The pundits have their say

As amazingly it looks like Helen may not sack Peters at all now, three journalists have their say. First Audrey Young compares the testimonies:

There is one piece of evidence that could possibly salvage Peters and Henry and that is a record of a phone call, if one existed, from Henry to Glenn in the last three months of 2005.

It would not be hard for Henry to authorise his phone company to release that to the committee in order to save his “blood brother” and himself.

Any half decent lawyer would have produced this weeks ago. Actual evidence, as oppossed to conspiracy theories, are what is needed. If such evidence is produced, I suggest the Privileges Committee should ask the phone company in question to authenticate the evidence.

Doubtless there are some holes in the testimony of both Glenn and Peters but on the whole, you could drive a Tonka toy through Glenn’s and a Mack through Peters’.

Nicely put.

Peters suggested that just because some people at a lunch at the Karaka sales did not hear Peters thank Glenn for his donation, then he couldn’t have thanked him.

Or that because Peters has good manners (well, especially where wealthy folk are concerned) if he had known about the donation he would have thanked Glenn for it.

Yep, that was his serious argument. That he would have thanked Owen earlier than Karaka if he knew of the donation. This is why I compared it to a five year old.

Once Clark reads the transcript of the hearing, she will see that Peters does not really have a defence.

Or just read the NZPA story on how he gave three different explanations during the one session.

Colin Espiner blogs:

The difference between his testimony before the committee and that of Owen Glenn was stark. Glenn relied on facts – emails, phone logs, sworn statements from witnesses. He went through his evidence carefully and methodically. He answered questions directly, without embellishment. There was no exaggeration. He stuck to his story. He was a very credible witness.

Peters, on the other hand, led the committee a merry dance. He disputed virtually every point of Glenn’s evidence, but with nothing besides his own self-described faulty memory to back up his evidence. There were no phone logs, no emails, and only a statement from his own lawyer in his defence – and even that appeared to contradict Peters’ evidence to the committee.

On television later that night, Peters looked half-way believable in the short clips that were shown. But to sit there and watch him desperately try to explain why his lawyer Brian Henry had emailed Glenn with his bank account details just minutes after Peters had finished speaking to the billionaire was to witness a drowning man gasping for air.

He floundered, he splashed, he spluttered. But in the end Peters simply couldn’t find any credible explanation for Glenn’s hard evidence. The best he could come up with was that he might have told Henry to email Glenn, at Glenn’s request, but he had no idea why or what for and didn’t think it proper to ask.

Frankly, if the committee members believe that then they also believe in the tooth fairy.

Yet Helen still clings on to Winston.

And Bill Ralston:

He admits having a phone conversation with Glenn but cannot recall if money was discussed. In fact he thinks they didn’t discuss money. What then did they talk about? He cannot recall.

Within minutes of that phone call Brian Henry, on the advice of his “client”, emailed Glenn with bank account details for the money to be paid. Peters has no idea whom the “client” might be that Henry refers to and no idea why Henry might be sending bank account details to Glenn.

This is just nuts. Compared with the clear concise testimony given by Glenn to the committee, backed by physical evidence, Winston Peters’ statements lack any credibility and he produced no physical evidence to rebut Glenn.

Nuts indeed.

It makes Richard Nixon look like the model of integrity and truth.

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