Tuesday 23 October 2018

Radio New Zealand helps the National Party bury the story of Bridges' corruption

To say that I am disgusted would be a gross understatement.  

It underlines why I have lost interested in NZ politics. It is totally irrelevant.


I expect this behavour from the corrupt National Party.It is the response of media and naive people who swallow everything hook, line and sinker and can't even remember a week back.

These are my initial thoughts on Facebook:

Well done Radio NZ for doing your part in burying the real part of the story of Jami-Lee Ross and “moving on”when the real issues of corruption go unmentioned and JLR who may or may not be suffering from a nervous breakdown.

What a narrow-minded, horrid little country that can ape the worst aspects of the Democrat Party and Theresa May’s fascist Britain.

Reading between the lines it looks as if the government is COLLUDING with the National Party.

In this even the awful Cameron Slater (Mr. Dirty Politics himself) is right compared with this shit.

Excuse me while I vomit.

National defends handling of woman's complaint against Jami-Lee Ross

The National Party president is defending his handling of a complaint laid against former National MP Jami-Lee Ross.

This comes as Opposition leader Simon Bridges promises to look into workplace and internal party practices to ensure women feel safe.

After unleashing a volley of allegations against Mr Bridges and National last week, Mr Ross was reportedly taken into mental health care over the weekend.

He denies claims against him of harassing and bullying four women, but has apologised to Katrina Bungard, a candidate for National in Manurewa last year.

Mr Ross admits he did not treat Ms Bungard well during a local body campaign his wife was involved in.

In 2016, National Party president Peter Goodfellow and a woman who complained about Mr Ross' behaviour struck an agreement to resolve the situation.

On his way into National's weekly caucus meeting today, Mr Goodfellow denied using a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) and defended his handling of the complaint.

"We haven't used any NDAs. That matter was a private matter and they wanted confidentiality, so they both agreed that it would be kept confidential," Mr Goodfellow said.

"That's the only instance that I'm aware of in my time as president that we've had an issue like that and it's certainly the only time that the parties have requested confidentiality."

When asked why Mr Ross was allowed to run for election in Botany last year given the earlier complaint about his behaviour, Mr Goodfellow said the matter was simple.

"It was a matter that was raised by a couple of people and was dealt with - and actually to the satisfaction of the parties," he said.

"We acted quickly and helped them to resolve the differences and move on."

Mr Goodfellow said he did not later tell Mr Bridges, despite the National Party leader's plans to promote Mr Ross within the caucus.

"That was an issue that had been dealt with at the time - so no."

Mr Bridges defended his handling of the leak inquiry, and the subsequent naming of Mr Ross, saying he has made the right calls for the right reasons in "difficult circumstances".

"My priority now of course is those who have been hurt - including Jami-Lee Ross," he said.

Mr Bridges was asked what he knew about Mr Ross' current situation and what happened over the weekend.

"I didn't know about that until after the event," he said.

"I've been given some second hand accounts but look I wouldn't comment on them."

Nor would Mr Bridges comment when asked if he was concerned someone else in the National Party had been involved in Mr Ross reportedly being committed to a mental health facility.

"No I'm not, I think this is a matter... for the relevant authorities, whether that be police ... they can answer as they see appropriate."

Mr Goodfellow said he only found out about Mr Ross' mental health issues very recently, while Rodney MP Mark Mitchell said he checked in with Mr Ross about three weeks ago.

"It was purely a welfare check to make sure that he was actually going to be okay," Mr Mitchell said.

"Actually my focus too has been making sure that Lucy his wife and their kids are supported as well."

Mr Bridges has ordered an inquiry to make sure women are feeling safe in the workplace.

"A number of people, a number of women have been affected here.

"And so I'm going to make sure that I talk to parliamentary services this week, to make sure women feel absolutely safe in the workplace and they feel they can confidently come forward on all matters.

"I also want to make sure that we are doing the same in the party in terms of volunteers, candidates, staff - that we are getting independent advice to make sure we've got the best systems and processes."

It was unlikely the findings of the internal review would be made public, Mr Bridges said.

Female MP sent abusive text to Jami-Lee Ross

A text believed to have been sent to Jami-Lee Ross in August by a female MP that Mr Ross had a relationship with has been released today.

The text - released on the same day that the National Party said it would review its culture - includes a slew of abuse and personal insults about Mr Ross' appearance and personality.
Last week several women accused Mr Ross of bullying and harrassment.
Mr Ross has admitted to an affair with a fellow MP and apologised to a woman he admits he behaved inappropriately towards during a local body campaign his wife was running in.
Jami-Lee Ross outside the Victoria Street police station in Wellington.

The text sent in August was 61 words long. The message - along with other texts - was provided to RNZ by a supporter of the Botany MP with his permission.

Checkpoint has chosen not to release the exact words of the entire text out of concern for the wellbeing of both MPs. It is not clear what prompted the message.

However it was sent to Mr Ross at 1:19am on a Saturday morning and concluded by saying: "You deserve to die".

National Party leader Simon Bridges announced today he was seeking independent advice on workplace and party practices to ensure women felt safe.

But Mr Bridges said he did not believe National had a culture problem.

Mr Ross, who was taken into a mental health facility at the weekend, and conceded on Friday he had not been a good husband, apologising for the hurt he had caused.

Mr Bridges and his deputy Paula Bennett both declined to be interviewed today

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