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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Inside jobs

NZ Herald:
Justice Minister Judith Collins has appointed former Cabinet colleague Wayne Mapp to the Law Commission, ignoring recommendations and without consulting her ministry or other interest groups.
Mr Power retired from politics in November, and Ms Collins discussed the commission vacancy with Dr Mapp some time before December 20, when Dr Mapp emailed Ms Collins his CV.

In January, Ms Collins decided on Dr Mapp and declined to check the availability of the [six] people that Sir Grant [President of the Commission] had put forward.
A cabinet paper in February showed that Ms Collins did not consult or inform any departments, agencies or interest groups.

She consulted Attorney-General Chris Finlayson, the Government caucus and Act, Maori and United Future parties.

If the National Party could be considered a family then this would be just another case of familial favouratism in a long tradition of rampant clan nepotism. The list is just too long of the dodgy inside appointments made by this government: from NZ On Air's board member who is John Key's electorate chair, to the stacking already underway in the Lotteries Commission, to the ex-MP, Brian Neeson and ex-candidate Ravi Musuku at the Human Rights Commission, Don Brash heading his own taskforce last time... too many.

And then there's ex-Cabinet Minister Simon Power. He hasn't been put on any board (at least not yet) because he's now working for Westpac - the government's banker - waiting for the privatisation of state assets to complete the private-public circuit.

The problem is that this isn't an exclusive Tory proclivity at all - the Labour Party is every bit as bad and whatever their protestations at each appointment as they come up they won't do anything about changing the system.

Labour leader David Shearer said the appointment needed scrutiny.

"The perception is that there have been a number of appointments made that have been close to National.

"These types of appointments might just fuel that perception - that National is looking after their own."

But no hint of stopping it. Shearer can come up with his own members bill to tighten up on foreign land sales, pity he can't get a bill to stop the cronyism.


At 13/3/12 3:23 pm, Blogger Idiot/Savant said...

I'm quite hapy to keep OIAing Ministers of whatever party on crony appointments. Either they'll learn not to do it (or at least to follow a credible process, so they have some claim that it was made on merit rather than as a mattr of patronage), or they'll keep getting stories like the above.


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