New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern sacked Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway on Wednesday over an affair with an ex-staffer. Ardern dismissed the senior cabinet minister after discovering that he had an affair with a former colleague who was working at a government organisation that reported to him.

“The minister has shown a lack of judgment over a period of 12 months. In undertaking this relationship, he has opened himself up to accusations of improperly using his office,” Ardern told reporters. She also emphasised that she wasn’t passing a moral judgment on Less-Galloway. Furthermore, she stated that she deemed him unfit for his role as he was also the minister for workplace relations.

Lees-Galloway, who is married with three children, issued a brief statement. He accepted that he had acted “completely inappropriately” and apologised for letting his family down. Opposition leader Judith Collins disseminated the details of his affair to Ardern’s office on Tuesday. She had urged the public to contact her with allegations about inappropriate parliamentary behaviour. Her demeanour has earned her the moniker “Crusher Collins”.

What You Should Know

  • New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern sacked Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway on Wednesday over an affair with an ex-staffer.
  • Ardern dismissed the senior cabinet minister after discovering that he had an affair with a former colleague who was working at a government organisation that reported to him.
  • Lees-Galloway, who is married with three children, issued a brief statement. He accepted that he had acted “completely inappropriately” and apologised for letting his family down.
  • Opposition leader Judith Collins disseminated the details of his affair to Ardern’s office on Tuesday. Her demeanour has earned her the moniker “Crusher Collins”.

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The dismissal comes amidst a tense political milieu in a run-up to the highly charged general elections in September. Andrew Falloon one of Collins’ colleagues in the centre-right National Party quit earlier this week. He quit because of a series of unsolicited “sexting” messages that he reportedly sent to young women. Consequently, she had appealed to the public to contact her with allegations about inappropriate parliamentary behaviour and misconduct.

The relationship was consensual, Ardern stated, however, the woman’s identity was protected. Finally, the centre-left leader said all ministers needed to ensure their behaviour tenable, particularly when they were two months from a general election.

Also Read: The World Needs More Leaders Like Jacinda Ardern Right Now

Ria Chakraborty is an intern with SheThePeople.TV

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