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Helen Clark overrules Speaker on TV ban

Helen Clark overrules Speaker on TV ban

Monday 21 Mar 2005

Rodney Hide - News & Views - Other

Helen Clark has kicked for touch Speaker Margaret Wilson's intention to ban television news cameras from Parliament because she doesn't want a fight over freedom of the press in election year, said ACT Leader Rodney Hide today.

Mr Hide's comments follow the post-Cabinet announcement that Labour is deferring funding approval for a new $6.2 million television camera system till next year's Budget.

"Without the money, Margaret Wilson can't install the new system and so can't ban TVNZ's and TV3's cameras from Parliament. Helen Clark has just shown the new Speaker who is boss.

"Helen Clark's deferment also shows that she is not interested in having the extra taxpayer-funded TV service if she can't kick TVNZ and TV3 out.

"There's no principle at work here. If there were, Helen Clark would guarantee TVNZ's and TV3's right to cover Parliament with their own cameras irrespective of the extra service," said Mr Hide.

ENDS

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