Source: Taxpayers Union
20 JANUARY 2021FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEThe Taxpayers’ Union is slamming the latest example of the Privacy Commissioner’s politicisation of his office, following his retweeting of political campaign ads by Invercargill City Council candidate Marcus Lush (screenshot below). Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, said:“Once again Mr Edwards puts his politics ahead of his status as a senior public servant. It is both unprofessional and brings down the status of his office. It needs to be called out.”“And this isn’t the first time. Last week Mr Edwards was tweeting about Donald Trump and American criminal justice issues, including the execution of Lisa Montgomery. Do we take that to mean it is the government’s position? Surely that’s for MFAT to communicate.”“If this was a senior public servant in pretty much any other role, they’d be sacked. Is it just that our body politic now come to expect this sort of unprofessionalism from Mr Edwards?”“If Mr Edwards was across his role, perhaps the public could have confidence him. The Police’s loss of gun data, the Wellington GP network’s loss of medical data, the rollout of nudie scanners at airports, the Government’s implementation of CCTV facial recognition software – all issues actually within his responsibility, but which saw little more than a peep.”“Compare the issues Mr Edwards shirks with anything with a hint of left-wing progressivism: he’s over the latter like a rash.”“Ironically, Mr Edwards was featured on RNZ about ‘how to write an apology letter’ (yes seriously – take a listen). While it’s not clear what that has to do with Privacy, it might be useful to consider his own tips when it comes to apologising for his own behaviour.”“Does Mr Edwards not understand that he is required to abide by the Public Service Commission’s Standards of Integrity and Conduct? If he can’t help but pontificate on Twitter about every political matter, he should resign.”“Ironically, one of the ‘values’ listed on the Privacy Commissioner’s website is ‘Independence – we operate impartially and without political or personal bias’. Oh please. No New Zealand conservative has confidence in Mr Edwards’ office given the strength of views he espouses on his public social media.”“New Zealand needs a Privacy Commissioner driven by public service and unbiased upholding of the law – certainly not a campaigner masquerading as an official in order to campaign and build their ego.”A Taxpayers’ Union intern will deliver a copy of the Public Service Commission’s Standards of Integrity and Conduct to Mr Edwards’ office later today.