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Commissioner Must Be Best Person For The Job

Commissioner Must Be Best Person For The Job

Tuesday 12 Aug 2003 Dr Muriel Newman Press Releases -- Social Welfare

ACT New Zealand Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman today expressed disappointment that the Labour Government had appointed a new Commissioner for Children without consulting with Opposition parties.

"The role of Commissioner for Children is an independent Parliamentary position, and the fact that it has a five-year term - straddling electoral cycles - means that Opposition parties should be consulted before any appointment is made," Dr Newman said.

"The Childrens Commissioner Bill is currently before Parliament. In light of the fact that it will give the Commissioner greater powers, not only is the independence of the position of paramount importance, but so too is the need for all MPs and New Zealanders to have faith in the position.

"New Zealand deserves to know that the Commissioner for Children has been appointed because they are the best person for the job - not for their ideological beliefs or political connections.

"Cross party consultation would have allayed such concerns, as it does with the appointments of the Clerk of the House of Representatives, the Controller and Auditor-General, the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment and the Ombudsman - all appointed after cross-party consultation," Dr Newman said.

ENDS

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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