National was going to build 3000 homes in Auckland's Mt Albert before it lost the election, but didn't reveal the plans because it would have been seen as pork barrelling, Simon Bridges said on Monday.
The Government on Sunday announced the first batch of homes to be built under its KiwiBuild scheme. They'll be among between 3000 and 4000 new homes built on land formerly owned by Unitec.
"This Government will not sit around while children are living in cars and families are cramped into overcrowded housing," Housing Minister Phil Twyford said.
"There will be a mix of affordable KiwiBuild homes for first-homebuyers, public housing and open market houses."
The National Party leader told The AM Show on Monday it was "spin".
"You heard Phil Twyford yesterday, he said, 'We've had to come in and start this from scratch.' What a load of nonsense. Bollocks. It's just bollocks. This has been around for some time. All that's happened to date is a rebranding of what we were doing."
Considering the housing affordability crisis, The AM Show host Duncan Garner asked Mr Bridges why National didn't reveal the plans before the election.
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"I think in the end we didn't announce it because we went through some of this and we said actually, would it would look a bit pork-barrel politics just before the election? We'd been working on this a while."
Mr Bridges himself was accused of pork-barrel politics while Transport Minister in the last Government, after promising 10 bridge upgrades in Northland ahead of a by-election there in 2015.
The average house in Mt Albert costs a bit over $1 million. KiwiBuild homes in the super city will be priced up to $600,000.