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Urgent action needed to protect NZ's integrity


  • Urgent action needed to protect NZ's integrity

    Muddied political party funding, the dominance of Cabinet and a weakening public service have been criticised in a major new report by Transparency International. The Government's failure to ratify the United Nations Convention against Corruption was also slammed in the Integrity 2013 report released this week.

    The report said serious and urgent action is needed to protect and extend integrity in New Zealand. It calls for Parliament's administration to be subject to the Official Information Act, and for a code of conduct for MPs.

    The report slates the lack of transparency around lobbying and the high concentration of power in Cabinet, and raises concerns about the way key Government appointment are made.

    The report also charges that:
    • Ministerial accountability for the effectiveness of policies is weak.
    • The public service does not provide systematic analysis and information on the impact of policies.
    • The Government has been slow to implement international policies and laws for deterring bribery and corruption.
    • It has concerns about how political parties raise and spend money, including parliamentary funding of parties.
    • Low membership and and low public trust undermines legitimacy of political parties.
    • The Electoral Commission has limited ability to respond to concerns about party finances.

    Wellingtonian of the Year Suzanne Snively, who chairs Transparency International New Zealand, said the report showed that by international standards, there was very little corruption in New Zealand. But weaknesses highlighted in the last report in 2003 remained.

    Commenting last week on Transparency International ranking New Zealand and Denmark as the least corrupt countries in the world, Justice Minister Judith Collins said: "This reflects the integrity of our system and the people who work in it."

    One of New Zealand's biggest assets internationally was its reputation for being corruption-free.

    Credit: Hank Schouten-Faifax News

    • Vince Siemer
      Vince Siemer commented
      Editing a comment
      The corruption in New Zealand is being covered up by the local chapter of Transparency International and Suzanne Snively is at the heart of it. I complained to TI in Germany earlier this month that Ms Snively was promoting her consultancy business through a fictitious company trading on the Transparency International name. The German head office responded with an admission the company Snively was promoting was non-existent and that she had agreed to stop but referred me to Ms Snively to answer questions on TI's policy of chapter officers financially trading on the TI brand!!
      "Very little corruption"? I find it incredible what some of the worst offenders expect us to believe.

    • golfa
      golfa commented
      Editing a comment
      Some more on NZ's "Transparency" International today .....

    • Corrigenda
      Corrigenda commented
      Editing a comment
      One NZ PM was only a farmer's wife when she entered Parliament. When she left several years later she featured on NBR Rich List. IMO you don't earn that sort of money honestly!!
      Last edited by Corrigenda; 30-12-2013, 03:54 PM. Reason: sp
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