28 Apr 2012

Shearer calls for PM to stand down Banks

9:32 pm on 28 April 2012

Labour Party leader David Shearer is calling on the Prime Minister to stand John Banks down as a minister, following fresh allegations about donations to Mr Banks' 2010 Auckland mayoral campaign.

It's been reported that Mr Banks advised Kim Dotcom to split a $50,000 donation in two, so that it could be declared as an anonymous contibution.


David Shearer says John Key should confront Mr Banks, and get to the bottom of what has gone on.

He says the Act Party leader cannot continue to hold ministerial roles while such serious allegations are swirling aound him.

"This is not just a trivial matter. This is about the way we declare our election expenses. It's about transparency in our electoral system. It's very, very important that we make sure all MPs are seen to be transparent and accountable."

Mr Shearer says there are now serious questions about whether Mr Banks' vote on possible legislation allowing Sky City to install more gambling machines would be influenced by undeclared casino donations.

Labour MP Trevor Mallard, who made a complaint to the council over the non-declaration of a $15,000 donation from Sky City to Mr Banks' mayoral campaign, and which is now in the hands of the police, says he will lodge a fresh complaint over the Dotcom donation.

Mr Mallard says if Mr Banks asked Kim Dotcom to split his donation, then Mr Banks' future in politics is very limited.

But John Key's office says Mr Banks has assured the Prime Minister he complied with local body electoral law at all times.

A spokesperson for Mr Key says if people have concerns about Mr Banks' mayoral campaign, those concerns should be taken to the relevant authorities.

Mr Banks has not returned Radio New Zealand's calls.