Govt must stop stonewalling riots investigation

The Prime Minister’s insistence that the only inquiry needed into the Parliamentary occupation and riots is an Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) investigation is untenable and unrealistic, National’s Justice spokesperson Paul Goldsmith says.

“New Zealanders saw an unprecedented occupation and trashing of Parliament’s grounds and its surrounding streets, followed by a fiery and riotous conclusion. How did it come to this, is the fundamental question.

“An IPCA investigation is appropriate, but it won’t cover all the aspects that need to be reviewed and it may be many months before we hear anything from it. 

“What about the role of the Speaker? What about the actions from Government Ministers? What can the Police Commissioner tell us about what did and didn’t happen?

“Last week, Labour MPs blocked a Justice select committee briefing from the Police Commissioner, and no realistic alternative has been offered.

“The existence of an IPCA investigation provides no justification for blocking every other form of inquiry. This is basic democratic accountability.

“A Government committed to openness and transparency would welcome scrutiny of such a significant event. What are they trying to hide?”