24 February, 2011
PM reallocates portfolios to put focus on quake
Prime Minister John Key today reallocated some Ministerial portfolio responsibilities, for the foreseeable future, to allow Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee to focus solely on overseeing earthquake recovery.
Mr Key says the scale of the earthquake which struck on Tuesday means that it requires the full attention of a dedicated Minister, and Mr Brownlee’s other portfolios have been reallocated to reflect that.
“There is a very big job ahead of us and it’s important we have a senior Minister dedicated solely to it,” Mr Key says.
“The Government is going to do everything it can to support the recovery and rebuilding of Christchurch.”
To assist Mr Brownlee in his role and to reflect the size of the recovery job, Maurice Williamson has been appointed as Associate Minister for Canterbury Earthquake Recovery.
Mr Brownlee’s other portfolios have been temporarily reallocated to other members of the Cabinet.
“Simon Power will be the Acting Leader of the House. David Carter will be the Acting Minister for Economic Development and Hekia Parata will be the Acting Minister of Energy and Resources,” Mr Key says.
“These changes have been made for the foreseeable future and will be kept under review as the recovery progresses.
“It is my expectation that all Government agencies involved in the recovery effort will work closely with Mr Brownlee.
“The Ad Hoc Cabinet Committee on Canterbury Earthquake Recovery, chaired by Mr Brownlee, will meet regularly to ensure active Ministerial coordination.
“Mr Brownlee will also have close working relationships with Civil Defence Minister John Carter and National Civil Defence Director John Hamilton to ensure that the Civil Defence and recovery and rebuilding work takes place hand in hand,” Mr Key says.
“As we move forward after Tuesday’s earthquake, the people of Christchurch and its surrounding areas can be certain that the Government is firmly focused on getting their city back on its feet.”