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No choice – Piripi must go

No choice – Piripi must go

“Haami Piripi’s comments on National Radio this morning leaves the board of the Maori Language Commission with no choice other than to sack him,” says National’s Maori Affairs spokesman, Gerry Brownlee.

“He clearly has no idea of what is appropriate and what is not for an employee of the taxpayer.”

Mr Piripi’s role as Chief Executive of the Maori Language Commission has come under scrutiny following his submission opposing the Foreshore and Seabed Bill. In the strongly worded submission, Mr Piripi said the proposed legislation would see the country ‘brought to its knees by internal conflict and perhaps civil war’.

“Today, on National Radio, he stood by his outlandish comments and added to them,” says Mr Brownlee.

“The first thing he needs to do is withdraw the submission and then apologise for the statements.

“These inflammatory and divisive comments come on top of derogatory remarks about Don Brash last week.

“This from a man who describes himself as the ‘consummate civil servant’. What a joke. Civil servants must remain non-partisan. If Mr Piripi isn’t, he should stop taking from the public purse and resign.”

While claiming that he made the submission as a private citizen, Mr Piripi begins the submission by describing his position as a senior public servant and states that he has ‘represented the New Zealand Government on numerous occasions’.

“Public servants cannot voice private views publicly. He should recognise his own standing with the Maori Language Commission and should resign to bring some respect back to the office,” says Mr Brownlee.

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