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Dunne quits as Revenue Minister after GCSB leak probe shows trail of emails

Friday 7th June 2013

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Peter Dunne has quit as Minister of Revenue after an investigation into the leaking of a report on the Government Communications Security Bureau pointed to a series of emails between him and the journalist who got the material.

Dunne refused to hand over the full text of 86 email exchanges to investigator David Henry, instead offering an edited text of some of the messages.

Henry concluded three people with access to the report had been in contact with the Dominion Post reporter, Dunne and two public servants who were ruled out as culprits. Dunne couldn't be ruled out as a leaker because Henry was "unable to obtain all the information I require from him."

Prime Minister John Key made the announcement of Dunne's resignation as a minister in his government, saying he is "extremely disappointed with what has taken place."

Dunne "has been a great partner for the National Party in government," Key said. "But fundamentally, the public have high expectations of ministers and so do I."

Finance Minister Bill English was named as acting revenue minister. Dunne's ousting doesn't precipitate a numbers crisis for Key as Dunne has indicated he will still support the government on confidence and supply."

Dunne continued to deny he was the leaker, the report says.

The report was authored by Rebecca Kitteridge, seconded from Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet to conduct an urgent compliance review of the government spy agency. The report was classified as 'sensitive', restricting its access to approved public servants and ministers.

BusinessDesk.co.nz

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