Saturday, April 22, 2023

Cam Slater: Meng Foon Donated to Kiri Allan’s 2020 Election Campaign

His job is supposed to be politically neutral, but his donations prove otherwise

It has been revealed that another minister, this time Kiri Allan, has a donor problem. That donor is Meng Foon, who is also the Race Relations Commissioner. He has made substantial donations, both in kind by way of subsidised rent for Kiri Allan and in cash.

The Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon donated thousands of dollars to the Labour MP Kiri Allan in the run up to the 2020 General Election, 1News has revealed.

Foon, who previously spent six terms as mayor of Gisborne, was appointed by the Labour Government to the role of Race Relations Commissioner in July 2019 by the former Justice Minister Andrew Little.

The following year Allan won the East Coast seat for Labour and donations declared by the MP show Meng Foon and his wife Ying Foon gave $1500.

A company called Triple Eight Investments Limited also provided Kiri Allan a rent subsidy worth $9185 according to the declaration.

Triple Eight Investments has three directors, including Meng and Ying Foon.

Apart from Labour’s East Coast branch the Foons were the biggest financial contributors to Kiri Allan’s campaign.

Meng Foon should not be making any donations of a political nature, given he is in a government-appointed role that is supposed to be independent of the government.

Predictably, neither the Prime Minister nor the Minister sees anything wrong with this despite its being a political donation from a supposedly independent government appointee.

A key role for the Human Rights Commission is to be independent of the government and to hold it to account on its human rights record – including on race relations.

“I didn’t take any moneteary donations from Meng Foon,” Allan said when asked today. However, the election return for 2020 shows a donation of $1500 from “M and Y Foon”.

Allan said she rented office space at a property Foon’s wife owned.

“I felt pretty comfortable, it was well disclosed. It was his wife’s shop, it was an empty shop on the main drag. We paid some nominal sum, a sum, per week, and that’s all been declared.”

She felt it was an appropriate relationship and it was declared. She said she had nothing to do with Foon’s appointment. She said she’d have to check if she’d declared any conflict of interest with Foon with Cabinet.

“I assume everything that’s in my donation declarations has been declared and then anything that’s required to declare for Cabinet, we have intensive discussions about that… but I’ll go and check that.”

Kiri Allan is clearly dancing on the head of a pin here, either that or she is desperately stupid. Even if she did have nothing to do with the appointment, it still looks shabby and untidy. It looks like Meng Foon is thanking his local MP for his appointment after the fact.

The Prime Minister says nothing to see here:

Prime Minister Chris Hipkins says he has “no cause for concern” after it was revealed Government-appointed Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon donated to Kiri Allan’s election campaign in 2020.

Hipkins said he had not been aware of it, but those in public advocacy roles aligning themselves with a political party is “probably something I would be a little uncomfortable about”.

“I do think people holding those roles need to at least be seen to be politically impartial.”

But he said there were “well-established processes” in place to manage conflicts of interest.

Nothing indicated provided “cause for concern”, Hipkins said.
NZ Herald

Clearly, Meng Foon has failed the political impartiality test. At the very least, he should be sacked for that.

But this story has all the hallmarks of a set-up to get the minister and Prime Minister on record before dropping more revelations.

Hipkins has been caught out before; making statements before he is in full command of the facts.

I wonder who Foon’s referees for the job were, or who suggested he apply for it. That may well be an interesting line of enquiry.

Irrespective of that, Foon has shown his political bias with his donations, coupled with his general uselessness and his strange inability to call out the obvious racism of the Left and some government policies.

At the very least Meng Foon should be sacked.

Cam Slater is a New Zealand-based blogger, best known for his role in Dirty Politics and publishing the Whale Oil Beef Hooked blog, which operated from 2005 until it closed in 2019. This article was first published HERE


Anonymous said...

I see RED, I see RED, I see Red!!!

Robert Arthur said...

Methinks Meng has close associated too lomg, has behaved as one, and has assimilated te ao, tikanga excessively. I wonder if he has any silk underpants on his office card?

Anonymous said...

It was lov-erly to see Kiri Allen squirming on Q & A this morning. I watched about 10 seconds as that's about all I can stand of any member of this most useless, incompetent, divisive government ever to be seated in Parliament.
They are like kids who believe their own stupid lies. Hipkins is a prize idiot.
I can't wait to see the LP slide in the next poll.