Philip Field was of course axed for daring to suggest he stand as an independent rather than for his corruption. To this day Labour has never said anything officially about Philip Field other than they respect the judgement of the court.
Meanwhile Labour are spinning and leaking the draft A-G report into Jones and Cunliffe like a top…not a good sign that he is cleared.
Liu was considered a high-risk gambler by the DIA’s casino monitoring division because of his volatility, high-stakes gambling and history of self-barring, the Herald was told.
A DIA spokesman confirmed that Liu was of interest. “Mr Liu is one of a number of gamblers of significance whom the department has discussed in its interaction with SkyCity”.
Liu’s gambling also attracted the attention of the police. That interest was at times intense and included surveillance, a source told the Herald. “The focus was to see whether evidence of money laundering could be detected.” No charges have been laid.
… so Liu was being watched by the DIA and police for potentially laundering money – as well as his immigration issues – but Jones still approved citizenship.
Has Labour only just googled this stuff?
It is also interesting that apart from claiming that he would be executed he also claimed membership of Falun Gong. There is a little problem with given his propensity for gambling. Falun Gong prohibits gambling so his claim to be a member (which Jones appears to have accepted) seems a bit convenient:
As part of its emphasis on ethical behavior, Falun Gong’s teachings prescribe a strict personal morality for practitioners, which includes abstention from smoking, drugs, gambling, premarital or extramarital sex, and homosexuality.
In Australia the news has all been about dodgy politicians, corrupt union leaders, rorts, frauds and other corrupt behaviour. In each State they have an Independent Commission Against Corruption, and they are very effective and since being established have been run off their feet dealing with corruption. So much so that there are now valid calls for a Federal Independent Commission Against Corruption.
In New Zealand we have a similar stench pervading our halls of power now. Winston Peters donations, constant Electoral law breaches by Labour mostly, The Bill Liu case, Philip Field, Kim Dotcom…then there are the dodgy activities and strange financial arrangements of many of our unions.
The only overriding concern I have heard from politicians is how such an organisation could be funded under out tight fiscal constraints…personally I don’t think that we can afford not to have one.:
The debate over allegations of misbehaviour by our federal politicians has an important subtext. Does Australia have the right laws and institutions in place to deal with accusations of corruption, including misuse of travel entitlements and electoral fraud?
Unfortunately, we do not. The lack of a national anti-corruption body means that dishonesty and breaches of public trust by parliamentarians and Commonwealth agencies may never be detected, let alone addressed.
Improving the accountability of our politicians has focused on the idea of a new code of conduct. Such codes usually amount to grand statements about how politicians ought to behave. They are generally unenforceable, except through the actions of other politicians.
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Although there is no harm in having a code of conduct for the federal Parliament, it is likely to be ineffective.
The federal opposition has understandably been critical of a new code of conduct. What has been surprising is that they have not taken the lead in arguing for stronger mechanisms to oversee the work of parliamentarians and public servants. The running on this has instead been left to the Greens, who late last week reinvigorated their 2010 bill in the federal Parliament to establish Australia’s first national anti-corruption body.
The Greens’ bill would create a national integrity commissioner responsible for preventing and fighting corruption by parliamentarians and in federal agencies. At present, such anti-corruption powers are held nationally by the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity, which can examine only bodies such as the Australian Federal Police.
David Shearer is in full damage control mode and dancing on the head of a pin in trying to explain the actions of Shane Jones in the Bill Liu affair. Unfortunately if you are explaining you are losing:
Labour leader David Shearer says he has received assurances from Shane Jones that he followed due process in granting citizenship to Bill Liu, also known as Yong Min Yan, when he was associate immigration minister.
Yan is currently on trial on four counts of fraudulently using documents to gain access to New Zealand and one count of making a false statement.
Last week the court was told that Yan boasted to immigration officials that he had MP friends who would ensure he got citizenship.
Shearer today said he would not stand Jones down from his responsibilities.
