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Morgan Say Peters Must Front up to Voters

Morgan Say Peters Must Front up to Voters

Our corrupt political system is again turning the New Zealand election into a dirty game of “he said, she said”, as Establishment parties ignore serious policy debate.

The latest instalment is the feigned outrage of Winston Peters, claiming it was politically compliant public servants who leaked details of his NZ Superduper payment to the National Government, who in turn, passed it on to the media.

The Opportunities Party agrees that this issue highlights the corruption of the “no surprises” convention introduced by Labour’s Helen Clark, and continued under this National Government. We think it’s an atrocious intrusion from partisan politics into our democratic processes, and absolutely compromises the cherished sanctity of citizens’ privacy. That’s why TOP’s “Democracy Reset” policy will restore impartiality to the Public Service, so they serve the public first, and their political masters second.

TOP doesn’t believe it was National who leaked Mr Peters’ private information – there’s just no evidence to whip up such a conspiracy. Nor are we saying the original overpayment was anything more than a genuine mistake.

However, the incident has highlighted an outdated welfare system, in which a man as wealthy as Mr Peters, doesn’t even notice a $60.00 pw over payment, while for thousands of struggling families, such a sum would be life-changing.

With media reports now suggesting Mr Peters may have refused to disclose his domestic status to MSD, not just once, but on numerous occasions (maybe up to 7 times), Winston is looking decidedly shonky on this matter. He needs to clear up the confusion by waiving his rights to privacy in regards to his NZ Super and MSD relationship, and confirm that it hasn’t been an annual ritual for him to declare that he’s single and not co-habitating.

For Mr Peters to now cry foul on matters of privacy is the height of hypocrisy when he has for weeks, been using records of private text messages between Bill English and National’s Clutha Southland electorate secretary, purely to advance his own political ends.

Mr Peters has refused to say where he obtained those phone records.

TOP and the New Zealand public demand Winston Peters demonstrates the same accountability that he’s demanding of others. To not do so, is to confirm that Peters is the master of double standards, with a lust for conspiracy theories that dwarfs his own morality.

As the only MP ever convicted of misleading Parliament, Mr Peters cannot expect a “trust me” attitude to be afforded him. He’s proven he’s not up to that standard. Whilst his potential bedfellows, Labour and National, seem reluctant to criticise him, (funny that) TOP simply invites him to open his books and prove he isn’t a benefit fraudster who undertakes annual denials of his true beneficiary status.

These issues may simply not matter to those who are struggling to fight the systemic inequality in our society, and are looking for more than pork barrel bribes and vague promises of “reviews” to make real change in their lives. But Mr Peters has been a feature of the political furniture for so long now, and must bear some responsibility for the inability of establishment parties to do anything but screw lower income families. He certainly can’t cry foul and play the innocent victim on his super overpayment without coming clean on his own actions first. It’s just not credible to make the same mistake as many as seven times.

Oh, and while you are at it Winston, could you explain how you intend to fund the approximately $30 billion worth of pork barrel promises you’ve made to date on the campaign trail? The sheer size of the overspend implies a 50% rise in income tax will be required for you to honour your pledges. Yeah right.


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