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Spy Checker's Secret Payment

Spy Checker's Secret Payment

Labour is calling on the Prime Minister to release details around the appointment of Justice Andrew McGechan as Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, including how much he is being paid.

“Labour has confidence Justice McGechan can do the job and we don’t believe he would want his salary kept secret,” Labour’s Internal Affairs spokesperson Trevor Mallard says.

“The pay rates of judges are set by Remuneration Authority and made public. There is no reason for Justice McGechan’s remuneration to be kept secret.

“It is particularly important there is transparency around his appointment at a time when public confidence in our spy agencies has been dented.

“After Justice McGechan’s appointment in July, Labour approached the Prime Minister’s office seeking details around his appointment. However, our request was rejected by John Key’s chief of staff Wayne Eagleson on the basis of Justice McGechan’s right to privacy.

“It is fundamentally undemocratic to withhold the pay rate received by the Inspector-General. His salary is paid out of taxpayer money. The considerable public interest outweighs the need to protect Justice McGechan’s privacy in this instance,” Trevor Mallard says.

Labour has complained to the Ombudsman about the lack of transparency from the Prime Minister’s office.

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