June 04, 2014
Health Ministry questioned over trust failure
New Zealand First leader Winston Peters says steps taken to counter alleged fraud at kaupapa Maori disability services provider Te Roopu Taurima o Manukau don’t go far enough.
The Health Ministry has appointed consumer advocate David Russell to advise the board, with chair John Marsden standing down.
It has also sent in consultants to work with management, and a forensic audit is being carried out of the organisation’s books.
Mr Peters says it’s clear the books have been fiddled while the ministry stood back.
"The Ministry of Health did an appalling job. They’re meant to be overseeing this expenditure. They just looked at the pay out for wagers and salaries, but never looked at expenses which is where you will find all the rorts in this business. And now they’re going to have an in-house inquiry, rather than a full scale inquiry as to how they themselves, the Ministry of Health, didn’t perform," he says.
Te Roopu Taurima o Manukau has 500 staff providing services to about 300 mainly Maori clients residents of its 54 homes in Auckland, Northland, Waikato and Canterbury.
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