Key Announces Inquiry into Phillip John Smith Case
John Key’s Remarks on Philip John Smith
In a press conference held in Wellington today, Prime Minister John Key announced there would be an independent government inquiry into the recent escape of Philip John Smith.
Key could not confirm whether the ministerial inquiry will be seeking resignation from any parties implicated in Smith’s escape, Key however did note that the purpose of the inquiry is to establish accountability.
Smith’s escape raises questions about data sharing between the Department of Corrections, Police and Customs, said Key.
Key also pointed out that a person with outstanding student loan debt would trigger customs New Zealand to investigate, yet nothing was triggered when Smith bought a plane ticket in his own name and flew to Chile.
The Department of Corrections is already conducting its own urgent inquiry into how Smith was able to leave the country so easily.
“Five or six agencies are implicated here” said key, and that a “single inquiry would not satisfy the opposition or the public of New Zealand.”
As of yet no one has been appointed to head the inquiry, more details will be announced in cabinet next week.