Here’s MP Nash’s statement on his sacking from Cabinet, as posted on his Facebook page:

First and foremost, I would like to apologise to the Prime Minister, Cabinet, caucus colleagues, my staff and the amazing, hard working Labour members of Napier for letting them down and causing an unwanted distraction at a time when we all need to be laser-focussed on delivering for New Zealanders and returning Chris Hipkins as Prime Minister this coming election.

To the people of Napier, whom it has been an absolute pleasure and privilege serving and representing in parliament, I also offer my apologies. For now, I will continue to be your local MP and will work hard to ensure you get everything you need and deserve in your journey of recovery after Cyclone Gabrielle.

But most of all, I offer an apology to my family. These events after often more traumatic for our partners and children than they are for us; so, to Sarah and our wonderful children, I am truly sorry. You have supported me in good times and bad, and for this I am eternally grateful.

I do want to be clear: I got this wrong. Too many times. Fair cop. The Prime Minister did what he needed to do. I accept this with humility.

I have always considered the greatest challenge – but also the greatest opportunity – in politics is delivery. Execution. Getting stuff done and coming up with solutions to the issues of the day. I tend to go hard when often a softer approach would perhaps deliver superior results over the longer term.

In times of crisis – like Covid-19 or March 15th or White Island or the Cyclones: all of which I had a ministerial responsibility for response – this hard execution-focussed approach can work, but I absolutely acknowledge that I played outside the rules and that’s unacceptable. Never ever for personal gain, or to benefit anyone other than the people of NZ and my Napier constituents, but that doesn’t matter in the end. I let them down by not getting it right.

My wife has often commented that I need to work on my EQ. She’s right, so it’s time to take her very sage advice as I embark on the next phase of my journey.

So now it’s on to the next challenge. There will be no unnecessary, messy and expensive by-election – this is the last thing our city needs.

So, for the meantime I will remain as the MP for Napier and continue to advocate for solutions to the issues that are important to the people of my hometown; first and foremost, recovery from Gabrielle.

Stuart Nash

Member of Parliament for Napier


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