Thursday, October 15, 2020

"Entirely separate"

When two people whose identities we all know but cannot say publicly due to name suppression were charged with "Obtaining by Deception" over routing donations to NZ First through the NZ First Foundation, Winston Peters claimed his party had been exonerated because "The Foundation is an entirely separate entity from the New Zealand First Party". In which case, maybe he'd like to explain why the latter is being briefed on its financials and treating the money as their own?

NZ First leader Winston Peters and high-ranking MPs were briefed about the NZ First Foundation's expenses and activities one year before it first made headlines, Stuff can reveal, contradicting Peters' consistent claims the foundation had nothing to do with his political party.

Stuff has seen an internal party report that, according to a source familiar with the matter, was presented to Peters in November 2018.


The report referenced money in NZ First Party’s Kiwibank account as well as money in the Foundation's ASB bank account. It totalled expenses incurred by the ASB account and classed them as party costs.

Which sounds a lot like this entity isn't "separate" at all, but effectively owned and controlled by the party. Which makes you wonder how long the two people charged will stick it out facing seven years for obtaining by deception before rolling on Winston to get two years for a corrupt electoral practice?