Kerre McIvor: If Mallard believes what he's saying, he should say it outside Parliament

Author
Kerre McIvor,
Publish Date
Wed, 5 May 2021, 4:20PM
(Photo / NZ Herald)
(Photo / NZ Herald)

Kerre McIvor: If Mallard believes what he's saying, he should say it outside Parliament

Author
Kerre McIvor,
Publish Date
Wed, 5 May 2021, 4:20PM

The Speaker of the House needs to go. 

He has continued a vendetta against a former staffer, a man he labelled as a rapist - a claim that cost taxpayers more than $330,000. 

We paid Mallard's $175,000 legal fees, this is a man who earns $296,000 per year plus expenses and who has been paid by the taxpayer since he was MP for Hamilton West since 1984. 

You'd think he'd have enough stashed away to cover his own legal bills, but there we go. 

We also paid a $158,000 ex-gratia payment to the former staffer to settle the defamation claim. 

Now he's re-litigated the affair all over again, trying to paint himself as a champion for women and victims and using Parliamentary Privilege to denigrate the staffer all over again. 

He told the house he did not agree that he'd destroyed the former staffer's life; he did that when according to Mallard, he sexually assaulted a woman. 

According to Barry Soper, Newstalk ZB's political editor, what the staffer did was hug the woman, which might have been unwelcome, but does not constitute serious sexual assault.  Barry says we should all care about what Mallard said and where he said it because it's a gross abuse of power and privilege.  

So, I think we do need to care. You may think it’s knocking the government, what’s $330,000 when we are paying a million a day to hoteliers? As National MP Chris Bishop says, come out and say it without the protection of privilege.

He won’t, because then he’ll be personally liable.

LISTEN ABOVE