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Labour: Delamere sacking

2000 web siteLabour Leader Helen Clark said today that the removal of the immigration portfolio from Tuariki John Delamere was the last nail in the coffin of the tainted National Government. She said this was just another day in the life of a scandal-ridden administration.

Helen Clark dismissed the Prime Minister's decision to strip Mr Delamere of only his immigration job as 'a weak gesture by a dying administration'.

"This fiasco serves to remind the public of what a shambles this National minority government propped up by party-hoppers has been.

"From its inception three long years ago, this National government has been a fraud. It has been propped up by a motley collection of rag-tag parties and party-hopping MPs.

"Mr Delamere's behaviour was beyond the pale. Yet for as long as it was necessary, the Prime Minister was prepared to accept the support of the now disgraced Mr Delamere. With the election just three days away, his last minute removal as immigration minister means nothing. It is a weak and empty gesture.

"It is amazing, in view of the seriousness of Mr Delamere's misdemeanour that he has been sacked from only one portfolio. He retains his other portfolios - Pacific Island Affairs, Public Trust Office, Associate Health and Associate Finance - his ministerial salary, and his limousine, for the small period left of this shoddy government's life. What must he do before the Prime Minister sacks him entirely?

"One puzzling aspect of this fiasco is that Mr Delamere claimed on the Holmes Show tonight that the Prime Minister knew of the matter yesterday. Yet having known of the matter yesterday, she failed to stop Mr Delamere finalising the shoddy deal.

"New Zealand needs a new government which will restore some integrity to the political process and usher in a new era of modesty, frugality and accountability. Labour needs a strong mandate from the voters to lead that fresh new government," Helen Clark said.

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