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Minister shuffles his feet on activist's job

Gerry Brownlee MP
National Party State Services Spokesman

22 November 2007

Minister shuffles his feet on activist's job

National Party State Services spokesman Gerry Brownlee says Climate Change Minister David Parker has now all-but admitted interfering in the appointment of a Labour Party activist at the Environment Ministry.

Previously, Mr Parker said he had merely 'floated' a name.

"But today he has also admitted 'offering the benefit' of his experience, and pointing to the communications disasters at the Environment Ministry in the same discussion about whether Clare Curran should be employed.

"If the Minister is telling his Chief Executive, you've messed up the fart tax, you've messed up our other climate change initiatives, and this woman can fix it - what real choice did the Ministry have?"

Mr Brownlee says in order to prove wrong the claims that Mr Parker was involved in some kind of political appointment, the Ministry should simply release Clare Curran's advice, the drafts, the papers, and any strategies she was involved in preparing.

"Let the public draw their own conclusions about the job that was being done."

Mr Brownlee is also surprised that the union representing the neutral public service has not offered any advice to its members on the issue of a 'public service blacklist'.

"Erin Leigh says the reason she did not come forward earlier is that she was afraid of being blacklisted from other Government jobs. That is a deeply disturbing revelation when there are supposed to be a number of watchdogs protecting public service neutrality."


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