Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Collins offered Mapp the job

Back in March, I blogged about Judith Collins' brazen cronyism in appointing Wayne Mapp to the Law Commission. In case you'd forgotten, Collins ignored the normal process and appointed Mapp without considering other candidates the Commission had suggested, and without any formal interviews, person specification, or other process. Her excuse boiled down to "the rules don't apply to me".

But there was an interesting gap in her story: the initial email [PDF] from Mapp to Collins referred to discussions they had had. I was curious, so I asked Collins about these discussions, in an effort to find out whether Mapp had asked for the job or Collins had offered it. This is her response:

The discussions occurred with a view to making an appointment to the Law Commission. They took place prior to the appointment of Dr Mapp [I had been hoping for dates here - pre-election would have been interesting - I/S]. No record was kept of the discussions. I initiated the discussions and I proposed Dr Mapp's nomination.
So there you have it. Collins saw an opening, saw a crony, and matched one with the other, over-riding all proper government processes to do so. She turned an appointment which should have been made on merit into a gift from the Minister - with the full support of John Key.

This is not how government is supposed to operate in New Zealand, and we should not tolerate it.