Wellington The Big Loser In Bunkle/Hobbs Fiasco
United Future leader and Ohariu Belmont MP, Hon Peter Dunne, says the Wellington region is the major loser in the ongoing row over allowances paid to Ministers Marion Hobbs and Phillida Bunkle.
"Both Ministers claim a great affinity with this region, yet the region is the big loser because of their actions."
"I hold no brief for these Ministers' actions in claiming out-of-Wellington allowances, whilst registered on the Wellington Central electoral roll, and I am strongly of the view they should be held fully accountable for this."
"Although I am not especially concerned about the reputation of these two Ministers, I am, as Wellington's currently longest serving MP, extremely concerned that the prolonged nature of this saga is doing the Wellington region great damage by leaving it critically under-represented in Government."
"At a time when we face major regional issues - such as the future of our urban passenger rail services and the need for Transmission Gully - Wellington's influence in Government seems more based around whether these two Ministers should or should not be claiming certain allowances."
"Wellington voters are entitled to expect that all MPs claiming an affinity with this region will be fully committed to promoting and serving the region's interests, without distraction."
"If Ms Hobbs and Ms Bunkle continue to fail to satisfy public opinion that their actions in this regard were beyond reproach, then I say that for the sake of the region they profess to serve they should go, and make way for MPs with a clear and unambiguous commitment to the Wellington region," Mr Dunne says.