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Minister abuses position to settle old score

Belinda Vernon

Opposition Work and Income spokesperson

13 April 2000

Minister abuses position to settle old score

The Government is about to announce major changes that will fragment the delivery of employment programmes and it seems the only justification is so one Minister can settle an old score, says National's Work and Income spokesperson Belinda Vernon revealed today.

The Opposition has been told that the Government plans to announce that the Community Employment Group within WINZ will move back into the Department of Labour.

"This pointless restructuring is purely to settle a personal grudge held by Associate Employment Minister Parekura Horomia who was the former General Manager of CEG.

"It is a short sighted move that achieves nothing but further disruption for an organisation which desperately needs stability.

"Rather than working together to improve results for those seeking work, CEG will once again run its own programmes operating in isolation and independently.

"The Minister has let his personal opinion override the logical and practical sense of having all employment programmes delivered by the one agency - WINZ.

"There is no logic in having WINZ regional commissioners and CEG people acting independently. Unemployed New Zealanders will be the casualties of this pointless restructuring.

"Mr Horomia has hated WINZ since it absorbed his CEG empire in 1998. He personally disagreed with the merger and he took his redundancy and ran.

"Now he is a Minister and he is abusing his position to settle the score," says Ms Vernon.

Ends


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