Parliament

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

 

PM responsible for inquiry breaching press freedom

21 August 2013

Prime Minister responsible for inquiry breaching press freedom

Breaches of press freedom were inevitable when the Prime Minister set up an inquiry to investigate a leak to a journalist with no boundaries set on what information could be obtained, Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman said today.

Parliament’s privileges committee this morning held public hearings into how a journalist and a MP's records were sought by John Key’s inquiry.

“The Prime Minister ordered an inquiry into a leak involving a journalist but did not set any constraints on that inquiry in terms of seeking the journalist’s information,” Dr Norman said.

“The inquiry was the Prime Minister’s beast, he gave it his prey’s scent, let it off its leash and was surprised when it started hunting.”

The Chief Executive of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Andrew Kibblewhite and Prime Minister John Key’s Chief of Staff Wayne Eagleson appeared this morning and told the committee they were surprised that journalist Andrea Vance’s information was sought by the David Henry inquiry.

“Andrew Kibblewhite and Wayne Eagleson today told MPs and the public to believe that an inquiry set up to find out how a journalist got a report would not seek information about the journalist,” Dr Norman said.

“The Prime Minister’s left and right hand men were surprised the inquiry set up to find out how a journalist got a report might seek information about that journalist.

“What is surprising is that the inquiry was set up with no boundaries about what information it could or could not access.

“David Henry, who led the inquiry, told the committee it was up to others to authorise the release of the journalist’s emails and phone calls and he has a point.

“Not only did the Prime Minister’s closest staff fail to ensure the inquiry was set up in a way that would not breach press freedoms or the privacy of an MP, but Wayne Eagleson authorised the release of information.

“The Henry inquiry was given everything it asked for and had no constraints on what it could seek. There was also a clear failure in that information was provided that should not have been.

“No one responsible for setting up this botched inquiry is taking responsibility. The one man who has resigned, head of Parliamentary Service Geoff Thorn, appears to have been the only one raising concerns about what was being sought.

“John Key should apologise and take responsibility for what happened under his authorisation.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On DHB Deficits And Free Trade

Currently the world is looking on aghast at the Trump administration’s plans to slash Obamacare, mainly in order to finance massive tax changes that will deliver most of their gains to the wealthy. Lives will be lost in the trade-off. Millions of Americans stand to lose access to the healthcare they need.

Spot the difference with New Zealand, where DHBs are under intense pressure to reduce deficits within a climate of chronic underfunding. More>>

 
 

Greens' Response: Slum-Like Rentals Exposed In Renting Review

“...The grim findings of the review are a wakeup call about the true state of rentals in this country. Too many renters are festering in slum-like conditions under the thumb of landlords who have largely unchecked powers and ignore tenants’ complaints when it suits them.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And Times Of Peter Dunne

The unkind might talk of sinking ships, others could be more reminded of a loaded revolver left on the desk by his Cabinet colleagues as they closed the door behind them, now that the polls in Ohariu had confirmed he was no longer of much use to National. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>

ALSO:

Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>

ALSO:

Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election