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Anderton unfit for security committee

“The Deputy Prime Minister has shown he is unfit to be a member of the Parliamentary Security Intelligence Committee,” Opposition Leader Jenny Shipley said today.

“Anderton is going to vote for a Green Party amendment to the Radio-communications Amendment Bill which would virtually eliminate the ability of the SIS to intercept foreign telecommunications.

“He is happy for police to be able to use information to catch criminals but he does not want to allow the SIS to use information to catch terrorists.

“Only a week after being confirmed by the Parliament as a member of the committee, he is striking at the heart of its work. It is the responsibility of this committee to see that systems secure the safety of New Zealand and its people.

“It is made more serious by the fact that when the Prime Minister is out of New Zealand, Anderton would hold the warrant for the SIS, yet he has shown he is not prepared to let it defend New Zealand’s interests.

“This is an extraordinary situation for the Government.

“I call on the Prime Minister to bring Mr Anderton in to line on this issue. Unless she can do that, Anderton must resign from the committee.

“It is extraordinary that Labour is now reliant on National to vote for crucial legislation to protect the integrity of the SIS to carry out its vital task of protecting the security of New Zealand,” Mrs Shipley said.

Ends

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