Dover Samuels

Do we really still need the Maori seats?

The Maori seats are becoming a bit of a joke.

They have the lowest voter turnout, were supposed to be temporary and now after the last election seemingly irrelevant when 19 Maori were elected in general seats.

About the only use I can find for Maori seats is that it parks a whole bunch of Labour votes that might make the difference in general seats like Bay of Plenty, Rotorua and East Cape and sequesters them in irrelevance.

Parliament now has more Maori MPs than ever before, prompting one commentator to question whether Maori seats were still needed.

Nineteen Maori MPs have been elected in general electorates and on party lists. Once the seven Maori seats are included, the total number of MPs who identify as Maori is 26 – up from 21 in 2011.

This means one in five MPs in the new Parliament were Maori, compared to one in seven in the general population.

The National Party’s caucus is 15 per cent Maori, including two MPs likely to be given high-ranking portfolios – Paula Bennett and Hekia Parata.

The growing proportion of Maori in Parliament was met with mixed responses from Maori leaders.  Read more »

Checkers players versus Chess players in politics

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Phil Quin notes that there appear to be many in side Labour who are playing political chess when they are more suited to playing checkers.

Leaked revelations of a dispute between Labour’s Te Tai Tokerau candidate Kelvin Davis and the party’s Head Office over a proposed negative campaign against Hone Harawira and Kim Dotcom have been used as evidence of Davis going rogue.  In truth, the documents show a candidate engaged in nothing more sinister than garden variety electioneering; of trying to win a tough political fight. The tone of the news coverage appears to align with the political objectives of whoever furnished the leaks to begin with: to shut Davis up, and and his campaign operation down.

A more intriguing, as well as troubling, aspect of the leaked emails from Labour’s General Secretary Tim Barnett suggests someone is telling porkies about the party’s Maori seat strategy, not to mention understating its eagerness to figuratively wade in Kim Dotcom’s pool.

In sharp contrast to comments David Cunliffe made as recently as last Tuesday, Barnett prohibits the Labour campaign in Te Tai Tokerau from campaigning against the Internet Mana Party which he casts as a “progressive” ally.  Cunliffe, meanwhile, repeatedly told Radio Live’s Duncan Garner that Labour was “absolutely not” doing a deal with the Internet Mana Party, and that “we are backing Kelvin Davis to win in the North.”  And yet we now know, just a few weeks earlier, Secretary Barnett was telling the Davis campaign team to refrain from “picking fights” with Harawira and Dotcom.  There shouldn’t be any doubt about what Barnett is advocating here: since ‘picking fights’ with opponents is the very stuff of elections, Barnett is effectively instructing Davis to ‘run dead’ rather than actually campaign to win in Te Tai Tokerau.

At best, this suggests Mr Barnett does not stand by his leader’s oft-repeated mantra that Labour intends to contest all seven Maori seats, including Te Tai Tokerau.  At worst, it calls into question whether any such strategy ever existed.

We are witnessing yet more attempts at three dimensional chess by people far better suited to checkers.

Read more »

Abandoning ship is a better option than rearranging the deckchairs

Long term Labour supporters and even former ministers and MPs are quietly abandoning the formerly good ship Labour.Some are not so quietly doing, like Dover Samuels, who took it upon himself to ring Radio LIve and tell the listeners that he has had enough.

Former Labour minister Dover Samuels says he won’t be voting for the party at the election.

He cited the party’s opposition to the Puhoi to Wellsford extension and Leader David Cunliffe’s “prima donna grandstanding” over the issue of sexual violence.

The former Maori Affairs Minister who now serves on the Northland Regional Council confirmed the Herald this morning he did not intend giving his party vote to Labour.

“Labour’s moved away from me, I’ve never moved away from Labour. I’m as staunch of the principles of Labour as I ever was, since the days of Mickey Savage.”

He indicated he would be voting for NZ First.

