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FEC supports taking TVNZ to Privileges committee

John Key MP
National Party Finance Spokesman
15 February 2006

FEC supports bid for TVNZ to go before Privileges committee

The finance and expenditure select committee has unanimously resolved to support National Finance spokesman John Key’s bid to refer the TVNZ board to Parliament’s privileges committee in relation to former CEO Ian Fraser.

Mr Key says he will now move to write to the Speaker asking it to consider if the TVNZ board has committed contempt of Parliament by its actions in relation to Mr Fraser. The FEC today resolved to support his call.

Mr Fraser has filed a personal grievance against the TVNZ board after it stripped him of his remaining duties and accused him of ‘serious misconduct’ for speaking out at the committee’s inquiry last year into the broadcaster.

“Today the committee has unanimously resolved to recommend that the privileges committee investigate the issue,” says Mr Key.

“The board’s reaction should have sent a chill down the spine of every MP. Quasi-public servants and public servants should be able to tell the truth to select committees without fear of retribution.

“The committee’s decision today is a victory for the public, and a victory for parliamentary democracy.

“Oversight of public entities is one of Parliament’s vital functions. We cannot have entities running around intimidating witnesses who are telling the truth.”

ENDS

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