The recording was from February 2018, around the time the Government first delayed the rollout of cameras on nearly 1000 fishing boats – since then it’s been delayed again until at least October next year.
In it, Nash points the finger of blame squarely at them for delaying plans to put cameras on commercial fishing boats to make sure they don’t break the law.
Cameras on fishing boats are causing conniptions and contradictions.
“New Zealand First has not been the cause of delays on cameras,” Nash has claimed on Tuesday.
But in February 2018, a few months after he took office, the explanation was remarkably different according to this secret recording obtained by Newshub.
“I’ve got to play the political game in a way that allows me to make these changes. Now, Winston Peters and Shane Jones have made it very clear they do not want cameras on boats,” Nash can be heard saying in a recording.
So do we believe what the Minister has said publicly or what he was recorded saying in private? Not a hard one.
NZ First MPs are adamant they haven’t delayed things, with Jones blaming the pandemic.
“I’m not the Fisheries Minister, but I suspect that COVID has got a lot to do with it,” Regional Development Minister Shane Jones told Newshub.
“Cameras on fishing boats is really interesting. We haven’t blocked cameras on fishing boats,” NZ First MP Tracey Martin told Newshub Nation.
Although in an interview with Newshub less than two weeks ago, party leader Winston Peters eventually acknowledged NZ First was involved in the delay.
“Do we listen to industry representation, yes. Are we concerned about families and their economic representation? Yes. Are we the cause of that delay? Well, we are part of the representation that has ended up with a more rational and sane policy, yes” he said. Asked whether that was a yes to the original question, Peters responded: “yes”.
So two NZ First MPs deny it is anything to do with them, while Winston says it is. Such an honest bunch.
Fishing company Talley’s donated $10,000 to Shane Jones’ 2017 election campaign. RNZ also revealed that Talleys donated $26,950 to the NZ First Foundation.
Now here is what is interesting.
The Greens haven’t said a peep.
Imagine if this was happening as part of a National-led Government. Greens would be decrying it as corruption. They’d be laying complaints with the Police, the SFO, the Auditor-General, the Ombudsman etc. They’d demand a Commission of Inquiry into it and would denounce it daily in Parliament.
Instead they stay silent rather than risk the baubles of office.