- Date published:
8:35 am, August 19th, 2015 - 21 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, accountability, housing, national, Privatisation - Tags: arrogance, culture of secrecy, not yours to sell, state housing sell-off, thirdtermitis, unaccountable
National’s selloff of our state houses is yet another example of its two main obsessions, secrecy and unaccountable power. In Tracy Watkins’ piece this morning:
Government’s social housing legislation passes first hurdle
The Social Housing Reform (Transaction Mandate) Bill enables the Government to transfer State housing to third party providers.
It passed its first hurdle in Parliament on Tuesday to stiff opposition from Labour and the Greens, who accused the Government of doing “dirty deals” with property developers and others who wanted to get their hands on billions of dollars worth of publicly owned housing.
Labour MP Phil Twyford said the legislation gave Government ministers “extraordinary powers” to sell State houses, personally negotiate contracts on any terms and conditions and take any action to facilitate the sales process, without any reference to the Housing New Zealand board of chief executive.
It also exempted them from social, environmental and financial oversight obligations, Twyford said. “These provisions given this Government’s track record should be ringing alarm bells loud and clear,” he said. “It wants the freedom to do dirty deals flogging off billions of dollars of publicly owned land and housing.
“We know that the Government is currently having secret meetings with merchant bankers, PPP [public private partnership] investors and property developers who want their hands on valuable public assets.”
The Government was refusing to release details about who they were meeting, however. …
Of course they won’t release details of who they are meeting, we the people can’t be allowed to know these things (like ECAN and the TPP). In other coverage:
Labour resists ‘sickening’ housing Bill
Labour, the Greens and NZ First say it is another asset sale.
“This is sickening,” Labour’s Phil Twyford said during the Bill’s first reading debate on Tuesday night. “The Government is having secret meetings with merchant bankers and developers who want to get their hands on these assets.”
Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei said the Bill made cabinet ministers the sole owners of an $18 billion asset built up over generations. “They can sell anything they want to anyone they like, from anywhere, for any price,” she said. …
Obsessive secrecy and unaccountable power – the worst government since Muldoon.