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Government gags Bush as Haumaha farce rolls on

8 November 2018

The Government’s refusal to release the Wally Haumaha inquiry report that it has had for almost a week has resulted in Police Commissioner Mike Bush refusing to answer questions this morning, Police spokesperson Chris Bishop says.

“Commissioner Bush appeared on behalf of the Police at Select Committee this morning, but refused to answer any questions about the report, Mr Haumaha’s appointment, the bullying allegations against Mr Haumaha and any political ties Mr Haumaha had.

“This meeting was arranged weeks ago. The Government’s cynical move to delay the release of the report until after the hearing is disgraceful and again puts a lie to the commitment the Government will be the most open and transparent in history.

“Every question put to the Commissioner about the report was met with stonewall defence.

“The Commissioner refused to answer any questions about what he knew about Mr Haumaha’s comments in 2004 around Operation Austin, what he said, or didn’t say, to Minister Nash or Prime Minister Ardern around his knowledge, and whether he had confidence in Mr Haumaha.

“Commissioner Bush did reveal Police had taken ‘extensive legal advice’ about who had the power to stand Mr Haumaha down. Mr Bush confirmed that the advice was that it was ‘not him’. This is a direct contradiction to the Prime Minister who has previously described this as an ‘employment matter’ for the Commissioner.

“Mr Bush’s clarification and contradiction of the Prime Minister is welcome. Mr Haumaha was the Prime Minister’s appointment, made on her recommendation to the Governor-General. She must own it, and she must fix this intolerable situation.”

ends

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