When the Kitteridge report was first leaked, Green co-leader Russel Norman was outraged by the leak. He suspected it was a deliberate leak by the PMs Office or similar, and demanded the Govt take action.
On 9 April he said:
Dr Russel Norman: In light of the fact that the cover note on the report says that the appendices are legally privileged and highly classified, does he believe that the leaking of the full Kitteridge report is a serious offence?
So he is calling it a serious offence, if the full report was leaked.
Dr Russel Norman: If it does turn out that the full report has been leaked by someone in his Government, what consequences should face the person who leaked this information, which the Government Communications Security Bureau describes as legally privileged and highly classified? What consequences should that person face?
And he calls for serious consequences.
Dr Russel Norman: Given that so far the only member of his Government who, he has told us, has had access to this report is the office of the Prime Minister, did he or a member of his staff leak the report?
Which was a stupid allegation to make, as the leaking of it undermined the PM’s trip to China.
Dr Russel Norman: If he does not know who leaked the report, will he launch an inquiry to get to the bottom of it, given his previous support for an inquiry into a leak at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade over documents that were probably quite considerably less sensitive?
So he explicitly called for a leak inquiry. He said the leak may be a serious offence, and called for serious consequences.
But now today, he has changed tune and decided that the leak inquiry was draconian, and went too far.
The Prime Minister’s inquiry into the leaking of the Kitteridge report appears to have acted beyond the law by accessing Peter Dunne’s email account log without his permission, and the Green Party has lodged a complaint with the Ombudsmen on this issue, Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman said today.
Norman seems to be arguing that the Henry inquiry should have merely asked every Minister if they leaked the report, and when they said “no, it wasn’t me”, should have left it there.
If the Henry inquiry had done that, Norman would no doubt have been calling it a cover up.