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Serious Allegations From Nicola Willis Require Government Inquiry

Taxpayers will be alarmed that the Minister of Finance has said the new Government has discovered “nasty financial surprises” despite Ruth Richardson’s Fiscal Responsibility Act that was specifically designed to avoid the exact situation the new Government appears to be in.

“Ms Willis is not prone to Winston Peters-style rhetoric so her comments are particularly alarming” says Jordan Williams, a spokesman for the Taxpayers’ Union.

“Given Treasury’s role to prepare the Pre-election Fiscal and Economic Update, it is inexcusable for a government to be greeted by economic surprises.

“We need to cut through political claims and point scoring and get to the bottom one way or another. It is becoming clear that Treasury has dropped the ball and we urgently need an updated assessment of the objective state of the books over and above HYFEU, due by the end of the year.

“A government inquiry, or at minimum, a select committee inquiry with the ability to call under oath the former Minister of Finance, and Treasury officials is called for. If the books are in the state Nicola Willis claims, clearly there has been a major failing within our public finance institutions. As well as getting to the truth, Wellington need to learn the lessons, if we are not to return to the 1980-style politicisation of public accounts.”

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