Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters claims that the allegations to the NZF Foundation have come as a result of stolen information.
“The reality is that someone has stolen information here, we are pretty certain who that person is,” Peters says.
Winston Peters goes live. Source - Winston Peters Facebook Page.
Mr Peters went live on Facebook last night to answer questions that had been submitted from the public. He started by explaining the origins of the NZF Foundation and his involvement. Peters says that the idea of forming a foundation, came after people had observed that the National Party had one and that NZF should have one as well.
“My only involvement then and all the way through was to say at the start, ‘you make sure it’s legal.’”
Peters then explained that a law firm was hired to help establish the foundation. To maintain legalities, the Deputy PM explains, that it was his party that engaged with police once issues were identified.
“We had decided, from my consultation with the party itself, that we should request the polices’ involvement.”
When Mr Peters was asked about the secrecy surrounding large political donations, he linked the right to anonymous donations to the right to vote in secret.
“They’re also entitled under the law, they’re entitled to have contributions they make to political parties kept secret.”
Mr Peters explained that people are entitled to support democracy by giving political donations. The alternative, was taxpayer funded political parties, something which NZF is ‘diametrically opposed’ to.
In response to questions regarding the origins of the funds donated to the foundation, Mr Peters says:
“To the best of my knowledge, it has only been from NZ legal entities and residents.
In addition, the Deputy PM has denied receiving any funds from the NZF Foundation.
“I did not receive any money, full stop. I’m not part of the Foundation. Full stop.”