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Govt ignores repeated warnings over dud Bank

Jenny Shipley Leader of the Opposition

11 April 2001

Govt ignores repeated warnings over dud Bank proposal

Clear evidence has emerged today that Helen Clark has paid $80 million to buy Jim Anderton's support for the coalition, Opposition Leader Jenny Shipley said today.

"Today's release of information under the OIA shows the Government has wilfully disregarded repeated warnings over the Peoples Bank for the sake of political expediency," Mrs Shipley said.

"The experts at Treasury, CCMAU and the Reserve Bank were unanimous in their verdict - don't do it! But the Government ignored those warnings, and is gambling $80 million of taxpayer money on a rank outsider," Jenny Shipley said.

"That's not decisive or courageous decision making; it's a foolhardy use of taxpayers money to secure the Government's junior coalition partner.

"Labour has taken the irrational and irresponsible decision to proceed with this bank as a means of securing Alliance support, by giving Jim Anderton a toy to play with. For each Alliance vote in parliament Labour is putting $8 million of taxpayer money at extreme risk.

"Dr Cullen's explanation for this fiasco is risible. He claims Cameron and Co warned the bank would not attract sufficient customers, but New Zealand Post said 'she'll be right', so the Government proceeded.

"That's bad politics, not good Governance," Jenny Shipley said.

Ends

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