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The case for Turia to go builds

Tony Ryall National MP

7 November 2001

The case for Turia to go builds

A 'pattern of behaviour' is continuing to emerge about Associate Corrections Minister Tariana Turia, National MP Tony Ryall said today. Information obtained by National under the Official Information Act shows Tariana Turia requested to review the file of 'Inmate C' who wanted her help to 'review/drop [his] charges to manslaughter'.

An email sent by Tariana Turia's Senior Policy Advisor says 'Minister Turia has received a letter from [Inmate C] who is in Kaitoke Prison in Whanganui. The letter....requests opportunity to review/drop charges to manslaughter. Minister has asked if she can look at his file'.

"We don't know if the Minister ever received the file or if the inmates charges were downgraded. But this reinforces a pattern of behaviour that is repeated time and time again by the Associate Minister," Mr Ryall said.

Another email regarding 'Inmate B' from one Corrections staff member to another refers to 'another one from the Associate Minister' and 'not sure what the connection is'.

"Tariana Turia is systematically using her position as Associate Minister of Corrections to make demands and directions to Prison Authorities. This cannot be ignored.

"What is going on in the Beehive? It is unbelievable that the Prime Minister and Minister of Corrections are defending Tariana Turia's actions. Is this what the Prime Minister meant by new standards of behaviour and performance?

"Tariana Turia is in breach of the Cabinet rules on conflicts of interest. Her conduct is extremely serious. Former National MP Ian Revell resigned when he used his MP letterhead to challenge a parking fine and Ella Henry resigned her position as a Human Rights Commissioner over a traffic fine.

"Tariana Turia's misuse of her ministerial position was for far more serious purposes. We are looking at security classifications for inmates, transfers between prisons and now the charges brought against inmates. This cannot be swept under the carpet. Her judgement is not good and she should resign or be sacked," Mr Ryall said.

Ends


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