No need to apologise to National after Budget blunder hack claims - Kris Faafoi

Kris Faafoi doesn't believe the Government should apologise after Grant Robinson was accused of smearing the Opposition.

On Tuesday after National released secret Budget figures and Treasury claimed its website had been hacked, the Finance Minister released a statement calling on the National party to stop the leaks.

He said they shouldn't release more Budget material "given that the Treasury said they have sufficient evidence that indicates the material is a result of a systematic hack and is now subject to a Police investigation".

National leader Simon Bridges blasted the comment, calling for the Minister's resignation as he said the statement implied National had received the information as a result of a hack - later proven not to be true.

While Bridges has gained the support of several political commentators in calling for Robertson's head, Labour Minister Faafoi doesn't believe an apology is warranted.

"No, not really," he told The AM Show.

No need to apologise to National after Budget blunder hack claims - Kris Faafoi
Photo credit: The AM Show / Newshub.

Robertson and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern have both also said the Finance Minister's statement was based on advice provided by the Treasury.

"What I think we need to make sure is absolutely clear here is that no one has made a direct accusation to the National Party," Ardern said on Wednesday.

She did not agree with the "assertion" made by Bridges that Robertson's statement had alleged that the National Party's material was the result of a hack.

Faafoi also says Bridges' behaviour with the Budget leak was revealing.

"I think Christmas time will be an interesting time for Simon because he knows what day Christmas day is but he is probably having a wee peek at the presents, he knows he is not supposed to but because it is so easy, I think he probably looks at his presents.

"I think most New Zealanders know what they think of that."

The pre-Budget Day play by National has been criticised by some political commentators.

Political commentator Chris Trotter previously told The AM Show that National could have come out of the scandal cleaner if they had simply revealed there had been a hole in the Government's defences, but not actually released the numbers.

"What I probably would have tried to do is first of all tell the Government 'you've got a leak, I am getting information, this is a very serious breach of security' and somehow allow people like yourself Duncan to know that there had been a leak.'

"Then all the pressure would have come on the Government... but no fingerprints for the National Party."

But Bridges has dismissed those arguments, saying it was the Opposition's role to show the Government's incompetence.

"The only wrongful behaviour we have seen is from the Treasury, Grant Robertson and other Ministers such as Winston Peters."

Judith Collins.
Judith Collins. Photo credit: The AM Show.

National MP Judith Collins also said on Friday that it had been a good week.

"[Simon Bridges] has had a good week. We've had a great week on our side, we have done quite a lot of laughing… we have been all enjoying ourselves."

Newshub.

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