Thu. Dec 1st, 2022


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Watch live: Speaker Trevor Mallard faces MPs’ questions over $330k payout

1 min read

Speaker Trevor Mallard is set to face MPs’ questions over spending $330,000 of taxpayer money settling a defamation case against him.

Mallard was sued last year after wrongly alleging a man accused of rape was working at Parliament.

After settling the case 18 months later, Mallard last week personally apologised to the man and revealed the legal costs included a $158,000 payout to the plaintiff and more than $175,000 in lawyers fees.

In the apology, Mallard said it was “incorrect” of him to suggest the man had been accused of rape “as that term is defined in the Crimes Act 1961”.

Opposition parties said they had lost confidence in Mallard and at the weekend he agreed to appear before the Governance and Administration Select Committee to answer questions.

The select committee is set to begin at 1pm.

National leader Judith Collins has called for Mallard to apologise and offer his resignation.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has said she still has confidence in Mallard and that he was still the right person for the job, pointing to his work on making Parliament a better workplace.

Mallard ensured he was able to be accountable to Parliamentary processes, like written questions and select committees, by including a clause in his agreement with the man.

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