Coddington on Pullar and Boag

Herald on Sunday

Deborah Coddington lets fly about Bronwyn Pullar and Michelle Boag:

The legs-eleven story this week has been ACC’s carelessness in emailing 6752 clients’ private details to National Party stalwart (some might say nightmare) Bronwyn Pullar. More than 200 of these cases are what is known as sensitive claims, meaning they concern people who have been sexually abused.

Pullar had a history with ACC. Things had reached a point, apparently, where she needed a meeting with senior managers, so former National Party president and friend Michelle Boag sat in as Pullar’s “support person”. We still don’t know for sure who said what to whom, but apparently at that meeting ACC was told about this security breach, alleged threats were made of making that breach public, the words “going forward” were mentioned, and a two-year benefit was discussed.

Now the matter is in the hands of the police, and Privacy Commissioner Marie Schroff has launched an inquiry into the leak.

Furthermore, two dyed-in-the-wool National Party women, not the Opposition, have forced Nick Smith to resign from Cabinet.

With friends like Bronwyn Pullar and Michelle Boag few people actually need enemies.

But back up the truck. What business was it of Pullar’s when she first received files which didn’t concern her? She obviously read them, because we were told she recognised a few of the sexual abuse victims as well-known New Zealanders.

At worst, this is a sorry saga of people who have possibly crossed the line of the law, or the principles of the Privacy Act, because they couldn’t mind their own business. Why didn’t Pullar just give the files back to ACC?

And if, as Boag now claims, the meeting was to assist ACC with security problems, why not go to the Privacy Commissioner, who is empowered to do just that, without taking action against ACC, without going public, without upsetting 6752 ACC clients? Somehow, this excuse from the PR maven doesn’t wash.

Exactly what I have been saying. Michelle Boag didn’t attend that meeting with Bronwyn Pullar as a support person…if she truly wanted a support person why not her fiancé and now husband…no…instead she took Michelle Boag, to put the frighteners on ACC, just like they did to Pullar’s insurance company.

Mary Wilson on Checkpoint interviewed an ACC specialist claimant barrister, unsurprised by the leak, who said he’s been receiving wrong files “regularly” for six years, and immediately sends them back.

The Privacy Act was put in place for good reason – to protect us from Big Brother sharing information. To make ACC claims, under the Privacy Act clients almost have to sign their lives away, allowing the agency to collect personal information from their family doctor and other sources. So this careless leak was a massive breach of trust by ACC.

But in my opinion, Pullar and, by association, Michelle Boag, have compounded that breach by their actions.

Precisely. Coddington has nailed it. Reasonable people hand back information. Unreasonable people keep it for whatever purpose suits their nefarious purposes.


THANK YOU for being a subscriber. Because of you Whaleoil is going from strength to strength. It is a little known fact that Whaleoil subscribers are better in bed, good looking and highly intelligent. Sometimes all at once! Please Click Here Now to subscribe to an ad-free Whaleoil.

  • Peter Wilson

     We still don’t know for sure who said what to whom, but apparently at that meeting ACC was told about this security breach, alleged threats were made…

    Unfortunately, this quote from Coddington leaves her credibility in tatters. She freely admits there is no evidence, but this doesn’t stop her from accusing Pullar/Boag of making threats, so we can take the rest of her diatribe with a grain of salt. And blaming an ACC beneficiary with a head injury for costing Nick Smith his job is a bit sad. Asking for a reference? Just say no, Nick.

    Nearly as bad as Fran O’Sullivan attacking Collins for leaking emails.

    • Hawker

      If Coddingtons credibilty is in tatters (according to you) thats fine and well.

      However her statement ” Why didnt Pullar give back the files to ACC” is the main part of  the argument. So your quote selection is to me an attempt to side track this arguement.
      So playing your game, quoting from you “we can take the rest of her diatribe with a grain of salt” means you support Pullar and the fact she gave files to a journalist.

      Nice to know your full character.

      Selective pulling of quotes can be fun can’t it.

    • Roscoe

      I consider both Fran O”Sullivan and Deborah Coddington to be professional journalists and strong, talented women – they are entitled to their view and they are welcome to publish it – it clearly doesn’t agree with sit well with you but that’s OK because you are also are entitled to your opinion. BUT you must surely have noticed the public criticism of Michelle Boag, quoting her bullying, her underhand tactics and the fact that she does seem to get herself involved in some very suspect campaigns. Whether she went along with Pullar as friend, support person, advocate or media person is irrelevant it’s all on public record now and she will have to live with the fallout. Pesonally I think that Pullar is flogging adead horse whs has alrady had a million dollar payout she should call it a day now.

    • Fran didn’t attack Collins. Your reading comprehension is apparently very poor.

    • Peter WIlson

      If you’re able to get away from the Boag vendetta thing, perhaps you’ll see things different. And with all due respect to WO, how is Pullars actions different from the Labour Party data?

  • captain Kidd

    The whole episode is a bit OTT.My name was one of the 6000 odd released.Acc showed me exactly what they had released,it was really only name and case no.I told Acc when they rang that I did not care as i personaly have nothing to hide,and there was no info released that any one could use anyway.

  • Troy

    So Pullar has already pocketed a million $ ? What does this bitch want – more?  Seems like the greedy bitch is playing the system for all she can get – she should be exposed for what she is, a parasitical leech on the system and we are paying for it.

    • Callum

      In effect she had two insurance policies, paid two premiums and is entitled to claim on both. Personally I think the whole situation is pretty shit but the claim on her other policy is a smokescreen, given she was paid out I think it actually strengthens her case with ACC.

      • BJ

        Her Business ACC payments hardly warrant being called a premium. ACC is based on need not on ‘right’