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Labour Playing Games Over Wellington Hospital

Wellington Central MP Richard Prebble says Labour's health spokesperson, less than three months from an election, cannot rewrite history. "When Labour's Graham Kelly persuaded Bill English that he should move the main Wellington hospital to Kenepuru, not one Labour MP in Wellington, Annette King included, made any public or, to my knowledge, private representation opposing the proposal," Mr Prebble said.

"I know how the Labour party works and I have no doubt that Graham Kelly would never have put forward the proposal without the support of his party.

"Michael Cullen the deputy leader of the Labour party, at a debate just three weeks ago in front of the Wellington Chamber of Commerce, left the meeting with the impression that if a Labour government was elected, Kenepuru was the likely site.

"Labour is trying to say one thing in Porirua and the Hutt Valley and now Annette King is trying to say something different in Wellington Central.

"I would like to know from Annette King what she thinks of her coalition ally the Alliance's promise to build three "full public hospitals at Kenepuru Hutt and Wellington".

"Could Annette King inquire as to whether this means, as Ms Bunkle's statement implies, that in Kenepuru and the Hutt, the hospital will be doing heart surgery, kidney transplants and other high cost speciality medicine?

"There is not a medical professional in the county who would support such a proposal. Labour is under an obligation to say that Wellington can only afford one such hospital.

"I draw it to the attention of the people of Wellington that Labour's games on the hospital site are part of the reason why children with cancer in Wellington may now have to go to Auckland and Christchurch for treatment.

"All that the Labour MPs have achieved is a 18 month delay in achieving the go-ahead for a new tertiary hospital in Wellington which we needed yesterday, and the only sensible site is where the other complementary specialist medical facilities are located - in Newtown."


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