New Zealand First leader Rt Hon Winston Peters said today that TVNZ Board Member Barrie Saunders has some serious explaining to do on the question of TVNZ’s "lack of knowledge" over land it owns being targeted by the SkyCity Convention proposals.
Mr Peters says Prime Minister John Key said yesterday that TVNZ had been approached on the issue. Overnight and under questioning at a Select Committee this morning, TVNZ denied they were approached.
"That begs the question of how a member of the board, Barrie Saunders - who also happens to be co-owner of the Saunders Unsworth PR company whose clients include SkyCity - could have left the remainder of his board colleagues in the dark.
"He clearly had knowledge of what SkyCity was doing, so why did he not tell the TVNZ board?
"This screams of a serious conflict of interest which the PM is donkey-deep in, and raises the issue as to why Mr Saunders has not been removed from the TVNZ board.
"This issue is getting sleazier by the hour," says Mr Peters.