The terms of reference of the inquiry into the appointment of Wally Haumaha as Deputy Police Commissioner do not go far enough and as a result the inquiry is likely to be a $150,000 waste of time, National’s Police spokesperson Chris Bishop says.
“The inquiry was announced by Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters over three weeks ago following revelations that Mr Haumaha had made highly disappointing comments about serious allegations made against his friends in the New Zealand Police.
“Twenty-four days after the inquiry was announced we finally have a Chair and terms of reference, but the inquiry won’t come close to getting to the nub of the issue.
“The inquiry avoids the two central issues in this whole debacle – what did Police Commissioner Mike Bush know about Mr Haumaha’s comments? And secondly, what were Police Minister Stuart Nash and Cabinet told?
“Instead the inquiry focuses on the State Services Commission.
“Hanging over the inquiry is the issue of whether Mr Nash and Cabinet would have made a different appointment had they known about Mr Haumaha’s comments. That too is ignored.
“The inquiry also avoids looking into the potential conflicts of interest of Mr Haumaha’s appointment under a Labour-NZ First Government, given he was once selected as a candidate for NZ First to run in the 2005 General Election.
“The appointment of Tracey Martin, a NZ First Minister and party insider, as minister in charge of the inquiry is still wholly inappropriate. If Mr Peters wanted to prove that there was no conflict, surely this inquiry would be his opportunity to put the issue to rest.
“The inquiry will take six weeks at an estimated cost of $150,000, yet it appears New Zealanders won’t be any closer to having answers by the end of it.”