“Winston Peters has been somebody that certainly has been an advocate of the regions and I’m a regional councillor and I find that spokespersons for the Labour Party have really turned their backs on some of the initiatives that the Northland Council have been advocating.”    Read more »

Good on ya Dover

Dover Samuels says the dud judge who let off the royal ratbag with a discharge without conviction has ‘cultural hypnosis’.

A judge who discharged the Maori King’s son without conviction is suffering from “cultural hypnosis”, former Maori Affairs Minister Dover Samuels says.

Korotangi Paki, 19, pleaded guilty in the Auckland District Court yesterday to drink driving, two counts of burglary and one of theft.

Judge Philippa Cunningham discharged Paki without conviction on all charges but imposed a special condition that he provide the court evidence he did not have an alcohol problem or if he did, that he had addressed it with counselling.

Paki’s lawyer, Paul Wicks QC, told the court a conviction would impede his ability to accede to the throne.

Samuels told Radio New Zealand this morning the judge’s decision should not have taken into account Paki’s royal status. Read more »

Winston Peters, Maori TV and the stitch up

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One thing certain about Winston Raymond Peters is that he never lets facts stand in the way of a good story.

Let’s take the recent case of the allegedly dodgy Maori trust Te Roopu Taurima O Manukau Trust.

Winston Peters raced out with a story in May, which by sheer coincidence happened to coincide with a so-called investigative report on Maori TV’s Native Affairs. All of this came about because a couple of fellas recently fired from the trust have decided to “get back” at the trust.

What better way to “get back” at the trust than to claim dodgy dealings and paint themselves as honest, caring whistle-blowers, and say that the only reason they were sacked was because when they tried to tell the CEO Malcolm Robson about misspending, Robson wasn’t interested.

As with all employment relations disputes where ex-employees think they’re in for a cash win-fall, the company has to play a straight bat. Robson, told Native Affairs in a statement that the employees were dismissed as a result of a pre-existing employment investigation involving “suspected breaches of employment conditions…” and that “there will be no comment on specific allegations or the individuals involved while the investigation is active.”

Sounds fair enough when you know someone’s keen on trying to extort seek a pay-out.   Read more »

Evidence mounting

Jared Savage in the NZ Herald reveals more information about the dodgy decision to fast track Bill Liu’s citizenship by ministers and MPs in the Labour party.

I can’t hardly wait for the report of the Auditor-General:

Emails obtained under the Official Information Act reveal a senior Immigration NZ investigator wrote to Mr Ross after learning of the decision.

Russell Ogilvy asked whether Mr Ross recommended that citizenship be declined and whether he had told Mr Jones “to speak with his own department regarding the decision”.

Mr Jones was the Acting Internal Affairs Minister in this case but also the Associate Immigration Minister.

“The minister was advised of both the pending police and INZ investigations,” responded Mr Ross.

Despite his recommendation, Mr Jones granted citizenship subject to Mr Liu taking the oath of allegiance.

Mr Ogilvy then asked Mr Ross to tell him when the citizenship ceremony would be held.

The emails also reveal that Mr Jones granted Mr Liu an urgent private ceremony at the request of Labour MP Dover Samuels, despite the advice of another DIA official that he did not meet the criteria.

Mr Samuels also wrote three earlier letters lobbying for Mr Liu’s citizenship application.

The VIP ceremony was held in a room at Parliament days after Mr Jones’ decision in his favour.

The next day he applied for an urgent passport, then changed his name to William Yan.

 

The Three Amigos

While the Auditor-General continues to look into the Bill Liu affair and the involvement of Shane Jones it might be useful Shane’s Facebook photos to see the light of day.

Given he’s under investigation for his connection with Bill Liu, it’s quite fascinating that 3 of the folk in this cosy Facebook picture are all involved in the same citizenship for cash scandal.

Rick Barker
Dover Samuels
Shane Jones

I’ve taken the liberty of adding some speech bubbles:

Random Impertinent Questions

With the Prime Minister now talking openly about stripping Yong Ming Yan/Bill Liu/Yang Liu of his citizenship:

The Prime Minister says New Zealand citizenship could be stripped from a mysterious Chinese millionaire who obtained a New Zealand passport despite multiple identities.

