Key tells Shearer to back up claims
Fri, 12 Oct 2012 6:04p.m.
By Patrick Gower
The Kim Dotcom spy saga just keeps getting messier for the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) and our politicians.
In the wake of last night's revelations on 3 News about Labour's claim that the Prime Minister made a comment to GCSB staff about Dotcom at the spy headquarters, John Key has retaliated.
“I'm afraid its utter desperation from Mr Shearer who really should just apologise,” says Mr Key.
But Labour leader David Shearer isn’t backing down.
“I am asking the questions that New Zealanders would expect me to ask,” he says.
The question is – was there a video recording made of Mr Key making a quip about Dotcom to GCSB staff after the February 29 meeting at which he has said he cannot remember being briefed about Dotcom?
“There is no recording from GCSB – there has never been a recording from GCSB,” says Mr Key.
“They've checked when those cameras were used – they've checked with their back up tapes, they've checked the back up logs – all these things are monitored, and there's never been a recording.”
That led Mr Shearer to make another allegation, that Labour's sources inside the GCSB said someone from GCSB director Ian Fletcher's office had seized the video recording.
“They removed the hard drive from the staff who [they] believed had a copy of the video stored on that hard drive,” says Mr Shearer.
He later went even further – implying it had been destroyed.
“The GCSB is saying – after seizing hard drives – they are now saying that the video does not exist. I can leave the rest to your imagination.”
Mr Shearer admits he hasn't seen it - but is adamant his GCSB sources are right.
“My understanding is it was a handheld camera.”
Mr Key won't rule out the possibility of a private recording by a GCSB member, but told Mr Shearer to "put up or shut up".
“If Mr Shearer has a private recording which someone may have recorded on a phone or whatever it might be – he should feel free to put that in the public domain,” says Mr Key.
Yesterday, the Prime Minister could not recall making the quip.
“Look I don't know, who knows – but I don't recall it.”
Today, he implied it might have happened.
“I'm notorious for cracking jokes at events that are in the public domain,” he says.
However Mr Shearer still wants a definite answer.
“Why can't John Key just come out and say, ‘No. I didn't talk about Dotcom and GSCB because I didn't know about it at that particular time?'
“What he's saying is, ‘I don't recall, I may have said something or not.' Now, that's not believable.”
This high-stakes game of spy-versus-spy and leader-versus-leader is all about who to believe. And this is not going away for either of them. Mr Key will be coming back to Parliament next week to correct the record about when the GCSB told him about Dotcom – effectively a forced apology.
And Mr Shearer is under real pressure now. He needs that recording – any recording – to make his story stack up.
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17/10/2012 7:14:11 p.m.
kathy sums it well.Surely a security professional would have video security. this reaks of fowl play.key is financially wealthy but morally bankrupt
15/10/2012 10:36:07 a.m.
Mr Shearer. If your whistle-blowers could find evidence of surveillance of Megaupload directors this year, particularly interception of communication with lawyers, that would certainly shift things away from Planet Key and into reality. With Paul Davison after him I would imagine Keynocchio would be wanting to flit off to Hollywood permanently, if he could leave the country
14/10/2012 10:21:21 p.m.
Paul Callahan wrote:
Justice Minister visits the USA - "During a week-long stay, Ms Collins will discuss "a range of justice policy issues" with top echelon legal figures in the United States" - In other words; servant races to it's masters explaining why he dropped the plate and begging his master to get his finger out of the NZ echelon pie before anyone notices.
14/10/2012 6:45:06 p.m.
Watergate Nixon, Key Megaupload. Is this the beginning of John Key’s Kimpeachment, will he get his Dotcomuppance or will he blame John Banks and Mike Tyson?
14/10/2012 2:18:26 p.m.
Aside, yet connected in a way. Raid on Graeme Platt, Thursday: "I thought something very tragic must've happened. The policewoman was lovely, the others were maggots." Nothing changes. "Authority" is out of control!
14/10/2012 1:48:47 p.m.
ProudKiwi said: "Thank God for some honest people in our safe and generally uncorrupted country, we are fortunate to have a TV channel that has the balls to confront this rubbish. This smells of a cover up, and if you tell one lie, it turns into ten very quickly. Its not about Dotcom, its about certain highly placed and well paid individuals playing loose and easy with the laws of this country. Just think about why the High Court overturned the acting PM's certificate which was suppressing the illegal spying, in the best interest of the case. That says it all. We need a full and complete inquiry, and good on David Shearer for standing up to these people. John Key needs to be very carefull on this whole matter, or it will be a major problem if other evidence comes to light which is the "smoking gun""
14/10/2012 9:40:10 a.m.
@mike, your theories just get more ludicrous. Mr key is in charge of overseeing the GSCB. He has not done his job and infact acknowledged the illegal actions of the department. There was a tape made and he had no knowledge? What exactly has he done to oversee this dept when he either doesnt know what they do as he claims or he does and has destroyed any evidence he found? Why has the governor general not stepped into this debacle and stood him down from duties until a full and impartial inquiry into his misgivings has been done. Where does the buck stop as it seems to be higher than pm to the public?
14/10/2012 9:18:04 a.m.
Fair NZer wrote:
Information or misinformation regarding NZ GCSB is really putting not only John KEY but also Mr Shearer under real pressure. Any hearsay and/or recording needs to be supplied as evidence for any scenario(s) to stack up.
These two leaders are lacking NZers confident. Perhaps Jacinda ARDERN should be the next PM in 2014...mark my word..
13/10/2012 10:47:47 p.m.
time 2 change the government ! wrote:
its all just getting to be to much john is it not ? lol . stop telling lies like you do its as simple as that . evening Mr Gower.key blows a valve trying to recall his BS so he can cover him self . key you choose not to get it and that's your problem as we move on .i think their is a big hit coming nationals way in the polls .
13/10/2012 9:06:14 p.m.
JIm, MrKey is the miniter in charge of the GCSB.
It is like that ehas told the GCSBto lose any recordings of any kind oro find new employment.
lets not forget that they are a security/spy agency and that absolutely everything that happens in their building will be taped.
So Key saying no tape exists is a blatant lie, unless of course he has had the GCSB destroy it.
Which wouldnt suprise many of us, but they are a security agency, everything in their premises gets taped, absolutely everything.
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