Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark

“Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said. 

“Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses. 

“But right now, my priority is our collective fight against COVID-19. We cannot afford massive disruption in the health sector or to our response. For that reason, and that reason alone, Dr Clark will maintain his role. 

“But he does need to pay a price. He broke the rules. 

“While he maintains his Health portfolio, I am stripping him of his role as Associate Finance Minister and demoting him to the bottom of our Cabinet rankings. 

“I expect better, and so does New Zealand,” Jacinda Ardern said.