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Corporate treating of Treasury requires audit

NZPA

Thursday 21st July 2011 3 Comments

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The New Zealand Debt Management Office must be independently audited to ensure they have secured the best borrowing deals for New Zealand in light of revelations that they have been regularly treated to lunch, dinner, sports and theatre tickets, and leisurely games of golf, the Green Party said today.

Treasury's Gift and Hospitality Register was released today after the existence of the existence of the Register was revealed after earlier questioning from Dr Norman in the Finance and Expenditure Select Committee. The Register shows Treasury staff received a total of 234 treats in the last year valued at $50 or more, a majority from the major banks.

"The disturbing frequency and value of gifts regularly given to senior staff within the Debt Management Office - 164 gifts in total - is something that should be closely looked at," said Green Party Co-leader Russel Norman.

"In one year alone, Westpac, ANZ, BNZ, Barclays, and Deutsche Bank made 118 gifts to Debt Management Office staff. These included lunches, dinners, and theatre and sports tickets.

"Such a culture of treating is outside of state sector rules and raises questions of a potential conflict of interest.



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Comments from our readers

On 21 July 2011 at 2:40 pm Bernie Fuller said:
Rather than have an independent audit, it should be the policy that free "gifts" cannot be accepted. This type of policy exists in a number of large companies both in NZ and overseas.
On 21 July 2011 at 4:12 pm H. said:
Accepting gift should be banned. It taints the whole process with corruption. The only purpose of gift in this context is to try to influence decisions. There are several first world countries where civil servants loose their job if they are found to have received gifts. This should also be the case in NZ.
On 22 July 2011 at 9:00 am Mark said:
There should be no debate. Gifts should be banned and it should be a sackable offence to accept any. Period.
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