Public Service Politicisation

The Herald Political Diary notes:

Treasury announces that Mike Munro – former press secretary to Helen Clark – will be its communications manager. It’s not quite the same as working for Finance Bill English but Munro’s talents in public relations and the importance of Treasury in the global recession can only help the Government. And even if anyone in Government did have misgivings, they could hardly express them after the fuss made in Opposition about political interference by ministers in the Environment Ministry posts.

Far from anyone in Government being upset, I would say everyone thinks it is a brilliant appointment. Munro is genuinely liked by all sides, and recognised for his talent.

Talking of politics and the public sector, NBR has further info on the “secret” purchase advisors that are claiming are political appointees. They are:

The advisers include two former Treasury secretaries, Murray Horn and Graham Scott, and former deputy state services commissioner Ross Tanner.

Sounds like the sort of people I would want advising me on multi billion purchase agreements. Again, I call for more of them!

Back to the diary, I was amused at this:

Lewis Holden is announced as the new chief executive of the Ministry of and Heritage. It is a familiar name to journalists who receive regular press releases from the Republican Movement. Fortunately for relations between the Government and the public service, Lewis David Holden the chief executive is not the same as Lewis Joseph Holden the agitator and they are not related. Holden the CEO is deputy secretary of the strategy branch at the Ministry of Economic Development. Coincidentally, Holden the younger got a part-time job at the MED when he was student and found out about his namesake when he found out his email address was already taken.

I think everyone in the Republican Movement should start calling Lewis, “Holden the Younger”. Reminds me of Pitt the Younger.

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