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Grant Robertson: Full independent inquiry needed to save New Zealand’s reputation

Written By: - Date published: 10:17 am, April 29th, 2016 - 35 comments
Categories: grant robertson, john key, labour, Politics - Tags: ,


Reprinted from Labour’s website.

Revelations that John Key’s personal lawyer and trust advisor led a lobbying campaign to shut down a review of New Zealand’s foreign trust regime makes the case for a full scale independent inquiry a matter of urgency, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says.

“Nothing less than an independent inquiry led by a person of the stature of a Judge with the ability to call witnesses and subpoena evidence will restore confidence from taxpayers in the fairness of our system.

“It is quite clear that John Key’s links to this industry are strong, despite his previous denials. His dismissive attitude towards the concerns of the majority of New Zealanders about our ‘tax haven’ status shows how out of touch he is on this issue.

“We have prided ourselves on being a country where you get a fair go if you do your fair share. More and more in John Key’s New Zealand it seems the way to get ahead is to be in the elite few who get to do deals with Ministers. That is not the Kiwi way.

“For John Key to claim that his response to an approach of his personal lawyer was the same as any other person is as farcical as it is disturbing. This was not some random person off the street, it was a close confidante whom he ‘asked to get in contact’ with a Minister.

“His lawyer and trust advisor got privileged access to a Minister on behalf of an industry that officials had identified as a cause of concern. After their lobbying, the Minister directed officials to drop their proposed review. That kind of insider influence will offend the ethics of middle New Zealanders.

“The review that officials had wanted to conduct was the right thing to do. Now the need for an independent inquiry is even more urgent if we are to restore New Zealand’s reputation as a country that values fairness and opposes corruption,” Grant Robertson says.

35 comments on “Grant Robertson: Full independent inquiry needed to save New Zealand’s reputation ”

  1. save NZ 1

    Adam Feeley looks like a good man to do the review. He is experienced in investigating fraud and corruption at government level. But of course he was too good at his job so had to go.

  2. AmaKiwi 2

    + 100 for passion.
    – 100 understanding of democracy

    If only parliament can institute an independent review, what are the odds Key will set up a review to investigate his own possible crimes? Zero.

    Grant, unless you demand a method for the people to control parliament, your carefully crafted statement is little more than political point scoring.

  3. Let me at them! Please, please, please!

  4. Ad 4

    Well, that was 12 hours before Robertson tried to elbow Cunliffe off the work only Cunliffe has the competence to do.

    Robertson should stick to stuff he knows about. Whatever that is.

    • weka 4.1

      +1. I’m biting my tongue over several issues.

    • Colonial Viper 4.2

      Grant likes to use others to test the waters first. If there are sharks or piranhas he stays clear and let’s the bait get eaten. If it proves good sailing with good fishing, he’s all in.

      His usual modus operandi.

    • mickysavage 4.3

      Not sure Ad good to see them both working together on the issue. Increases the effect if you can have various elements of the party engaged in a multi pronged attack.

  5. Draco T Bastard 5

    We have prided ourselves on being a country where you get a fair go if you do your fair share. More and more in John Key’s New Zealand it seems the way to get ahead is to be in the elite few who get to do deals with Ministers. That is not the Kiwi way.

    That’s been true since forever. Such corruption in endemic to pretty much all hierarchical systems but especially capitalism.

  6. adam 6

    Jumping the gun, there Grant.

    With weeks, possibly even months of revelations, and more information to come – the last thing we need is an enquiry before all the facts are on the table.

    But go ahead and make yourself look like a idiot, who wants to help these Tory fools, by shorting up the rope.

    • mickysavage 6.1

      What is wrong with the statement? I thought Grant nailed it.

      The Panama papers are going to dish up all sorts of deals which are going to raise questions. An inquiry would be a good place to start.

  7. Lanthanide 7

    “That kind of insider influence will offend the ethics of middle New Zealanders.”

    Why did he say “middle New Zealanders”? It implies that those at the top and the bottom won’t be offended by this.

    He should have said “everyday New Zealanders” – it’s actually an empty statement that means nothing, but it can’t be negatively interpreted, either deliberately or just passively.

    • TC 7.1

      Business as usual from another out of touch beltway pollie looking for some limelight

    • McFlock 7.2

      Subtext for “working”.

      The top will not necessarily see anything wrong with policy-for-me-mates, the bottom generally think of themselves as “middle” anyway, if they still vote.

      • Lanthanide 7.2.1

        Depends on your definition of the ‘top’, really. If the top is the top 10%, then I think the majority of people from 90% to 98% in household income percentile (I am amongst these) would have problems with this.

        It’s only when you get into the real elites and the 1% that people would stop having a problem.

  8. Grantoc 8

    Grants just being a drama queen.

    • AmaKiwi 8.1

      I think Grant is genuine in what he is saying. But he’s never been the brightest candle in the chandelier.

      • rhinocrates 8.1.1

        Just like when an autistic man was beaten up in custody by cops in Christchurch. “I want an inquiry!” And suddenly, once the cameras turned away from him, nothing happened.

        In my opinion he represents all that’s wrong with Labour. He knows he’s useless and doesn’t care because of his entitlement while even Mallard has sincere delusions of relevance.

  9. slumbergod 9

    Oh does that mean gutless Labour will promise to fix it AND FIX IT PROPERLY as an election pledge? No? So it is just hot air from them once again.

    • Ad 9.1

      An inquiry finds answers to problems.
      It doesn’t start with answers and find the evidence to fit.

  10. Pat 10

    unfortunately if we have a full and open independent enquiry (which we should) we may find we have no basis to save our international reputation.

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