25 Jun 2009

New Zealand MP apologises for offensive comments about Tonga

7:26 pm on 25 June 2009

A New Zealand MP, David Garrett, has apologised unreservedly for comments he made about his behaviour towards women that have caused offence in Tonga.

Mr Garrett, who is a member of the ACT Party, was reprimanded after making a lewd comment to a female member of his party's parliamentary staff.

In his defence, Mr Garrett said he now understood that the kind of thing that might have been OK in a law firm in Tonga, was not OK in Parliament.

The Secretary of the Tonga Law Society, Dana Stephenson, says the society met this afternoon to discuss the matter.

"The executive council certainly wants to make it clear that unsolicited sexual comments against females in the workplace are totally unacceptable and is not a regular feature of any organisation in Tonga, law firms or otherwise."

Dana Stephenson.

David Garrett has written to her to apologise and express his deep regret for making such an offensive comment.