Tracy Watkins at Stuff reports:
The person known only as “A” in relation to a legal challenge to the Paula Rebstock-led inquiry into the unauthorised release of sensitive Cabinet documents came into contact with the documents in a clerical role, the Appeal Court has heard.
This is a significant revelation. Most people had been assuming that Person A was a diplomat – an MFAT professional. And while no civil servant should be condoned for leaking “sensitive Cabinet documents”, there was a reasonable amount of sympathy for Person A on the assumption that they were an MFAT diplomat directly affected by the proposed restructuring.
But that assumption is wrong. So does this mean other common assumptions re Person A and the leak could be wrong.
- Could the assumption Person A works at MFAT be wrong? Might it be someone from elsewhere in the public sector?
- Could the motivation then be not personal or professional, but purely political and partisan?
- How does someone who is in a (presumably not highly paid) clerical assistant afford the cost of legal action to stop the report in both the High Court and the Court of Appeal?
- Could someone else be paying the bills, or assisting with them?