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Awatere Huata Must Resign

Awatere Huata Must Resign

Thursday 6 Nov 2003 Ken Shirley Press Releases -- Other

"I was shocked to learn that Donna Awatere Huata and trusts that she is both directly and indirectly associated with have received nearly $2 million of taxpayers money from various Government departments and Crown agencies," ACT New Zealand Acting Leader Ken Shirley said today.

"Mrs Awatere Huata deceived her Caucus colleagues about the funding and her involvement with the various trusts," Mr Shirley said.

"She should have resigned from Parliament. She has been unable to perform her responsibilities and duties as an MP throughout the year following the serious allegations made against her. That situation has this week been considerably compounded by the charges that have been laid in the court following the nine-month investigation of the Serious Fraud Office.

"We have always taken care not to prejudice her right to a fair trial on the charges in front of the Court. We have been extremely patient and have awaited the outcomes of both the Audit Office and SFO inquiries.

"The news that her party membership has lapsed is a further development. ACT President Catherine Judd has advised me that Mrs Awatere Huata's application to rejoin the party, which was received this morning, will be rejected.

"I believe the ACT Caucus is now entitled to institute procedures to expel her from Caucus because she has clearly broken Caucus rules.

"In my capacity as Acting Leader I now intend to instigate procedures to confirm her expulsion," Mr Shirley 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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