Paintergate: What more don't we know
Hon Bill English National Party Leader
7 July 2002
What more don't we know
Helen Clark's behaviour over the investigation into 'paintergate' will make it impossible for her to campaign on law and order during this election, says National Party Leader Bill English.
"I am shocked at the behaviour of the Prime Minister of our country. When she came into office she said she would raise standards of public behaviour.
"The police report shows that even the police found it hard to believe that Helen Clark could not recall the TV coverage regarding publicity about the original charity event. I note that the report states, it is however considered unlikely that Miss Clark or her staff were unaware of this coverage. There appears to have been no action taken to set the record straight.
"It appears the Prime Minister made no effort to co-operate with the police. We now know she refused to be interviewed by police. Evidence given by staff show Miss Clark was involved in the destruction of the painting. The police point out, Miss Clark has not commented on this matter in her statement to the police.
"Helen Clark should have stopped her staff destroying the painting. Then she certainly should have told the police in her statement about her role.
"This behaviour from someone in such high office is unacceptable, and it means who can now trust her on anything she says. No wonder they are denying health cuts, pretending there is no crisis in education, and acting like we have no law and order problem. It is not leadership to cover up and hope it all goes away.
"Well I intend to make sure it does not. New Zealand deserves better than this and under my leadership that is what this country will get," says Mr English.