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Resignation is appropriate says PM

MEDIA STATEMENT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday 1 September 1999

RESIGNATION IS APPROPRIATE SAYS PRIME MINISTER

"I believe David Bale's resignation as Chief Executive of the Lotteries Commission is appropriate," Prime Minister Jenny Shipley said today.

"In March 1998 the Government moved to require Crown agencies to disclose in bands the salaries of senior executives. We believed that taxpayers had a right to know where their money was going.

"The Cabinet's directive was not reflected in the Lotteries Commission's 1998 Annual Report. The commission's explanation for this was that privacy issues relating to the Chief Executive's salary were being explored with the staff concerned.

"The Cabinet's directive placed greater weight on the public's right to know than on the privacy concerns of highly paid executives.

"I regret that Ministers were not advised about his salary package before his current contract was concluded. Had they been consulted, I'm sure they would have offered some free and frank advice on an appropriate salary level.

"I appreciate Mr Bale's contribution to the Lotteries Commission over the last 12 years. But many other senior public officials have also made very significant contributions to New Zealand while being paid far less than this salary," Mrs Shipley said.

ENDS


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