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Select committee oversight of SIS, GCSB required

22 November 2004

Hon Matt Robson MP, Progressive Deputy Leader

Select committee oversight of SIS, GCSB required

Allegations raised in the Sunday Star-Times that the SIS has spied on Maori highlight the need for a Parliamentary select committee to be able to oversee the activities of security agencies.

In 1998 the SIS was involved in the burglary of the home of anti-globalisation activist Aziz Choudry and in raiding Dr David Small’s home in Christchurch. Their ‘crime’ was to be active on social justice issues and being leading opponents of the then government’s trade policies. Subsequent court action found the SIS had acted illegally and considerable compensation was awarded.

The public have to be able to have confidence that the SIS and GCSB are acting lawfully at all times and that the agencies do not interfere with legitimate political activity, says Matt Robson.

It is Progressive Party policy to have a broad parliamentary select committee to scrutinise security agencies.

ENDS

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