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Dr Pauline Kingi must be immediately stood down as Chair of the inquiry into the appointment of Wally Haumaha as Deputy Police Commissioner following revelations she has endorsed him on LinkedIn 23 times, National’s Police spokesperson Chris Bishop says.

“Dr Kingi has publicly endorsed Mr Haumaha on LinkedIn for 23 skills, including leadership, crime prevention and stakeholder management.

“In fact, she has endorsed him for every skill Mr Haumaha has listed – in some cases she is the only person to have endorsed him for a particular skill.

“Dr Kingi cannot possibly lead an independent inquiry into Mr Haumaha’s appointment.

"There is a clear and unequivocal conflict of interest, and the Government should never have appointed Dr Kingi in the first instance.

“If the Government is truly committed to an independent inquiry, it must stand Dr Kingi down immediately and appoint a new Chair.

“The Government must then look into the process that led to the appointment of Dr Kingi as Chair of the inquiry, which is deeply ironic given the inquiry is looking into the process that led to the appointment of Mr Haumaha as Deputy Police Commissioner.

“It took three weeks for the Government to announce Dr Kingi as the Chair of the inquiry – what were they doing?

“Clearly something is not right in the way this Government does its due diligence and that needs to be urgently addressed.

“This inquiry has been a shambles from the start and nothing about it suggests it will be independent and comprehensive. The Government has some serious explaining to do.”

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