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Prime Minister John Key said today he had accepted with sadness the resignation of Dr Nick Smith from his Ministerial portfolios.
The resignation follows questions about Dr Smith’s judgement in supporting an ACC claimant while he was Minister during the previous term.
“It is important that Ministers are seen to actively manage both real and perceived conflicts of interest in the exercise of their duties,” says Mr Key.
“I have always expected high standards from my Ministers - and I will continue to do so.
“Dr Smith has been a hard-working and diligent Minister, but perceptions do matter and he knows he has let himself down.
“I am very disappointed to have lost such a capable Minister. Dr Smith has made a huge contribution to the National Party and to this Government.
“Dr Smith did excellent work in the climate change, local government and environment portfolios. His obvious expertise in these, and other, complex areas will continue to be valued by our Caucus.”
The following Ministers will act in portfolios previously held by Dr Smith: Gerry Brownlee in Local Government, Craig Foss in Climate Change Issues and Chris Finlayson in Environment.