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Ask Telecom who leaked

Hon Bill English MP National Party Deputy Finance Spokesman

05 May 2006

Ask Telecom who leaked

National Party Associate Finance spokesman Bill English says Labour should ask Telecom if they know who's responsible for the unprecedented budget leak of confidential papers.

"A 'witch-hunt' is reportedly under way for the source of the leak, but I understand that Telecom hasn't even yet been asked if it knows who is responsible," says Mr English.

"Surely Labour's first step should have been to pick up the phone and ask Telecom if it knows where the papers came from. Is Labour worried the answer will be embarrassing?

"Labour shouldn't underestimate the seriousness of this issue.

"As the New Zealand Herald's John Armstrong points out, 'Sir Roger Douglas offered to resign as finance minister in 1986 after his office mailed Budget documents to news media organisations ahead of Budget day. That was a bureaucratic botch-up. This leak was malicious'.

"Sir Roger Douglas offered to quit because of something far less sinister that originated from his office. What standard will Labour set?" asks Mr English.

ENDS

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