More than three weeks ago the Green Party Co-leader, Metiria Turei, admitted she defrauded the taxpayer by claiming the Domestic Purposes Benefit she either wasn't entitled to, or failed to declaire income via flatmates she had while a law student in the 1990s.
The DHB is for parents of children with no partner and no significant income for the upbringing of the child or children. As we learn more, it becomes clear that Ms Turei's claims that she 'needed to defraud the tax paper to feed her baby' are a gross exaggeration.
Enough is enough - stop dragging the chain and pay the money back!
Every dollar Metiria Turei stole is one less for the very people in poverty Metiria Turei claims she's helping. As a senior MP, Ms Turei earns more than $200,000 per year. We say pay the money back, and pay it back today.
Ms Turia has been dragging the chain, meeting with officials and saying she'll pay the money back if she is asked to by WINZ. That's not good enough.
Converted into today's dollars, three years of the DPB is at least $57,096 she owes taxpayers - and that doesn't even include a cent of penalty interest.
Scroll down to add your name to the petition calling on the amount to be paid back now.
What we know so far about Turei's case:
Lied over a period of at least three years covering at least three different houses about how much rent she was paying
- Was either living with the father of the baby for at least two years (which was welfare fraud as ineligible for DPB) or lied to the Registrar of Electors about where she lived in order to illegally vote in an electorate (electoral fraud which had a maximum penalty of three months jail under the 1956 Electoral Act)
Refused to name the father of the baby, making it impossible for MSD to detect whether or not she was living with him at the time
The father not only lived with Metiria (according to the electoral roll) but owned the Mt Edan property. So are we to believe that despite being wealthy enough to own a house, he was contributing nothing to the upkeep of his child? He certainly wasn’t paying child support to the IRD as Turei refused to name him.
- The father’s mother was at the time the Mayor of North Shore City. Are we to believe that the Hartley’s were not contributing to their grandchild’s expenses at all? If so, this should be disclosed to MSD. The DPB is an income tested benefit.
Metiria was living with her mother for at least two years but claims they were financially independent. So again we are meant to believe Metiria was receiving no support from either set of grandparents, despite living with them.
- Metiria never sought employment during this period, but did find time to twice stand for Parliament despite claiming to be so poor that she had to lie to MSD in order to get more money from taxpayers.
Was believed to be living with her new partner for some of the time she was on the DPB, which also could invalidate her eligibility or mean his income should be included.
"I call on Metiria Turei to stop dragging the chain and immediately refund to the taxpayer the full amounts she stole in the 1990s."
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