The Herald reports:
Gareth Morgan has quit The Opportunities Party (TOP) after a dispute over how to spend a $50,000 donation that the party has given back to him.
But Morgan says the main reason he is leaving is not the dispute, but simply because it is time to pour energy into other projects.
Morgan has donated about $2 million to TOP to contest the 2017 election, and said he had put in about twice that amount overall, including what it took to set up the party from scratch.
A total of $2.29 million donated.
Asked if the party had been a dictatorship, Simmons said: “Gareth was the sole funder, the leader, and chair of the board. I’ll let you draw your own conclusions.”
Code for yes.
One former TOP candidate thought the old military quote “We’re here to preserve democracy not practice it” applied wonderfully to Gareth.
“In my view, the leadership cannot be kumbaya, ‘let’s hold hands’ – that’s Green Party-type stuff. For me, it’s got to be hard-ass, straight between the eyes, ‘this is the best policy and tell me why it’s not, otherwise adopt it’.
“Geoff is far more conciliatory. He’s a really nice guy. He and the others, well, they’re not going to be like me. They’ll adopt a different approach, and whether that works I have no idea, but it’s up to them.”
A leader does need to be able to get media attention. But that doesn’t mean all publicity is good publicity.