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Nancy Wake is a hero, no question about that

23 February 2006

Nancy Wake is a hero, no question about that

Judith Collins demand that Jim Anderton be sacked from the Honours Secretariat is ridiculous because he is not even on it.

The National MP's call for his sacking is a result of Jim Anderton not giving support to a nomination for an award to Nancy Wake. Jim Anderton said from Europe that he declined to do this on the grounds that, on the advice he received, Nancy Wake does not fit our New Zealand war time honours criteria.

"I was not belittling Nancy Wake's war time efforts in not supporting a request that she receive a New Zealand honour for services to this country. Nancy Wake has been honoured for services from other countries, which she justly deserves," Jim Anderton said from Paris today, where he is attending key agricultural and fishing meetings.

"Nancy Wake did not serve with or alongside New Zealand forces at any time during the war, which would be the usual basis for specific recognition of her war service by our country. Nancy Wake's association with New Zealand, on advice that I received, was slight. Nancy Wake left New Zealand for Australia as a toddler of two in 1916 and, as far as I know, did not live in New Zealand any time since.

"National MP Judith Collins has had every opportunity twice a year, every year, to nominate Nancy Wake for the Honours list and to my knowledge, I don't believe she has ever done this. I have spent the last sixteen years campaigning for a posthumous award for the extraordinarily brave Colonel William Malone and the National Party never indicated any interest in honouring one of New Zealand's greatest unsung heroes," Jim Anderton said

ENDS

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