[Sitting date: 16 October 2012. Volume:684;Page:5809. Text is incorporated into the Bound Volume.]
GRANT ROBERTSON (Deputy Leader—Labour) to the
Prime Minister: Does he have confidence in Hon John Banks; if so, why?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister)
: Yes; because he is a hard-working Minister.
Grant Robertson: Is it still his policy, as he told media on 30 April this year, that a Minister who lies or misleads about his actions would lose his confidence as Prime Minister?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY: Yes.
Grant Robertson: Does he think Mr Banks has met this standard, after he told the
New Zealand Herald
on 14 September that the police were responsible for his witness statement being withheld when, in fact, it was he who asked for it to be withheld?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY: I have no knowledge of that. That is a matter for the Minister.
Grant Robertson: I seek the leave of the House to table a letter from David P H Jones QC, Mr Banks’ lawyer, to the New Zealand Police, dated 10 August 2012, which says that disclosure of any material relating to Mr Banks is opposed.
Mr SPEAKER: Leave is sought to table that document. Is there any objection? There is no objection.
Document, by leave, laid on the Table of the House.
Grant Robertson: Why is he hanging on to John Banks as a Minister, when sworn witness statements of others, and Mr Banks’ own actions, show that he has lied to New Zealanders, or is the Prime Minister simply prepared to put his own political interests ahead of the high ethical standards New Zealanders expect of Ministers?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY: Because I accept the member’s word that he has complied with the law.