Defamation Case Raises Serious Concerns
ACT Leader Hon Richard Prebble today said the defamation case against ACT MP Owen Jennings raised some serious concerns.
“This defamation case, by a Wool board employee, was bankrolled by the Wool Board. I understand that the employee isn’t even required to pay back to the board the financing he received, from his winnings.
“As the Wool Board’s money really belongs to farmers, surely he should.
“But there is a further question. Should a statutory body, which has the power to compulsorily levy, be using the funds to finance court cases against an MP who was questioning the wisdom of expenditure by the board and asking the board to be accountable to farmers for that expenditure?
“It is my view that the Wool Board financed this case in order to intimidate MPs to stop asking searching questions.
“This is the second time that a statutory body has gone to court against an MP – the other occasion being of course NZ Post against myself.
“I think these cases are a threat to proper Parliamentary scrutiny,” Hon Richard Prebble said.