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English welcomes CPIT inquiry

Hon Bill English
National Education Spokesperson

21 June 2004

English welcomes CPIT inquiry

National's Education spokesman, Bill English, welcomes the Auditor-General's inquiry into conflicts of interest at Christchurch Polytech Institute of Technology (CPIT).

CPIT's Cool-IT programme generated more than $15 million for the polytech.

"The taxpayer has an interest in whether or not there is any truth to allegations that the programme generated considerable private benefit for polytech employees," says Mr English.

CPIT's Director of Development is also a shareholder and director of Brylton Software, which produced and marketed the Cool-IT software.

Brylton Software received payment of more than $5 million from CPIT.

"This gives the appearance of a conflict of interest," says Mr English.

"Government officials were first made aware of the potential for conflict of interest in November last year but Steve Maharey, Minister for Tertiary Education, dismissed the allegations and took no action.

"But the Auditor-General clearly sees grounds for an investigation.

"The commercial arrangements and private interests associated with this programme must be exposed so CPIT can get on with the business of providing quality education," says Mr English.


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