Transparency needed – Northern Advocate – 30th November 2013.


In reference to 20th November, Northern Advocate leading story ‘Affidavit alleges skeletons in closet’ and the following quotes from the article:


1/ “In the affidavit, Mr Watson alleges that Mr Simpson stated he would respond if action was taken against him. He told me there were many skeletons in the closet and ‘the door hasn’t even been opened yet'."


2/ “The affidavit also names a person Mr Watson alleges Mr Simpson had indicated was connected to unauthorised spending of council funds that was, in Mr Simpsons view, in the public interest.”


3/ “Mr Watson has confirmed to the Northern Advocate that the October 29 affidavit was not sworn under the PDA”.  (Protected Disclosures Act)


The seriousness of these alleged claims is of the utmost high importance.  As these claims are made against one of our highest paid Whangarei District civil servants and it is the ratepayers that pay his wages, it is therefore in the public’s best interest that these claims are released into a totally transparent environment.

When these claims are made public maybe others with information may wish to add to Mr Watson’s claims in the appropriate fashion.

The ratepayers have a right to know. It is councils duty of care and responsibility to keep the ratepayers (the payers of the bills) fully and totally informed. Since fielding many enquiries and concerns, I have applied to Whangarei District Council, under the Official Information Act, for a copy of the affidavit (October 29) in question.


One also must ask, if the Chief Executive Officer has such concerns, as alleged, why has he taken no action on what is claimed?



Warren Slater




Items that were abridged by the Northern Advocate are in italics, (for their published copy)