New Zealand PM Bill English faces questions over alleged secret recordings

The embattled rookie MP has been under pressure to step aside after revelations he secretly taped a staff member in his electorate office. English on Tuesday released a statement he made a year ago to police, saying that lawmaker Todd Barclay told him that Barclay left a recording device running in his electorate office and captured criticism from a staffer.

Todd Barclay has been under fire since details of the recordings were revealed.

Fronting up to media after the announcement, Mr English says he did not discuss the decision to resign with Mr Barclay.

"They have New Zealand First's sympathy", says Mr Peters.

"I hope now that now that the issue is resolved we can get on with the business of government".

She was quoted saying: "I was told if I didn't withdraw the police complaint I could potentially take down the National Party, and there was an [implication] that if National didn't have Barclay in Parliament they were one short to pass legislation".

Andrew Little told Sky News that Bill English 'apparently told (Glenys Dickson) there were these recordings, because Todd Barclay told him.

"He's outlined the reasons he's resigned".

DECEMBER 2017 - Mr Barclay is selected as Clutha-Southland candidate.

He said his main regret was that people he knew "so well fell out so badly". He said that after Dickson quit, she'd been given a settlement that was larger than normal "because of the privacy breach", and that part of it had been paid for from the prime minister's budget.

"He has made a decision [that] is hard, but is the right one and it comes from him understanding that the way these circumstances have evolved just put him in a very hard position".

Bennett dismissed suggestions Barclay hadn't received enough support dealing with the issues in his electorate office.

It looks like John Key dodged a bullet on this one.

He said at the time of questioning he "wasn't clear" about what happened, and said he was "still unclear".

"I am a proud National Party member". He said he referred the matter to Parliamentary Services.

"There clearly is something going on inside the National Party".

"I got into politics because I was inspired by the people I worked for, Bill English, Gerry Brownlee and Hekia Parata".

The National Party MP, the country's youngest, confirmed today in a statement that he would not stand for the Clutha-Southland electorate in September's election. "I have been privileged to serve the people of Clutha-Southland's interests and have thrown my heart and soul into working for them".

"I'm proud of the work I have done, and grateful to have worked with so many passionate and awesome people".

Asked if he wanted Mr Barclay to quit, Mr Joyce said "I don't have a view on that".

There would be no media stand-up and Barclay wouldn't be making any further comment.

  • Leroy Wright