13 Oct 2009

Associate Minister denies failing to inform colleagues of RWC TV bid

6:49 am on 13 October 2009

Associate Maori Affairs Minister Georgina te Heuheu denies she failed to inform senior colleagues of Maori Television's Rugby world cup bid.

Labour MP Shane Jones says Ms te Heuheu needs to explain why she did not keep senior colleagues informed about the decision to spend $3 million in Maori development funds to support the bid for free to air broadcast rights.

As the minister responsible for Maori broadcasting, he says she should have told Finance Minister Bill English and the Prime Minister what the Maori Affairs Minister was doing.

But Mrs te Heuheu told Waatea News she wrote to Mr English on 2 September to advise that the bid was imminent.

Ms te Heuheu said because she's not a shareholding minister, she has no governance role over Maori Television.

Maori Affairs Minister Pita Sharples has apologised to Mr English and John Key for not informing him earlier of the plan.