3 Apr 2012

PM accused of conflict of interest over NZOA post

6:49 pm on 3 April 2012

The Labour Party has accused the Prime Minister of having a conflict of interest after John Key confirmed he chaired a Cabinet committee which appointed his electorate chairperson to the board of New Zealand On Air.

Labour's communications and IT spokesperson Clare Curran says Mr Key's disclosure raises new questions about Stephen McElrea's appointment.

Mr Key confirmed in Parliament on Tuesday that he had chaired the Cabinet committee which appointed Mr McElrea, but said the same meeting also appointed former Labour finance minister Michael Cullen to the board of New Zealand Post.

Ms Curran says the Prime Minister's admission raises serious questions about the appointment process, including did John Key declare a conflict of interest.

A spokesperson for John Key says the Prime Minister reminded members of the committee that Mr McElrea was his electorate chair.

The Prime Minister's spokesperson says Labour has a short memory, having appointed former Labour Party president Mike Williams to a number of roles, including the boards of Genesis Energy, GNS Science and the New Zealand Transport Agency.