MFAT inquiry report shows true cost of public sector cuts

The Ombudsman’s report into Paula Rebstock’s inquiry shows that the Government spent taxpayer money on a politically motivated attacks to distract attention from drastic public sector cuts, the Green Party said today.

The Ombudsman’s report into Paula Rebstock’s inquiry shows that the Government spent taxpayer money on a politically motivated attacks to distract attention from drastic public sector cuts, the Green Party said today.

 

Ombudsman Ron Paterson today found that the expensive inquiry by the State Services Commission and Paula Rebstock into Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) leaks was poorly carried out and disparaged senior diplomats who were not responsible for the leaks.

  

“This is further evidence that Paula Rebstock is being paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to pursue the Government’s agenda at the expense of justice, fairness and good process,” said Green Party global affairs spokesperson Kennedy Graham.

 

“Taxpayers should not have to fork out half a million dollars for an ill-conceived smear campaign and then pay for compensation to individuals who were unfairly targeted.

 

“This fiasco began with Murray McCully’s poorly managed change programme at MFAT and has spiralled out of control since then.

 

“Reforms at MFAT were justified on the basis of cost-cutting, but the climate of suspicion that the investigation created and the ballooning costs have undermined this rationale.

 

“Ian Rennie claims that his inquiry was necessary to ensure that public servants will behave with the highest levels of integrity, but his conduct and the conduct of Paula Rebstock falls far short of those standards.

 

“Today’s findings by the Ombudsman confirm that public servants and taxpayers deserve better from this Government and its ministers,” said Dr Graham.

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