After hearing the allegations, which he took seriously, he had spoken to Jones and sought the assurances.
Over the weekend he had talked to other MPs who were aware of the issues involved and he had also reviewed the information Jones had at the time.
“Having looked at the material we have available, it appears that the process which Yong Min Yan (Bill Liu) was granted citizenship was considered and proper.”
He said Labour did not have access to departmental files, but was relying on information retained by Jones about the case.
Jones had denied any pecuniary association with Liu.
“He has received no money, gift or travel.”
“Shane is not a friend of Mr Liu. He believes he has met him on one or two occasions.”
So $8,000 was donated to Dover, from someone living at the address registered to a staff member in Shane Jones’ office.
It is obvious Shane Jones approved the citizenship because his very good mate Dover Samuels asked him to do so. Just as Damien O’Connor used to grant residency to almost anyone Taito Philip Field asked him to. Dover was a beneficiary of donations from Liu, as were other MPs. Was Jones aware of this? Was Jones aware that Liu’s restaurant had hosted fundraisers which can bring in tens of thousands of dollars, none of which gets disclosed as they count as coming from each individual who attended.
From what I understand about this story there is likely to be a resignation unless Labour goes all Philip Field again. My good Labour sources tell me that Annette King is advising to tough it out. I hope Labour and the MP concerned does that, it will mean weeks of headlines.
If a Labour Mp was going to get snapped for indiscriminate rooting I would have picked The Mangrove, but since the victim here is apparently a bloke it can’t be him. Unless he has turned.
Good grief. If we had all believed Phil Goff and his muck-raking troll Pete Hodgson we should now be seeing a by-election in Botany. Unfortunately for Labour and its schemers they were a long, long way short on this one.
In fact if you compare the $500 odd that Pansy Wong has to pay back with say…Clayton Cosgrove and his magical missing suits at $1000 a pop, three in a year, or Chris Carter and his astounding and prolific travel arrangement you have to really wonder if it shouldn’t be Labour politicians falling on their swords.
The reports reviews the total subsided international air travel since 2003. For Pansy Wong it is $27,000 against the average for an MP of $60,000. And Sammy Wong’s travel is also below the average for a spouse – $26,000 against the average of $49,000.
What I want to know now is which MPs and their spouses are above the average…we should be looking very very closely at their expenses. If Pansy Wong is found to have breached and she and her husband are less than average spenders then pure mathematics suggests that the ones that are above average are probably breaching a whole lot more.
Phil Goff, desperate to salvage some dignity, has of course labelled the report a whitewash. Perhaps we should remind him of what a whitewash really looks like, it was called the Ingram report and was used by Labour, Helen Clark and Philip Field to claim it exonerated the now incarcerated , convicted corrupt Labour politician.
I would expect to see the Labour Party now trotting off to the high court in the morning seeking to lift the veil of secrecy that is now smearing every candidate in South Auckland and in particular in Papatoetoe.
Labour still has to apologise for supporting, to the bitter end, the career of Taito Philip Field, they have only so far acknowledged the verdict of the court. The court which found the former Labour minister and MP guilty of corruption and perjury. They only cut Field loose when he suggested he might go independent.
Though is it any wonder that Labour finds themselves in this predicament when their own leader (pro-tem) has authorised on their website a sign from the 70s suggesting to Vote…and Vote Labour again?
Labour and by default Len Brown have a real credibility issue in the final week of the campaign. They appear, by using weasel words and excuses to be aiding and abetting even more electoral fraud.
They need to do something really rather drastic to recover their shattered image. There is an old adage about Labour’s “get out the vote” strategy, and that is they like to get their people to vote early and to vote often. That certainly looks like the case here. All campaign the Labour and Len Brown spin weasels have been talking up their “get out the vote” strategy in South Auckland and just this week the media have been noticing that South Auckland appears to have voted early.
The spin weasels will be working over-time tonight for sure. The evidence has been building and has now become overwhelming that Labour has a systemic culture of corruption.