18 March 2008
Minister of Health, Hawkes Bay DHB and the report on conflicts of interest
> LAWS179: "Minister of Health, Hawkes Bay DHB and 'serious dissatisfaction'" Much of the discussion surrounding the report released yesterday on conflicts of interest in the Hawkes Bay DHB seems to be suggesting that the report vindicates the decision of the Minister to dismiss the Board. I'm not convinced. It seems likely that the issues raised in the report could, theoretically, form a foundation for the Minister's determination of "serious dissatisfaction". However, given these issues (largely) arose before the election of the Board that was dismissed, could the Minister have had regard to these issues? There's an interpretative question about whether dissatification with the Board means the actual Board members dismissed, or whether it extends to the enduring corporate entity of the Board. As an aside, it's clear he didn't base his dismissal on the report itself - because he said he had not seen it at the time; although the generic issue of the management of conflict of interests was put in issue by the Auditor-General's report. There remains questions about whether he was entitled, as a matter of law, to the other matters he based his decision on.