Quit MP’s pay cut off

Friday July 26, 2019 Written by Published in Politics
Te-Hani Brown. Te-Hani Brown.

Te-Hani Brown is no longer getting paid an MP’s salary as of this month, the Clerk of Parliament has confirmed.


Brown’s final pay check was on July 3, Tangata Vainerere said. She received three months’ pay based on the old salary rate after she resigned following her by-election win on Atiu in March this year.

The resignation came after her win was legally challenged by the losing candidate.

Vainerere said Brown’s resignation was valid as it was received and acknowledged by the Queen’s Representative Sir Tom Marsters in absence of Speaker of Parliament Niki Rattle.

However he said the court did not declare the seat vacant due to the petition.

Under the Civil List 2005, Vainerere said Brown was entitled for three month’s salary following her resignation.

The legislation states that the salary and allowance of an office holder (MP) shall be payable three months after the day that the office holder resigns his or her office.

“We authorised the continuation of Te-Hani’s pay according to this legislation so this is not something sinister we are trying to do to reward one individual, we are just following what is prescribed in the Civil List 2005,” Vainerere said.

“She was not entitled to the 45 per cent pay rise as she resigned before the pay rise was implemented.

“We follow for all privileges and entitlements for MPs guided by that legislation until the government decides to change it.”

The Civil List 2015 also state MPs will be paid three months’ pay after their appointment is revoked unless he/she is convicted of a criminal offence, immediately before the dissolution of Parliament and if they are unsuccessful candidate at the next following general election.

The 23-year-old Brown initially won the Tengatangi-Areora-Ngatiarua seat under the Democratic Party banner in the 2018 general election beating veteran politician Nandi Glassie, who then stood for the governing Cook Islands Party.

Earlier this year, Brown defected to the government to join her mother and Health minister Rose Toki-Brown, and resigned her electorate.

This led to the March by-election in which she claimed victory again against Glassie – who this time stood for the Democratic Party.

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