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Will secret immigration report be released?

Lockwood Smith MP
National Party Immigration Spokesman

23 April 2008

Will secret immigration report be released?

National Party Immigration spokesman Lockwood Smith says a secret immigration report which has sparked a State Services inquiry must form part of that inquiry and details must be made public.

“The terms of the inquiry announced by Mark Prebble appear extraordinarily narrow. He will not examine what prompted the secret report, but how the secret report’s findings were subsequently handled.

“He says that excuses him from the conflict of having worked closely with one of the central characters in this whole case, Mary-Anne Thompson.

“But how could anyone come to a conclusion that the secret report was handled appropriately if they don’t look at what prompted it and the scale of alleged misbehaviour?

“Dr Prebble should step aside so the State Services Commission can properly examine those aspects.

“Labour must also tell the commission to widen its terms of reference. Between them, they must offer an assurance that the secret report will be released, while protecting the privacy of those who deserve it.

“If something was not right, the public deserve to know.”

Dr Smith says given that the Minister has refused to ask the department to release the secret report, the announcement of a second inquiry with narrow terms of reference is concerning.

“The process around this doesn’t look great.

“All we wanted was to see the first report so we could make our own judgment as to whether this was all handled properly. Now the Government wants us all to focus on a second report that isn’t even looking at what prompted this whole procedural circus.

“What is Immigration trying to hide? Why won’t the Minister call for full transparency?”

ENDS

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