But it would require the use of special discretionary powers.

Everyone knows that “Yong Ming Yan” or “Bill Liu” isn’t who he says he is.

It’s now an open secret he uses a variety of different names, identities and aliases, including to obtain a New Zealand passport, and he was helped by his friends in the Labour Party.

Despite this, he still remains a New Zealand citizen. So the question is: does this damage the integrity of the Kiwi passport?

“That’s probably the reason why this matter is now before the Auditor General and clearly Shane Jones has got some big questions to answer,” says Prime Minister John Key.

It isn’t just Shane Jones that needs to answer some questions as well. But before he answers those questions he needs to sit down Shane Jones and get to Dover Samuels and Rick Barker and ask them the following questions…and not just take their fob off answers…he needs to really dig down intot he questions in case they come back to bite him on the arse.

So what are those questions he needs to ask?

  • Did Dover Samuels, Rick Barker and Shane Jones ever receive any donation to or for their campaign/election accounts? If so were they declared?
  • Have they received any payments either directly or indirectly via close relatives into an account controlled by themselves or controlled by a close relative?
  • If such payments were received were they declared to IRD, the Electoral Commission and/or other statutory authorities?
If I were David Shearer I would be wanting proper answers to those questions.

Smelly as a smelly thing

NZ Herald

The Bill Liu/Yong Ming affair is getting smellier and smellier. You rally have to wonder how much money this guy gave to Labour to get the sort of pretection he did:

Seven government agencies wanted to join a raid on Metropolis tower apartments owned by a wealthy Chinese businessman later granted citizenship in controversial circumstances.

A search warrant was executed on the apartments owned by Bill Liu – also known as Yang Liu, Yong Ming Yan and now William Yan – on the 35th floor of the tower in Auckland in June 2007.

Officers took more than an hour to search individual rooms, such were their size.

He was under investigation by the Department of Labour for immigration fraud at the time and documents released under the Official Information Act show that other law enforcement agencies wanted to be part of any raid at the property.

The police were going to execute the warrant with Immigration officers alone – until approached by the Ministry of Fisheries, the Department of Internal Affairs, Customs, the Serious Fraud Office and the Inland Revenue Department.

Eventually, the group decided that 13 investigators from the police, Immigration, Customs, IRD and Internal Affairs would search the Metropolis apartments and cars.

“The number of staff reflected the size of the residential area to be searched – five units in a hotel and three vehicles,” according to documents released by Immigration New Zealand.

However, “no documents were seized and/or evidence retained as a result of the search warrant.”

Mr Yan later complained, through his lawyer, that customs officials stepped outside the authority of the warrant by taking photographs inside the apartment.

The raid happened at the same time as Labour MP David Cunliffe, the Immigration Minister at the time, was considering an application from officials to have Mr Yan’s residency revoked.

The grounds for revocation were that he had failed to disclose the Yong Min Yang identity, the fact that he was married in Australia and was wanted by the Chinese authorities on an alleged fraud.

Mr Cunliffe declined to revoke his residency and asked officials to continue investigating the potential immigration fraud.

The following year, Mr Yan was granted New Zealand citizenship by Labour Party minister Shane Jones against the advice of officials that he did not meet the good character test, because he had two passports with two names and two birthdates, and was wanted in China for an alleged large-scale fraud.

Coincidences

Earlier I posted a video about the Uruwera raids, and the rewriting of history.

This was a coincidence.

The real reason I was hunting through the archives, was to remind myself what happened with Taito Phillip Field and his ‘helping’ people with immigration issues.

It’s a lot like the Bill Liu/Shane Jones case.

Liu was also ‘helped’ by a series of Labour MPs.

And on review, the two cases are more similar than I remembered.

  • Immigrant gets unexpected ‘help’,
  • The Party Leader says the MP wants an inquiry to clear name
  • Narrow inquiry into process ‘clears’ MP
  • Dover Samuels defends and supports MP accused of corruption

So many coincidences…