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Bathgate Secures Secret Sweetheart Deal

ACT Finance Spokesman MP Rodney Hide today accused Margaret Wilson of arranging a secret settlement with her friend and disgraced Employment Relations Authority member Susan Bathgate.

"Bathgate resigned on November 29 following receipt of John Upton QC's November 23 report into whether there were grounds for my call for Bathgate to be sacked of her warrants.

"Bathgate resigned following the report but with a sweetheart deal.
* Wilson has refused to waive privilege and release the Upton report.
* She has allowed Bathgate to keep her two remaining warrants.
* She has suckered the taxpayer out of $30,000 to pay Bathgate's legal fees.
* She has allowed Bathgate 36 days paid leave since October 2000.
* And to add a final insult on top of so many injuries, she has kept Bathgate on her $136,425 a year salary until 25 January 2002. That's despite Bathgate having only one decision to write up.

"Wilson has allowed her friend and dinner chum to live high on the taxpayer hog right up until the end. Her resignation should have been effective immediately, her legal fees should be for her to pay, and the Upton report should be made public.

"Once again, Margaret Wilson shows herself to be without one care for hardworking taxpayers of New Zealand and unfit to hold a ministerial warrant".

Ends


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