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Shipley either sloppy or dishonest

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Justice
Media Statement

22 March, 2000

Shipley either sloppy or dishonest

Justice Minister Phil Goff stated again this afternoon that the parents of children involved in the Ellis case have not been denied assistance for legal representation to the recently announced Ministerial Inquiry.

Mr Goff was responding to Mrs Shipley's statement, slipped out last Friday afternoon and repeated today by Mr Ryall in the House, that he had already turned the parents' request down.

"Parents of the creche children wrote to me on 14 March asking for assistance and my reply is attached. I am still giving consideration to their request, having asked them for some clarification.

"I am sympathetic to the suggestion that the viewpoint of the families is properly represented to the Inquiry, just as Mr Ellis' viewpoint will need to be. It is important that the submissions to the Inquiry address the terms of reference and are expressed in a clear and focused manner. Legal representation of the families will assist in achieving that objective.

"I did turn down an earlier request by a lawyer acting for some of the parents for a counsel to be appointed to assist the families to make submissions on the need for an inquiry in the first place.

"To confuse the two requests and their replies Mrs Shipley has either been very sloppy or quite dishonest".


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