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Personal Explanation--Lost Taxi Chits: Allegations

Personal Explanation--Lost Taxi Chits: Allegations

(HANSARD OFFICIAL PARLIAMENTARY RECORD EXTRACT...)

RODNEY HIDE (ACT NZ): I wish to make a personal explanation regarding the claim in the House yesterday that someone should explain to the House the story about an MP who lost a book of taxi chits. In the House yesterday Mr Peters said that an MP had lost a book of taxi chits and that an explanation was owed to the House. I have since learnt from the media that Mr Peters has named me as the MP. I completely deny any wrongdoing. Two years ago I lost a book of taxi chits. I immediately advised the Parliamentary Service financial controller. I was surprised to discover that there is no way of cancelling taxi chits. Some time later, taxi chits from the lost book began to be presented by taxi companies. This was reported to the police. The advice I received was that Parliamentary Services was entitled to dishonour the chits and that I had no further liability. However, the taxi drivers are the innocent party in all of this, so I told the financial controller that as I had lost the book of taxi chits I would accept financial liability. The stolen taxi chits were presented over a period of about 12 months. The total amount came to over $500, and I have paid for each chit. I have gone further than that. In relation to Parliamentary Service, I have trialled a new book of taxi chits called "Taxi Charge'', prepared by the company Cardlink Systems Ltd, that is forgery-proof. The Cardlink chits are excellent. I understand there is some reluctance from MPs to use the new books, but can I commend my experience to the House.

ENDS

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