Sorry seems to be the hardest word

Demanding politicians apologise can get rather cringeworthy at times, they can wind up being almost like the apology Father Jack Hackett gave to Bishop Brennan.

But Labour is focussing now on the fact that the only apology, such as it was, issued by John Key last year was to me.

Why they OIA’d that is beyond me…what a waste of time.

John Key delivered just a solitary written apology in 2014, ironically to one of New Zealand’s most controversial political figures.

According to Key “to the best of my recollection”, the prime minister wrote just one letter of apology this year, parliamentary questions asked by the Labour Party show.

Perhaps ironically, that single apology was delivered to Cameron Slater, the WhaleOil blogger who largely supports National but has brought much controversy upon the Government.  

Key wrote a letter of apology to Slater earlier this year in relation to the Government’s decision to release an email Slater wrote to associates claiming that former justice minister Judith Collins was part of a campaign to undermine former Serious Fraud Office boss Adam Feeley.

In November Key was forced to admit he had misled Parliament after he claimed he had not contacted Slater about a report into the SIS, after texts emerged showing the two discussing the report.

Labour leader Andrew Little said it was ironic that Key had apologised to Slater, when he had not apologised for what Labour claims was a “smear campaign” run out of his office which used Slater to attack opponents. Little also said Key should have considered an apology over Iain Rennie’s handling of an investigation into former Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority chief executive Roger Sutton over claims of sexual harassment.

“He’s quite comfortable apologising to someone like [Slater] even though you’d have to wonder about the level of hurt or harm caused to Cameron Slater,” Little said.

It will be Andrew Little issuing apologies soon….for his own party’s role in a much worse, and illegal smear campaign.

When the pressure comes on for him and David Cunliffe to apologise I’ll just bet that Elton John’s song will be prophetic.


– Hamish Rutherford, Fairfax

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.