Govt must come clean on secret HNZ dividend

The Prime Minister must explain why Housing New Zealand is set to pay the Government $454 million in dividends in the next financial year – four times more than expected, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says.

“Housing NZ’s Statement of Performance Expectations features a single reference to a new item called “capital contributions to the Crown(page 15).

“The $336 million the Government will receive in 2016 is in addition to the $118 million annual dividend it takes out of the Crown agency.

“This appears to be tricky accounting to hide the fact National is asset stripping Housing NZ.

“It is obscene for the Government to be pumping nearly half a billion dollars out of Housing NZ when there is a desperate shortage of housing, and kids are dying in cold, damp, mouldy state houses.

“Ministers Bill English, Paula Bennett and Nick Smith have been caught in a web of lies over their deeply unpopular and flawed policy.

“John Key needs must tell the public where this $336 million comes from.

“Instead of selling off state houses to third party providers who don’t seem to want them, the Government should be repairing the ones they own and building more to house thousands of vulnerable families who need homes,” Andrew Little says.