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Will the last remaining National MP please turn all the lights off

Written By: - Date published: 8:08 am, June 23rd, 2021 - 38 comments
Categories: Judith Collins, national, same old national - Tags:

Oh dear.

Another story about yet another National MP in trouble because of their born to rule impulses.

From Claire Trevett in the Herald:

A National Party MP faced allegations of inappropriate spending of taxpayer money – allegations the MP is refusing to front on and which Parliamentary Service refuses to discuss under the cone of silence that protects MPs.

Sources inside the National Party have told NZME that a staff member of the MP flagged a concern in the last term of Parliament, alleging items of furniture were bought out of the MP’s taxpayer funds but did not appear in the office.

The items of furniture are understood to include a television.

The allegation was that the items went to the MP’s home rather than their office.

It is also understood the cost of a sofa the MP bought for the office at Parliament was also questioned, and the MP was told to return it.

Parliamentary Service has refused to say whether it investigated the allegations or whether any action was taken.

The MP at the centre of the accusations has refused to answer any questions on the matter.

Collins’ office has attempted to divert by releasing a copy of a letter from Parliamentary Service stating there were “no records of formal complaints” on file relating to the MP.  Parliamentary Service then confirmed a formal complaint is not required for them to investigate.

The story appears to have started from sources inside the National Party.  It must be a really fun party to be in right now.

Update:  the Herald has reported that the MP is Harete Hipango.  These blue on blue attacks are getting out of hand.

38 comments on “Will the last remaining National MP please turn all the lights off ”

  1. Incognito 1

    Dude, where’s my couch?

  2. Patricia Bremner 2

    That reeks of entitlement. If a beneficiary behaved like that? Wow and wow. I was brought up to understand that behaviour was "Theft as a servant".

  3. Incognito 3

    Why would an MP need a television in their office? Is that normal?

  4. mpledger 4

    " It must be a really fun party to be in right now. "

    You'd think but apparently some people thrive on chaos and doing other people harm.

  5. Sacha 5

    I'm guessing this MP with lavish taste in couches is still in office and a threat to one Nat faction or another..

  6. dv 6

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/300339973/former-national-leader-todd-muller-retiring-at-next-election-cites-health-concerns

    And now Muller retiring at next election

    Former National leader Todd Muller retiring at next election, cites health concerns

    • alwyn 6.1

      I am usually pretty cynical about politicians retiring for health or family reasons but this is one case where I don't have the slightest doubt about it being true.

      • RosieLee 6.1.1

        Keep up the cynicism. He can afford to retire for health and family reasons, as we all would on a very nice pension.

        • alwyn 6.1.1.1

          And what is this "very nice pension" you are talking about? If he has such a thing it won't have come from his time in Parliament.

          The most he can possibly get is a contribution of 20% of the basic MP salary each year that he is in Parliament. He entered the House in 2014.

          That would total, for the 9 years he will have been an MP about $280,000.

          That is a nice little sum to be sure but it isn't really going to provide Champagne and Caviar is it? The so-called "gold plated pension" scheme vanished many years ago. Nick Smith was the last person to qualify for it and nobody else ever will..

          • mac1 6.1.1.1.1

            Alwyn, are you sure? What i just read seems to say that an MP can contribute 20% of salary which is then augmented as a lump sum upon retirement at a 1:2.5 subsidy.

            So, Muller in 9 years could get 20% of annual salary times 9 times 2.5. 160,000 at 20% is $32,000 times 9 years $288,000 times 2.5 employer contribution gives $720,000.

            “The ratio of superannuation subsidy to the member’s contribution is 2.5 to 1, so that a member must make a contribution to the retirement scheme of $1 for every $2.50 of superannuation subsidy.

            Am I right? https://www.legislation.govt.nz/regulation/public/2003/0306/latest/DLM222350.html

            • alwyn 6.1.1.1.1.1

              The short answer is no, although I see where the confusion is, as the wording is a little funny. You are double counting the 2.5 multiplier.

              The full phrase in the legislation is " the maximum amount that may be paid by way of superannuation subsidy is 20% of an ordinary member’s salary for that period of service."

              That is the maximum subsidy paid which is what the taxpayer is putting in. It isn't the maximum the MP can put in. To get the maximum subsidy the MP would have to contribute at least 8% and then the 2.5 multiplier brings the tax-payer subsidy up to 20%.

              My $280k is pretty rough of course. I couldn't be bothered working out what each years salary would have been so I just did a rough approximation.

      • Jimmy 6.1.2

        I reckon Judith told him to go (just my opinion). I don't think he was given much choice but to resign.

  7. Jimmy 8

    The National MP should be investigated and given the chance to "please explain", and if unable to adequately explain (which IMO is highly likely), he should resign or be sacked. MP's need to realise they are not above the normal rules. Having said that, when I have made similar comments on here about Labour or Green MP's acting inappropriately, I've copped a lot of flack. Should be one rule for all.

  8. Barfly 9

    Given the "place of work" this may have occurred in I think a SFO referral may be in order devil

    • roy cartland 10.1

      Wow. As Ad said above, they sure know how to pick 'em.

    • woodart 10.2

      maybe these continued attacks on hipango are part of a bigger picture. have seen a bit more from luxon lately, is this the beginning of the end of judiths eyebrow relevance . will she follow muldoon as a sideplayer in a rocky horror revival?

      • joe90 10.2.1

        Jude's got a perception problem with her overwhelmingly pale, male caucus. So Harete's part of her solution but unfortunately, nobody took local opinions seriously when they told selectors just how fucking awful she [Harete] is.

  9. Leighton 11

    And the clown show rolls on….

  10. Tiger Mountain 12

    Political career (such as it was of course) for a flat screen & sofa? Where do NZ Nashnull find these people really. Maybe “Merv” was one of the talent scouts?

    • Patricia Bremner 12.1

      Or…. where does Goodfellow feature? What criteria do National require?

      Callous? Entitled? Religious? … so many qualities lol, IMO … Make a good caption section. Mind you compared to some on their past list this is small beer.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 13.1

      Muller has confirmed to the Herald that he admitted at that caucus meeting to making a comment that was quoted in the media.

      "I did not leak. I made a comment to a journalist that was subsequently quoted. Yesterday I admitted to that and apologised for this."

      More 'strong/wrong team' players incapable of following honest 'Telfon' John's advice:

      John Key: If you can't quit leaking, quit National
      Former Prime Minister Sir John Key has a staunch message to any National MPs who continue to leak against the party: "If you can't quit leaking, quit the party".

      Honest John must be tearing his hair out – what prospects a 'finance hub' in NZ now?

      Keep a lid on it; transparency isn’t playing out well for Nat MPs right now.

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