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ACT Welcomes Support From Te Puni Kokiri

ACT Welcomes Support From Te Puni Kokiri

ACT Leader Hon Richard Prebble has welcomed the show of support for his questioning of the accountability Maori welfare providers from Te Puni Kokiri head Dr Ngatata Love.

Dr Love said in the New Zealand Herald yesterday that the ACT leader was quite right to question controls over taxpayer-funded contracts to Maori health and welfare providers, such as the Waipareira Trust.

"ACT will continue to raise such questions to ensure taxpayer funds meant for the assistance of low-income New Zealanders are used effectively."

"Perhaps then we really will be able to close the gaps" said Mr Prebble.

The article is reprinted in full below:

"ACT Leader Richard Prebble is quite right to question controls over taxpayer-funded contracts to Maori health and welfare providers such as the Waipareira Trust, says Te Puni Kokiri chief executive Dr Ngatata Love.

Dr Love said it was crucial that Maori organisations were robust, transparent and totally accountable for any taxpayers' money they received for contracts to deliver health, education, employment or welfare services to Maori.

The need for robust delivery organisations would become increasingly important under the Government's Closing the Gaps programme.

Dr Love said he was advocating a very strict regime in three areas.
First, service-delivery organisations must have a solid legal basis.

Second, there had to be precise, clear and transparent management and accounting systems before any contract was awarded, plus a robust governance system.

Third, contracts with providers had to be subject to an almost continual process of communication between providers and Government funding agencies, with audits and monitoring of outcomes by the funding agencies.

"I don't have a problem with Mr Prebble's questions. I'm saying to our people: 'Look, if you want to do this job you've got to be totally accountable.' "

Mr Prebble has been attacking management practices at the Auckland-based urban Maori trust when it was headed by John Tamihere, now a Labour MP. NZPA

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