INDEPENDENT NEWS

Stop The Illegal Destruction Of Defence Documents

Published: Tue 18 Sep 2001 10:56 AM
Last week Ron Mark MP, New Zealand First Spokesman for Defence, raised questions in the House, about what he believed to be $680,000 worth of Army expenditure through public relations company Communications Trumps and indicated that he would be placing an Official Information Act request for all contracts, purchase orders, invoices and financial statements between the New Zealand Army and Communications Trumps.
“There have been strong rumours and accusations that the Army has used taxpayers’ money to conduct a public relations campaign in support of its politicisation plan. There have also been suggestions that former Army personnel were employed by Communications Trumps. Now I am told that the very documents that Brigadier Gardiner refused to shred were correspondence between Army General staff and Communications Trumps.
“Knowing Brigadier Gardiner as I do, such a dishonourable and illegal order would not be tolerated or obeyed, hence his refusal to shred the documents which led to his reassignment,” said Mr Mark.
“I am also told that this Thursday at 10am, Major General Dodson will be briefing all senior officers in the Army. Some are suggesting that this will be an instruction to stand fast and stand loyal to him.
“It is time for the Minister of Defence to stop pussy footing about. The Army is facing a breakdown in discipline and a collapse in moral. I therefore call upon the Minister to urgently;
1. Order a total lockdown on all Army documentation to prevent anything further from being destroyed even if it means using the Police,
2. Immediately commission a totally independent inquiry and,
3. Suspend Major General Dodson immediately pending the outcome of these investigations.
“I also call upon all honest, loyal and trustworthy officers to do the right thing and to move to ensure that no further Defence documentation is illegally destroyed.
ENDS

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