Trevor Mallard has confirmed he is unfit to be Parliament’s Speaker by failing to answer several important questions relating to the false rape accusation saga that cost taxpayers more than $330,000, Shadow Leader of the House Chris Bishop says.
“Trevor Mallard failed to justify his actions before Parliament last night. Taxpayers deserved straight answers after he cost them more than $330,000 but those answers never came.
“The big question Trevor Mallard repeatedly dodged is: why did he not just apologise once he knew he had wrongly accused the Parliamentary staffer of rape, which in his own words was within 24 hours, rather than letting this drag for 18 months at taxpayers’ expense?
“Taxpayers are also still in the dark as to how much more Mr Mallard’s subsequent behaviour, including his refusal to apologise and the ‘threats’ that followed, has cost them in damages.”
Other questions that remain unanswered for Mr Mallard, the Prime Minister and Labour are:
- Why did Mr Mallard’s lawyers tell the plaintiff in the defamation case that he intended to plead truth (ie. prove he was a rapist) when he knew that claim was incorrect?
- Did Mr Mallard follow through on this threat and plead truth in any statement of defence filed with the court, when he knew that claim was incorrect?
- Why did Mr Mallard’s lawyers tell the plaintiff in the defamation case that he intended to defend any claim “vigorously”? In particular, why did his lawyers say to the plaintiff that “the question of his reputation, and his conduct, will be very much the centrepiece of any public proceeding”?
- Was the Prime Minister aware that Mr Mallard knew the rape claim to be false but had threatened the plaintiff that he intended to claim it was true anyway?
- Did he mislead the Select Committee by stating he had no knowledge of the case when it is apparent he was briefed twice in the issue by his CEO?
“Trevor Mallard behaved in a threatening and bullying way. In any other workplace across New Zealand he would be sacked,” Mr Bishop says.
“The Prime Minister might like to reflect on the fact that if Trevor Mallard was a National MP, she would be the first in line to call for his resignation.”
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