Independent MP Brendan Horan says he will not pursue a complaint against Winston Peters over his alleged failure to declare his financial interest in racehorse Bellazeel.
A legal threat appears to be behind the climb-down, although Mr Horan also sites a Standing Orders issue. Mr Horan says he has been advised the NZ First leader could have a shot at him for contempt for bringing the issue to the media’s attention and then making a complaint. The independent MP is already on the backfoot after Winston Peters called in lawyers of an interview Mr Horan did with RNZ on Thursday, during which he raised new claims separate to Ballazeel.
Last week Mr Horan told NBR ONLINE he was undecided over pursuing a parliamentary complaint over why Mr Peters did not include his Bellazeel stake in his filing for the registry of MPs’ financial interests.
Sir Maarten Wevers, who oversees the registry, says he cannot look into the matter of his own account. Standing Orders require a formal complaint to be made by an MP.
In a poll of NBR member subscribers between Friday and early Monday morning, 87% of participants said he should press ahead with the complaint.
However, today Mr Horan claims that under Standing Orders he cannot go to the register because he has already made the matter public. NBR is seeking expert clarification on this issue.
None of Winston Peters public statements about the racehorse stand scrutiny.
He said the horse was put out to pasture years ago…it only started racing in 2012 and won a race earlier this year. Read more »