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ACT MP accuses PM of Character Assassination

ACT MP accuses Prime Minister of Character Assassination

Friday 23rd Feb 2001 Donna Awatere Huata Media Release -- Governance & Constitution

Donna Awatere Huata MP said tonight in response to media requests that she and her lawyer Mr Paul Davidson had met with an officer from the Serious Fraud Office who was acting in response to a complaint from Parliamentary Services.

The matter concerns a claim for 35 days accommodation in Auckland prior to the last election. Parliamentary services accepts that I was on parliamentary business and entitled to make the claim and the dispute is over whether my claim should be on a daily basis or aggregated in weeks, so the amount of money is not large.

I was under the impression that this matter was settled months ago. I am disturbed to learn from the media that their source that I have had an interview with the Serious Fraud Office is the Prime Minister, when I was told that the matter was strictly confidential and was advised to keep it so.

My lawyer Mr Paul Davidson QC has advised me that in his view the matter is trivial and that there is no suggestion that I have attempted to make a fraudulent claim. I haven’t been charged with anything and I don’t expect to be.

I think this is an attempt by Helen Clark to take the focus away from her cheating Ministers.

I am confident that I have done nothing wrong and I have fully co-operated with the authorities. Further inquiries should be referred to my lawyer.

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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