The Traitor Within: Key Met Spy Candidate For Breakfast

To Conspire comes from the Latin word Conspirare which in its essence means: to breath together.
John Key knows a lot about breathing together. Every time he meets his mates in back rooms at breakfast or tea tables ( here, here and here) they breath together and funny stuff happens such as this and this and perhaps this. So when John Key says they didn’t TALK about important stuff remember this: They did BREATH together and formed a united front and communal story and you and me are losing out because of it!

Prime Minister John Key had breakfast with Ian Fletcher just days after he selected a panel to interview candidates for the country’s top spy job.

The pair ate together at Auckland’s Stamford Plaza Hotel on June 17, 2011. Key says the vacancy, as head of the Government Communications Security Bureau, was not discussed.

Three days earlier, Key had signed off on an interview panel for the job, which included then Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet boss Maarten Wevers. Fletcher was the only person to be interviewed for the post, after a shortlist of four other candidates was rejected.

In the past month Key’s varying accounts of his relationship with Fletcher have been seized on by the Opposition.

Labour’s deputy leader, Grant Robertson, said: “Given the number of times John Key’s story has shifted, it’s hard to believe that the [GCSB] role did not come up.”

Documents released yesterday by State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie show it was agreed on July 6 that a shortlist of four candidates, drawn up by a recruitment consultant, was not suitable.

Key went on to make the controversial telephone call encouraging Fletcher, who was then working in Australia, to apply. He was interviewed on July 26.

While in New Zealand, Fletcher met acting GCSB director Simon Murdoch, Security Intelligence Service director Warren Tucker and Intelligence Co-ordination Group director Roy Ferguson. The SSC said these briefings were “usual” for candidates at this stage in the recruitment process.

On August 3, Rennie phoned Key to offer an update following the interview.

Consultancy and other fees for the appointment process were almost $60,000, the papers reveal.

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