Serious questions of probity regarding the appointment of Wally Haumaha as Deputy Police Commissioner must be answered by Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters, National’s Police spokesperson Chris Bishop says.

“This appointment is being called into question, not only because of Mr Haumaha’s highly disappointing comments about serious allegations made against fellow police officers which the Police Minister says he wasn’t aware of, but also because of his close ties to the Acting Prime Minister and NZ First.

“It was today confirmed Mr Haumaha was selected to run as a candidate for NZ First in the 2005 General Election.

“Given both of these issues it’s clear that there are potential issues of probity and conflicts of interest regarding his promotion under a Labour-NZ First Government.

“Mr Peters must explain whether he disclosed this conflict at Cabinet given Mr Haumaha was once a candidate of his party, and how this conflict was managed during the appointment process.

“He must also explain his completely inappropriate appointment of NZ First MP, and former party official, Tracey Martin as the minister in charge of the inquiry.

“Mr Peters needs to explain how the public can now have confidence that the inquiry will be independent, robust and transparent.

“These questions, and the questions put to Police Minister Stuart Nash last week, must be addressed by the Government if the public is to have any trust in its processes and to ensure the hard-earned reputation of our police force isn’t tarnished.”

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