John Banks is the MP for Epsom in Auckland and also the Minister for Small Business. He is the only ACT MP in Parliament.
He is in trouble at the moment because he received two large donations to help him win the job of mayor of Auckland in 2010. Len Brown won that election. The law says that he must make a list of large donations with the name of the donor. This is to stop corruption. However, John Banks received $15,000 from Sky City and $50,000 from Kim Dotcom which he listed as ‘anonymous’. He had also asked Mr Dotcom to divide the money into two cheques. Then last week, he said he didn’t know who gave him that money but Mr Dotcom said that Mr Banks rang him to thank him for the money.
Now Mr Banks has changed his story. He said his lawyer told him to say nothing. Now he says he always likes to be honest.
The Opposition in Parliament says that the Prime Minister must get rid of John Banks. If a court finds him guilty of breaking the law, he cannot be an MP.
To hear more about Kim Dotcom, listen to January 21st 2012
ACT Party – a right wing party
donation – gift of money
donor – the person who gives the money
anonymous – no name
corruption – dishonesty e.g. bribery
Opposition – the Labour Party and the Green Party
1. Sky City gave $15,000 to Len Brown also but he listed the name of the donor. Now Len Brown supports Sky City’s plan to build a Convention Centre. Is this corruption?
2. John Banks was a friend of Kim Dotcom and tried to help him buy a house in New Zealand. Was this money bribery?