Anticorruptionnz's Blog

06/12/2009

Indy media is back up

Filed under: corruption,Lord of the rings,transparency — anticorruptionnz @ 9:42 am

my post at http://www.indymedia.org.nz/article/77852/animal-welfare-institute-new-zealand is back up it sets out the story behind AWINZ  and its  beginings. The original post is below…

Ever wondered  why New Zealand is the least corrupt in the OECD , well this is why.

In 2006 I questioned the accountability that the Animal welfare Institute of New Zealand (AWINZ) had  to the public

AWINZ is an approved  Organisation  under the Animal welfare act and has law enforcement  powers. Neil Wells who wrote the bill for the act  with  his own ambitions  for a Territorial animal welfare authority in mind , made the application on behalf of AWINZ to the minister in 1999 and in so doing made several false claims  including the false allegation that a trust deed existed  and that  it was being incorporated.

Wells a former head of the the SPCA, intended to  make his money  by providing   local governments  with  the resources to extend  dog control and stock control ( both statutory responsibilities of council ) to include the duties  traditionally carried out by the SPCA.

Local government New Zealand objected   to  territorial authorities being involved in a central government role,  but despite this Wells tried to keep his ambition  alive by creating the concept  of a trust and made an application to the minister .

The reality is that  his claims were no more and no less what John Davies was found guilty of  and Mary Anne Thompson is facing  fraud charges for.

But such as it was it was not Wells  who was had up  for  making false claims, it was me the  whistle blower  who was executed.  Defamation   charges were filed to sielnce me  and so  with my  statutory defence of truth and honest opinion  denied Judge Roderick Joyce ordered me to pay costs in the vicinity of $140,000  for speaking the truth . The learned  Judge  came to the conclusion that mr ” wells had  got ahead of himself .His honour was forced to go on line to find  evidence to substantiate his stand against me. ( ironically Joyce has reprimanded jurors for exactly this )

I appealed the decision  in February 2009  but  the wheels of justice   have failed to deliver a decision  as yet but never mind with lawyers bills of  round the $100,000  mark   the  cost judgemnt still  hovering inthe background and a now broken marriage  I have to  be  grateful that I live in a democracy  a civilised society  where openness and transparency  exists in  governance and justice.

This week  an official information act release  arrived  as  here with   it states “  The trustees of AWINZ have subsequently made a voluntary decision, which has been advised to the Minister of Agriculture, to relinquish AWINZ’s status as an approved organisation under the Act. ”

But  apart from this  document ,which  is now 3 months old, there is no indication  that anything has changed  and  my sources reveal that  AWINZ  still operates as it has done for the past  9 years  being that   this trading name  contracts to Central and local Government. Wells  is now the manager of animal welfare Waitakere  and  effectively  ” contracts” to himself.

The concept is ingenious- an SPCA  which operated  from council premises, uses  council staff , vehicles and resources , prioritises animal welfare work over  council work   and all that was left for Wells to do ( apart from collecting his council wages )  is to collect  the public donations ,solicited in  council paid envelopes  sent out with  dog regsitration , and banking them into a bank account which bearing  the name ” animal welfare institute of New Zealand ” over which only Neil Wells  had control over.

This is a classic example  as to the lack of transparency  in New Zealand and  serves as a warning to any one  who questions what they believe to be a conflict of interest in a public private relationship .  How many more AWINZ’s  are there out there , why is it so difficult to question corruption – Oh that’s  where  we came in  New Zealand is the least corrupt in the OECD  I know  because the statistics   show it.  Don’t look under the rug  that’s where we smother the  whistle blowers.

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