Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Playing the person rather than playing the ball

Irrigation New Zealand called out for playing the person rather than playing the ball

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Media Release for immediate release: Rōpere Consulting Limited

Peter Fraser, Principal - Rōpere Consulting, and author of the Fish and Game commissioned report Economic Review of Wairarapa Water's Application for Stage 2 (Feasibility) Funding from the Irrigation Acceleration Fund expressed dismay regarding the behaviour of Irrigation New Zealand's Chief Executive Andrew Curtis regarding a Tweet posted by Irrigation New Zealand labelling Mr Fraser 'a shonky economist'.

The tweet, posted on 21 September, read as follows:

@irrigationNZ - @fishandgame pay shonky economist to criticise storage project but forgot it feasibility study to explore options (with link to Stuff article)

"It is disappointing - but unfortunately not surprising - that Irrigation New Zealand has descended into gutter tactics of 'playing the person', rather than 'playing the ball'. In addition to be being unprofessional and unnecessary, personal attacks are just distasteful" Mr Fraser said.

Mr Fraser further explained that he phoned Mr Curtis to request that the tweet be deleted. A belligerent Mr Curtis not only refused to do so but stated Mr Fraser was indeed 'a shonky economist who wrote shonky reports'.

"Look, I'm not expecting Irrigation New Zealand to like what I say, but I do expect a level of maturity that permits an informed debate - rather than ritual histrionics. The simple point is Mr Curtis has had the Wairarapa Report for over a week - and my previous work on the Ruataniwha for over two years - and in neither case has he made a single statement of substance, identified an error of fact, or an error in interpretation regarding my work; and I suspect that if there was one I would know about it by now. It therefore seems that Mr Curtis talks a big game but is unable to deliver" Mr Fraser said.

Mr Fraser also noted that one of the advantages of Twitter is that it has rules against abusive and defamatory behaviour by members, so the offending tweet was quickly removed after Mr Fraser reported it. Mr Fraser also noted in the week it was posted the tweet attracted precisely zero shares and only one 'like' - and that was from someone in Texas.

"Whilst Mr Curtis's statements are clearly defamatory, on balance, I suspect they have actually strengthened my credibility and professional reputation, of which I am thankful - indeed, Mr Curtis's criticisms are a perverse type of affirmation, so I suppose I should really thank him for that" Mr Fraser said. "Nevertheless, I will be writing to Irrigation NZ Chair Nicky Hyslop expressing my disappointment at Mr Curtis's unbecoming behaviour and request that he reconsider his approach to dealing with people who may not happen to agree with him".

"At the end of the day, unsubstantiated name calling is inappropriate behaviour for children and it is most definitely inappropriate behaviour for a chief executive leading an industry advocacy organisation" Mr Fraser said.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


R&NTU: KiwiRail strike notices withdrawn following new offer

Strike notices on KiwiRail have been withdrawn. Rail and Maritime Transport Union General Secretary Wayne Butson says following negotiations between the RMTU and KiwiRail, a new offer from KiwiRail will be taken back to union members for ratification... More>>

Banking: Stress Tests Show Strengthening Bank Resilience

The latest stress tests carried out by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Te Pūtea Matua show strengthening resilience in the banking sector and the benefits of continuing to build capital buffers... More>>

Statistics: Building Activity Down In September Quarter
The volume of building activity in New Zealand fell 8.6 percent in the September 2021 quarter, compared with the June 2021 quarter, Stats NZ said today. Residential building activity fell by 6.4 percent in the September 2021 quarter, while non-residential building activity fell 12 percent... More>>

Reserve Bank: Deputy Governor Reflects On Time At RBNZ
Central bankers must continue to look forward to guard against the unpredictable, Deputy Governor Geoff Bascand says in a speech published today. Mr Bascand joined the Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Te Pūtea Matua in 2013 during the aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis... More>>

Xero: Data Reveals ICT Expenditure Key To Small Business Sales Growth
Xero, the global small business platform, today released a new report which shows New Zealand small business ICT expenditure has increased 25 percent compared to pre-pandemic levels - more than the UK (20%) and Australia... More>>

Fonterra: Lifts Forecast Farmgate Milk Price Range And Revises Earnings Guidance At First Quarter Update

Fonterra Co-operative Group today lifted its 2021/22 forecast Farmgate Milk Price range, reported a solid start to the 2022 financial year and revised its earnings guidance... More>>

Canterbury Museum: New Research - Bald Haast's Eagle Feasted On Moa Guts

New Zealand’s extinct Haast’s Eagle (Hieraaetus moorei), the largest known eagle, gulped down viscera like a vulture and may even have been bald, new research suggests... More>>