Key Points:



Mr Peters was a National MP when Mr Bolger led the party into Government in late 1990 - but after being appointed Minister of Maori Affairs, he did not last long in Cabinet.


He criticised his own Government's economic, fiscal and foreign ownership policies and became increasingly hard to handle. Mr Bolger eventually called him in and told him he proposed to reshuffle his Cabinet. Mr Peters wouldn't be in it.

An angry Mr Peters sat on National's back benches after being sacked from the Cabinet but was expelled from the caucus by a majority vote of its members in 1992. When National's hierarchy rejected Mr Peters' candidacy for the Tauranga electorate, he resigned from the party and Parliament and forced a byelection.

Standing as an independent candidate, Mr Peters won just over 90 per cent of the vote in that byelection in April 1993. Three months later he formed New Zealand First.



New Zealand First won 17 seats in the 1996 election and was "kingmaker" after the first MMP election.

After a protracted nine weeks of post-election negotiations to sort out which major party he would go with, Mr Peters eventually sprang a surprise and went into coalition with National.

He had campaigned on getting rid of the National Government so some voters felt betrayed by a deal in which Mr Peters became Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer under Jim Bolger.

Mr Bolger was rolled by Jenny Shipley and it started to go wrong for the coalition.

In August 1998, after 20 months, it fell apart.

The final straw was National's plan to sell the Government's shares in Wellington Airport - Mr Peters took a stand against it and walked out of a Cabinet discussion on the issue. Mrs Shipley promptly sacked him.



Questions were raised about political donations to Mr Peters or his party by expatriate billionaire Owen Glenn, the wealthy Vela family and property magnate Sir Robert Jones.

After holding up a NO sign to reporters in response to questions about whether he or his party received money from Mr Glenn, Mr Peters was forced to later announce $100,000 did go into a legal fund.

He repeatedly told Prime Minister Helen Clark and the media he had no knowledge of the donation but this was contradicted when Mr Glenn this week claimed Mr Peters asked for the money.

As a hearing before the privileges committee over the Glenn donation continues, a separate Serious Fraud Office probe was announced on Thursday into allegations the Vela and Jones money may not have made it to the intended destination.

Mr Peters vowed to fight the allegations in the morning but was gone by the afternoon.