Cancel the hui, cut off the koha
The budget blowout for Kelvin Davis’ Māori-Crown Relations engagement meetings shows the danger of taxpayer-funded ‘hui’ and koha payments.
Calling a meeting a ‘hui’ shouldn’t be an excuse for lavish catering and bureaucratic extravagance. Besides, the fact Kelvin Davis had to hold 33 meetings to figure out what his new job involves suggests the Māori-Crown Relations portfolio probably isn’t needed in the first place.
Especially concerning is that a significant proportion of the blowout comes from ‘koha’ payments. The Government should never be paying anyone ‘koha’. These payments, at best, obscure real costs and skirt tax requirements. At worst, they’re taxpayer-funded bribery of special interest groups.