12 Oct 2017

Who's deciding: NZ First board list revealed

12:54 pm on 12 October 2017

With a final day of coalition meetings under way at Parliament, close scrutiny is being given to members of the New Zealand First board who will sign off the winning deal.

Winston Peters at Parliament before starting his day of meetings.

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters Photo: RNZ / Jane Patterson

National and New Zealand First went into the first meeting at 9.30am, Labour was due to meet New Zealand First at 12.30pm, and a second round of meetings was likely later today.

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters said it was doubtful his party would make a decision today as any proposals needed to be put before the board.

He said it would be unlikely the board could meet tonight as it would be too late, so he expected it would meet tomorrow, but was unclear whether they would meet in Auckland or Wellington.

Information about who is on the board has been difficult to find - it's not listed on the party's website nor, it seems, in any publicly available party documents.

RNZ has been provided with a list of the board which was updated on 18 July this year.

As required under the party's constitution it includes the leader and deputy leader - Winston Peters and Ron Mark - along with director general Kristin Campbell Smith.

It also includes the national officers: president Brent Catchpole, vice president North Island Julian Paul, vice president South Island John Thorn and treasurer Holly Hopkinson.

Mr Catchpole is a former MP, Mr Paul stood in Epsom and is described by New Zealand First as a sales specialist and martial arts teacher, and Ms Campbell Smith runs a home stay in Bay of Plenty.

The directors of the board listed are Claire Ashley, Toa Greening, Robert Monds, Anne Marie Andrews, Kevin Gardener and Sue Sara.

Party secretary Ann Martin is not part of the board according to the constitution but as a past president could sit in on the discussions.

The board members are geographically spread around the country, so getting them in one room at short notice could take some organising.

Mr Peters said that was why there would be no decision tonight - it would be tomorrow at the earliest, and even then it could be days before an announcement was made.

He has also said there has been no discussion yet about who would make the announcement - whether it would be himself (as in 1996) or the party that won New Zealand First's support.

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