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TVNZ - WINZ Inquiry - Fear of abduction in Lisa Blackie homicide

TVNZ: There was a crisis meeting today between the TVNZ Board and Minister of Broadcasting, Marion Hobbs and Finance Minister Dr Michael Cullen. The meeting was over the $5.2 million compensation payment to John Hawkesby and the subsequent actions of the Board. The Board now has allegations made against it that Hawkesby's contract had its origins based on enticement from TV3. TV3 are not commenting but are taking legal advice in light of the new information that has come to hand. The Broadcasting Minister can request resignations from the TVNZ Board but has so far not done so. Chairperson Ms Meo, has indicated that she will be standing down and two other Board members are also due to stand down. Dr Cullen and Marion Hobbs will be reporting to the Prime Minister, Helen Clark, later tonight.

WINZ INQUIRY: The Prime Minister says all is not well at Work and Income NZ and management must be held accountable. Labour promised an inquiry last year and says it will look at WINZ head Christine Rankin's management practices, the WINZ culture of extravagance, WINZ style of doing business and the way in which WINZ was set-up by the last Government. State Services Minister,Trevor Mallard, says WINZ does have a reputation for wastage and extravagance which the public finds unacceptable. Former State Services Commissioner, Don Hunn will chair the inquiry at $800 per day with the full inquiry expected to cost $120,000. The inquiry will place Christine Rankin under severe scrutiny. Her contract is up next year with senior Ministers saying they don't want her back.

LISA BLAKIE MURDER: Police hold fears that homicide victim, Lisa Blakie, was abducted and held captive for several days by her killer. Police have released details of a car she was said to be getting into four days before her body was discovered. The car is browny-beige and square shaped. Police say a solidly built blonde-haired man aged around 40 was behind the wheel of the car at a Christchurch service station. A car of similar description was seen at a rest area where her body was found. Police say, however, this car is just one possibility in the hunt for Miss Blakie's murderer.


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