News release

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15 September 2014
PM responds to incorrect surveillance claims

Prime Minister John Key tonight corrected misinformation that has been put in the public domain concerning the operations of the Government Communications Security Bureau.

“Claims have been made tonight that are simply wrong and that is because they are based on incomplete information,” Mr Key says.

“There is not, and never has been, a cable access surveillance programme operating in New Zealand.

“There is not, and never has been, mass surveillance of New Zealanders undertaken by the GCSB.

“Regarding XKEYSCORE, we don’t discuss the specific programmes the GCSB may, or may not use, but the GCSB does not collect mass metadata on New Zealanders, therefore it is clearly not contributing such data to anything or anyone,” Mr Key says.

“I am setting the record straight tonight because I believe New Zealanders deserve better than getting half of a story, embellished for dramatic effect and political gain, and based on incomplete information.

“The GCSB undertakes cyber security operations to protect individual public and private sector entities from the increasing threat of cyber-attack and this is very important work.

“It does not, however, remotely resemble what has been claimed,” Mr Key says.

The GCSB’s cyber security operations occur within its legal framework and only when the following conditions are met:

  • Each entity must provide individual legal consent to be protected by the GCSB;
  • The independent Commissioner of Security Warrants must be satisfied each individual case is within the law, and a legal warrant must be co-signed by the Prime Minister and the Commissioner;
  • Warrants are subject to a two-step process, as outlined by the Prime Minister when legislation was passed last year. A warrant is required for high level cyber protection for an individual entity, and the content of a New Zealander’s communications cannot be looked at by a GCSB employee unless a specific cyber threat is identified which relates to that communication. If that is the case, the GCSB must return to the Prime Minister and the Commissioner to make the case for a second warrant in order to access that communication.

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15 September 2014
Prime Minister responds to alleged email

Prime Minister John Key says he stands by his statements that he did not know about Dotcom until the day before the raid took place on his property in January 2012.

An alleged email has surfaced today from 27 October 2010 between WarnerBros Kevin Tsujihara and MPAA’s Mike Ellis which has been discredited by both parties.

“The conversation allegedly reported on in the email did not take place,” Mr Key says.

“People will see this for what it is.”

News release

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05 September 2014
Government Inquiry announcement

Prime Minister John Key today announced the establishment of a Government Inquiry into allegations regarding Hon Judith Collins and a former Director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley.

“I have determined that a full and proper Government Inquiry with full powers of inquiry under the Inquiries Act 2013 is the most appropriate course of action.”

Former High Court Judge Hon Lester Chisholm will conduct the inquiry.

Mr Chisholm is a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to the Judiciary and was a member of the New Zealand Law Practitioners’ Disciplinary Tribunal.

Mr Chisholm was also recently the chair of the Board of Inquiry with the Ruataniwha dam and irrigation scheme.

The Inquiry will be established by notice in the Gazette no later than 11 September 2014.

The Terms of Reference require the findings of the inquiry to be reported to the Prime Minister no later than 28 November 2014.

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03 September 2014
Govt contributes $2m to rebuilt Stadium Southland

Prime Minister John Key today announced the Government will contribute $2 million to Stadium Southland, fulfilling an undertaking he made when he officially opened the rebuilt facility in May this year.

“When I opened the stadium earlier this year, I said the Government would be prepared to help the Southland community with a contribution to reduce the rebuilt stadium’s funding shortfall,” Mr Key says.

“I said we would try to find a way to help a community that was helping itself, and Southlanders certainly seem to have done that. I’m advised the community’s Rattle the Tin campaign has now raised $1.3 million towards the stadium’s remaining funding shortfall of around $5 million.

“So in returning to Invercargill today, I am pleased to confirm the Government will contribute $2 million to what is an important facility for the Southland community,” says Mr Key.

The $43 million 4,000-seat Stadium Southland was rebuilt and upgraded after its roof collapsed under heavy snowfall in September 2010.

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02 September 2014
PM announces further details of inquiry

Prime Minister John Key today announced further details on the inquiry into matters concerning former Minister Judith Collins.

“As I indicated yesterday, I intend to appoint a Government Inquiry under the Inquiries Act 2013 to investigate allegations that Ms Collins undermined the then Director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley, during her time as Minister of Police with responsibility for the Serious Fraud Office,” Mr Key says.

“This inquiry will be carried out by a retired judge or a QC, who will have full powers under the Inquiries Act to conduct an independent investigation into the allegations, and will report to the Prime Minister.”

Mr Key says he expects the inquiry will take some weeks to complete its work, and is likely to report back after the upcoming election. 

“The matters to be investigated in relation to Ms Collins are serious, and I believe it is important the inquiry have sufficient time to conduct a thorough review of those matters before reporting back,” he says.

“The Inquiries Act envisages the terms of reference will be discussed with the person appointed to the inquiry before they are finalised.  I expect to be able to announce further details on the appointment, the terms of reference and the reporting timeframe in the coming days.”

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