Dec 22, 2007

Herald Editorial Agrees With Fran

It gets worse for the government. Instead of being forgotten in the pre-Christmas rush, the Curran report is getting close scrutiny. The NZ Herald Editorial today is worth a read. Overall it is suggesting a whitewash. We quote its final sentences as it raises big questions about Parker's motivation, and also about the state of the public service.

"Mr Parker certainly made the correct noises after mentioning Ms Curran to officials. But subsequent developments do not sustain the argument that his was a passing, non-partisan reference. Contrary to the report's finding, they point more towards orchestration of the appointment of a political ally who contributed to a political agenda.

Nor do those developments suggest the independence of the public service was uppermost in most minds, including those of the unnamed officials who failed even to recognise the implications. Doubtless Mr Logan's resignation shortly before the report's release was meant to create the perception that someone was paying a penalty. He, however, was not even at the ministry when Ms Curran was hired. The reality is that, at virtually every turn in this affair, the public service has been ill-served."

At The Hive we are hearing more noise suggesting the SSC boss Prebble is now mortally wounded, and that the Ministry for the Environment itself might be fighting for survival. This instability and continuing scandal is not what the Government needs at the start of election year.