Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Minister okays 'highly political' public service

Gerry Brownlee MP
National Party State Services Spokesman

15 November 2007

Minister okays 'highly political' public service

National Party State Services spokesman Gerry Brownlee says Labour's green lighted a 'highly political' public service during answers to Parliamentary questions today.

"The State Services Minister David Parker has green-lighted 'highly political' roles in the supposedly neutral public service. He, as the guardian of public service neutrality, is abandoning the long-held conventions and the rules as we've always known them."

Mr Parker was asked to respond to Jim Anderton's comment in the Hunn report on the Madeleine Setchell employment case that: 'the role of communications advisers ... had developed to be very different from what it might have been in the past because it increasingly involved communications strategy (and sometimes highly political strategy) rather than mere reporting'.

"Mr Parker confirmed that he did not think there was anything wrong with that statement, even though departments are supposed to be politically neutral.

"Appallingly, Mr Parker has also backed Jim Anderton's decision to veto Madeleine Setchell's employment at MAF."

Mr Anderton vetoed Ms Setchell because he effectively said that if there was a leak, she would be blamed.

"That can be seen in no other way as a clear steer to his departmental CEO that he should not employ Ms Setchell because the Minister could not trust her and he couldn't see any way through managing the 'perceived' conflict.

"Ms Setchell's competence and professionalism are held in high regard. She had worked for government departments before, yet she was vetoed from two departmental roles by Ministers because of who her partner worked for.

"This is the new low standard which Labour is promoting for our 'neutral' public service. If applicants have a friend or a relative with political connections it does not matter how competent you are - there is no place in the public service for you under Labour."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: on the inquiry into the abuse of children in care

Apparently, PM Jacinda Ardern has chosen to exclude faith-based institutions from the government’s promised inquiry into the abuse of children in state care.

Any role for religious institutions – eg the Catholic Church – would be only to observe and to learn from any revelations that arise from the inquiry’s self-limiting focus on state-run institutions… More


Gordon Campbell: On Jim Anderton
For anyone born after 1975, it is hard to grasp just how important a figure Jim Anderton was, for an entire generation.
During the mid to late 1980s, Anderton was the only significant public figure of resistance to the Labour government’s headlong embrace of Thatcherism...More>>


Gong Time: New Year's Honours List

Jacinda Ardern today congratulated the 179 New Zealanders named on the 2018 New Year’s Honours List.

“Although this list was compiled and completed by the last government, it is a pleasure to welcome in the New Year by recognising exceptional New Zealanders,” Jacinda Ardern said.

“As an Aunty, I love reading books to my nieces, so it’s lovely to congratulate Joy Cowley, who is made a member of the Order of New Zealand today....More
Full list

Roads: National launches bid to save highway projects

The National Party has launched a series of petitions aimed at saving regional highway projects at risk because of the Government’s obsession with Auckland trams…More>>


Medical Cannabis: Bill Introduced to “ease suffering”

Health Minister Dr David Clark says making medicinal cannabis more readily available will help relieve the suffering of people who are dying in pain More>>


Campbell: On The Quest For Zero Net Carbon Emissions
Some would querulously ask, zero net carbon emissions by 2050 – while others would say, why not?


CPAG Report: The Further Fraying Of The Welfare Safety Net

New Zealand’s welfare system has undergone a major transformation during the past three decades. This process has seriously thwarted the original intent of the system, which was to provide a decent standard of living for all New Zealanders in times of need... More>>





Featured InfoPages