March 13, 2023
Peeni defends consultant bill
Associate Health Minister Peeni Henare says consultants are an essential part of running a modern government, and National Party leader Chris Luxon’s promise to fund his promises by cutting them is just political posturing.
He says the creation of a Maori health authority and the replacement of district health boards by Te Whatu Ora has required bringing in expertise that cannot be found within the government – including Maori health leaders like Sir Mason Durie.
That money has already been spent, and can’t be added back to Mr Luxon’s budget.
“Putting a spotlight on consultants and matters like that is an old political ploy and it has serious holes in it and serious flaws. When you look towards some of the big projects in health and infrastructure, it comes with specialist expertise and we must pay for those,” he says.
Mr Henare says a once in a generation opportunity to change the health system is worth spending money on.