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Mike's Minute: Sharma's allegations are now a full-blown political crisis

Author
Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Fri, 19 Aug 2022, 10:15am

Mike's Minute: Sharma's allegations are now a full-blown political crisis

Author
Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Fri, 19 Aug 2022, 10:15am

I don’t think it’s a surprise.

We said earlier in the week that the Government achieved literally nothing by suspending a bloke who was clearly out to expose his party for what it really is.

And so we have the next chapter.

Last night’s revelations, assuming they're all true, are devastating. Not just for Labour but for their leader.

Cover ups, a meeting that was secret until it wasn’t secret, a leak to let Gaurav Sharma know there was a meeting, but described as an accident.

There was no predetermination - until it appears there was a predetermination. Sharma knows this because of another leak.

He calls that meeting a kangaroo court.

Stories of back benchers in workshops being told to shut up, to say nothing, how to handle and prevnt OIA's (Official Information Act requests), how to avoid doing anything that would see the Prime Minister having to do a stand up to defend the party.

There are also contracts for workers that are split between the Labour leader and the Prime Minister's office, so excuses can be made around Official Information requests.

It's astonishing to the extent that if it’s true, it shows the true Machiavellian and dishonest nature of this Government.

Or, not remotely surprising, given some of us have been saying this for some time.

All Sharma wants to sort this out is a public inquiry.

It's not such an outlandish request given; 1) the seriousness of the allegations but, 2) the risk he runs if it finds anything other than in his favour.

For what it’s worth, they will now expel him. But then who cares? He doesn't.

And like this week, the only loser can be Labour.

They fixed nothing clearly with the suspension and when they expel him they run the risk of a by-election. Given it’s Hamilton they will lose it, and they know it.

If this story was ever beltway, in other words really only of interest to wonks who are obsessed with Wellington, then these allegations take it to a full scale, full-blown political crisis.

They go to the heart of just how fundamentally dishonest this Government is and to what lengths they are prepared to go to mislead us all.

Sharma is either a spectacularly good liar and conspiratorialist - or he's a bloke who wants to go out on the right side of honesty.

An inquiry would fix that.

Ask yourself why we aren't getting one.

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