Flying Sheep & Dodgy Deals: The NZ Government Paid $11 Million In Taxpayer Funded Hush Money To An Influential Saudi Businessman To Prevent A ‘Possible’ Lawsuit
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Murray McCully, has been caught paying what looks very much like a bribe to a Saudi businessman called Hamood Al-Ali Al-Khalaf whose live sheep exporting business was damaged by this country’s ban on such exports back in 2003.
This demands a serious investigation by the Auditor-General to get to the bottom of what looks very much like a bribe.
Sign and share to demand an investigation into why $11 million was ....
When the Labour-led government first banned the live exports of sheep, Al Khalaf allegedly contacted the National Party to express his opposition to the change. The National Party then made a promise to Al Khalaf that once they were in Government they would reverse the ban on live exports.
When National won the election in 2008, Al Khalaf is said to have invested tens of millions of dollars in New Zealand farmland and a ship that could transport sheep to Saudi Arabia.
But National didn’t change the law.
Using Cabinet papers obtained under the Official Information Act, NBR’s Jamie Ball raised a number of questions about whether proper processes had been followed. He has also uncovered evidence that appears to confirm that the deal making has been carried out in order to advance negotiations for a trade deal with the Gulf states. 
As part of the deal the Minister even flouted NZ law and had 1000 live sheep flown over to the Middle East.
Only the Auditor-General can get to the bottom of this deal with a full investigation to work out how the Minister can justify this highly unorthodox use of taxpayer money.
The Minister seems to be taking taxpayer money, giving it wholesale to private business in Saudi Arabia in order to smooth the way for a trade deal. If this is completely true it sets a dangerous precedent for international business.
Ironically, Parliament has just passed the second reading of the Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Legislation Bill . The legislation includes new measures “Making both fines and imprisonment available as sanctions for the offence of foreign bribery”.
Sign now and tell everyone that we need a full investigation into t...
Click here for further reading in this topic.