be presented to the victim in cases of sexual assault.
Collins avoided both issues today, as she did in Parliament last week. She reverted to her default position on the Inquiry that an inquisitorial approach to these cases would be a bridge too far for the judiciary and the law profession.
No doubt the questioners will try again in Parliament today. Perhaps it would be wise for the Minister to take up the suggestion of Metiria Turei and join with the Minister of Police in setting up an all-party Parliamentary group to consider what is a complex issue.
One thing is absolutely clear; all wisdom does not reside in the mind of the Minister.