26 Jun 2017

Barclay scandal 'sad situation' - PM

6:36 pm on 26 June 2017

Prime Minister Bill English is dismissing the Todd Barclay controversy as an employment dispute between two people.

Prime Minister of New Zealand, the Right Honourable Bill English during a stand up with media, after a walk through of a drug rehabilitation centre in Te Atatu today.

Bill English has come under intense scrutiny for his role in what began as an employment dispute in his former electorate. Photo: RNZ / Brad White

Mr Barclay will not stand again at this year's general election after the scandal involving a former electorate staff member and a secret recording she told the police the MP had made of her in their Gore office.

Mr English has been questioned repeatedly over the matter, and is now trying to draw a line under it.

"At the heart of this is just two people who fell out badly, I happen to know that, that's what's at the heart of this.

"And I would hope that as a result of this whole process, where the third step's been Todd Barclay making a decision about leaving the Parliament, that you know there's some resolution to the sad situation of these people whom I know well, who are good people."

The Todd Barclay story dominated the National Party conference over the weekend, with Mr English coming under intense scrutiny for his role in what began as an employment dispute in his former electorate.

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