Verbal fisticuffs were thrown in the corridors of power today as the political backlash over the government’s purchase of new fleet of new BMW limousines refused to die down. This is becoming known as the Cash for Cars scandal.
The purchase of the cars, some with extras such as heated seats, went ahead despite National’s claims that New Zealand is operating under austerity measures. Meanwhile the IMF and ratings agencies placed the country on “At Watch” status.
An angry exchange has broken out between Labour and National amid claims of a smear campaign after Trevor Mallard labelled John Key unethical and came close to calling his government corrupt.
The exchange was sparked by accusations from Labour that National accepted a $50,000 donation from the owner of a new and used BMW dealership in Auckland following the decision to upgrade the ministerial BMW fleet…
Mr Mallard went further in Parliament accusing Mr Key personally of transferring “the morals and ethics of Merrill Lynch – a company that was at the… end of a lot of deals and went down when the financial crisis came” to New Zealand.
“That is the level of ethics he has transferred to being the prime minister of New Zealand.”…read more here
The Herald added
Trevor Mallard also said Prime Minister John Key attended a fundraising event at BMW before the contract was agreed.
This could be one to keep an eye on as the story develops.
For background read blog NZ poverty a ‘lifestyle choice’ : Let them drink coke
Other bloggers on this issue
Cash for Cars? (TheStandard.org)
Where is Hipkins dissenting report? (Whaleoil)