Duncan Garner: Winston Peters' attack on Newshub journalist ahead of fishing boat camera report was shameful and childish

OPINION: Oh dear, what is it about fishing and Winston Peters? What is it Winston?

Entirely fair questions from the mild-mannered, hard-working Michael Morrah. The claim: Winston and his party delayed cameras being compulsory on all fishing vessels.

Have a listen to these exchanges: "Do we listen to industry representation? Are we concerned about families and their economic sustainability? Yes... Am I corrupt like your organisation? No," Peters said to Morrah in an interview less than two weeks ago.

"You're asking an insulting question. Stop making your vile, defamatory allegations by way of an accusatory question... This conversation is over."

Winston, Winston, Winston.

Putting aside one of your rookie mistakes: accusing this company of being corrupt and not providing evidence of such alleged corruption, and not having the legal protection of Parliament. I can only guess Morrah hit a raw nerve using a fully-charged cattle prod.

Winston's childish, toy-throwing from the cot is shameful. If we're corrupt - he's a sook.

Man up to Morrah - don't walk away at the first sign of pressure. If you have a good story to tell, tell it.

Problem is, Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash had told the truth two years earlier - his only problem was that he was secretly recorded, saying Winston and Shane Jones didn't want cameras on boats. It was unequivocal.

Now it seems Nash has been kicked up the backside and his boss has pulled rank, sending a whimpering Nash back to say he was confused at the time as a new minister. Grow some nuts Nashy. 

You don't have to take one for the team, you don't have to lose face to save Winston's mug. What you say no to, will define you. You sounded good on that phone call. Strong.

What Morrah has done is shed light on the division within this Government over cameras on boats.

Why should we worry about Winston's involvement? Here's why.

Fishing company Talley's donated $10,000 to Shane Jones' 2017 election campaign. RNZ also revealed that Talleys donated $26,950 to the NZ First Foundation.

That sounds like a massive conflict of interest to me.

Given even that "perception", Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern should have stood him aside when Cabinet ever discussed cameras on boats. Having a man of such influence around the table gives the impression the fishing industry has their man at the top table.

Now, Peters is not the Fisheries Minister and should butt out of Nash's job. The Prime Minister should demand it. 

Duncan Garner is the host of The AM Show.

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