Sir Owen Glenn donates to National and Labour but spurned by NZ First

Electoral Commission returns show what parties the NBR Rich Lister favoured.

NBR Rich Lister Sir Owen Glenn donated $50,000 to both the National and Labour parties before the general election but NZ First rejected his offer of $10,000.

The Electoral Commission’s returns for political party donations of over $30,000 show Sir Owen’s company, Go Bloodstock New Zealand, handed out $50,000 to the National Party and the same amount to the opposition Labour Party just two days before the general election.

A spokesman for NZ First leader Winston Peters has also confirmed the multi-millionaire also offered $10,000 to the party but his offer was declined.

There was a brouhaha back in 2008 when Mr Peters denied the multi-millionaire had given money to his party.

Parliament’s privileges committee found Mr Peters in contempt for misleading the House and recommended he be censured for failing to declare a donation from Sir Owen toward his 2005 electoral petitions court costs. The businessman had donated $100,000 to Mr Peter’s lawyer to fund his legal costs challenging for the Tauranga seat.

Sir Owen, who is battling liver cancer, has an estimated worth of $400 million on the 2017 NBR Rich List. He was knighted in 2013 for his services to philanthropy though he voluntarily deregistered his Glenn Family Foundation Charitable Trust, which had given more than $33 million to charities around the world, in late 2014 after a Department of Internal Affairs investigation into alleged financial irregularities.

Maori party donations

The Electoral Commission’s return also shows several donations declared this week to the troubled Maori Party.

Party president Tukuoroirangi Morgan gave a total of $43,000 to the party in February and September. Former party candidate Susan Cullen also gave a total $82,511.50 in the same time frame while Wellington consultant Tamati Cairns donated $30,000 on October 1.

NBR has earlier reported that Rich Lister and Mainfreight chairman Bruce Plested, who donated $35,000 to National and $100,000 to the Maori Party in the last election, this year donated only to the Maori Party – a total $150,000.

The party won’t be returning to Parliament after co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell lost the Waiariki seat to Labour’s Tamati Coffey.

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