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Gravy Train Conductor Jumps Aboard

23 November 2004

Gravy Train Conductor Jumps Aboard

Rt Hon Winston Peters has described the appointment of Doug Kidd to the Waitangi Tribunal as a giant leap backwards for all New Zealanders.

Doug Kidd, a former National Maori Affairs and Fisheries Minister is to replace historian and former Labour MP Dr Michael Bassett on the Tribunal.

"This is a case of the original conductor of the gravy train climbing on board,” said Mr Peters.

“Just when a fresh independent face was needed we are served up an old one.

“Mr Kidd was the architect of many of the problems besetting Maori today. As a negotiator for the 1992 Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Claim settlement, he helped create a mess that has taken nearly 15 years to untangle.

“He was also an apologist for Treaty ‘principles’ infecting legislation and an enthusiastic supporter of the taxpayer funded gravy train industry.

“Surely the Government could have come up with someone more objective and less tainted than this former Minister of Maori Affairs.”

Mr Peters paid tribute to retiring member Dr Michael Bassett.

“As a professional historian he took an objective and critical look at the facts of Treaty grievances. Unfortunately this attitude is not welcomed by Labour and National governments when it comes to Treaty issues,” said Mr Peters.


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