Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Wong in hiding

Two weeks ago, Pansy Wong was forced to resign as a Minister after abusing her Parliamentary travel perks. She immediately took leave from Parliament to avoid answering media questions. Now, two weeks later, she's meant to be back - but instead John Key has told her to stay away for longer, until Speaker Lockwood Smith's inquiry (which has now been extended well into the xmas silly season) is complete.

Key's "justification" is that Wong won't be able to answer questions properly until the Speaker reports, but that's just bullshit - she of all people should know how many trips she has taken and what she did on them. The real reason is that by keeping Wong out of the spotlight, National can preserve its reputation and manage the fallout from whatever is uncovered. The government's desire to manage its image is being put before a fundamental democratic principle: accountability.

This isn't acceptable. Wong should front up and explain to us what she's been doing. If she's not willing to do that, then she's refusing to do her job as a politician, and she should resign.