‘Take your own medicine’

Monday August 19, 2013 Published in Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor,

The people of this country deserve better!

They must be sick, like I am, of the constant whinging and complaining by the Leader of the Opposition every time a response is made to his unfounded and exaggerated attacks against me, my government, my candidate for the Murienua by-election Kaota Tuariki, and lately, against my media professional Trevor Pitt.

Dear Editor,

The people of this country deserve better!

They must be sick, like I am, of the constant whinging and complaining by the Leader of the Opposition every time a response is made to his unfounded and exaggerated attacks against me, my government, my candidate for the Murienua by-election Kaota Tuariki, and lately, against my media professional Trevor Pitt.

Wilkie must have a twisted mentality to think that only he can criticise, and that the rest of us ought to take it on the chin and not respond. The moment we do, he cries foul and moans long and hard, apparently believing the louder and longer he does, the more believable he becomes. If only.

He calls my candidate Kaota Tuariki a turncoat? Very rich indeed for someone guilty of the same accusation he has made. In a moment of madness he forgot the important Biblical teaching in Mathew 7:3-5 “Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”

It is laughable that when I threw things back at him the other day, he cries foul and accuses me of name-calling. Really? Grow up Wilkie and take your own medicine! Or stop playing the name calling game!

His personal attack against my media officer Trevor Pitt in Saturday’s Cook Islands News was pathetic and regrettable. For goodness sake, Trevor is a public servant in much the same way as all other public servants are. Wilkie has attacked my government numerous times in the past over alleged mistreatment of public servants, yet here he is singling out one in particular. Trevor’s crime? He works for me and helps to counter and correct all of the twisted and unfounded allegations by Wilkie against me and my government. He is a very capable and professional Cook Islander, very good at what he does. I am very sad that Wilkie has descended to that level of gutter politics. But I will not follow him there.

One final point: Wilkie complains loud about his alleged mistreatment by CITV News and tries to point the finger at me or my office. Childish. He has had unfettered and preferential access to Cook Islands News since we became government while my government has had to make do with the crumbs and when Cook Islands News felt when we could have space. Everybody knows this because everybody has seen it. A classic example was last Thursday where a Demo back-bencher from Titikaveka was given front page coverage for bleating about a sacked public servant. Yet there was no substance to the story as it had already been covered in previous editions of Cook Islands News. But it made front page headlines on Thursday! So the moral here Wilkie is this: Grow up. Clean up your act. And for goodness sake, stop whinging when the same treatment you mete out to others is handed back to you! Otherwise get out of the kitchen if the heat is too much for you.

This will be my final word on these matters as I do not intend to participate in these emotionally driven, and childish exchanges, in your letters column.

Henry Puna

Prime Minister

EDITOR: CI News maintains an open invitation to Prime Minister Henry Puna to write his own political column.

When CI News began publishing Wilkie Rasmussen’s weekly column Tropical Chronicles in December last year, the newspaper advised its readers that the same opportunity had been offered to the prime minister several times since his party took office following the 2010 General Election. The prime minister has never accepted or taken up the opportunity to contribute a column.

CI News also advised readers that regular columns by politicians are only justifiable when rival parties or leaders are allowed equal opportunity.

This newspaper maintains a strong stand as being politically neutral, and is unaligned with any party or politicians, past, present and future.

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