Got him! Judith nails Twyford

Credit: Luke

Judith Collins has Phil Twyford’s head on a pike. Radio NZ reports: Quote:

Transport Minister Phil Twyford has been stripped of some of his responsibilities after making a phone call on a plane after the aircraft doors had shut.

Mr Twyford offered his resignation to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Thursday, but she declined the offer.

“I made a mistake and I clearly wasn’t thinking straight at the time – and I recognise that. It was unacceptable and I apologise unreservedly.”

Mr Twyford made a one minute phone call to one of his staff while on a plane preparing for take off from Wellington airport on 17 May, he said.

The plane’s doors had shut.

“It was a breach of the Civil Aviation rules,” Mr Twyford said. “That’s unacceptable.”

“It’s particularly inappropriate for a Minister of Transport to do that.

“I clearly at the time thought it was an important matter, but in hindsight it doesn’t excuse or justify breaking the rules.”

Ms Ardern declined his resignation offer, but instead stripped Mr Twyford of his oversight of the Civil Aviation Authority.

Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter would take over those responsibilities.

“I have referred the matter to the Civil Aviation Authority who will follow whatever processes they deem appropriate,” Mr Twyford said.

In a statement, Ms Ardern said she expected all her ministers to act in accordance with the rules.

“As Transport Minister, it is even more important that Phil abides by civil aviation laws.

“It isn’t appropriate for him to have responsibility for the Civil Aviation Authority in the event that it investigates this incident”. End quote.

How did this all unfold? Quote:

The story came to light after National transport spokesperson Judith Collins lodged a written question about the incident.

But Mr Twyford said he hadn’t deliberately kept quiet about it.

“I literally hadn’t given it any thought from the moment that it happened and I regret that. As soon as it was brought to my attention, we sought to put it right.”

Ms Collins said she’d been notified of the incident by a member of the public and so lodged a question about it.

She said she thought Mr Twyford had done the right thing in offering his resignation.

“It’s entirely appropriate – you might recall Gerry Brownlee had Transport taken off him when he had breached rules around civil aviation as well.” End quote.

Not just a question, lots of questions, lodged today, with lots of specific details leaving Twyford with no wriggle room:

11233 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

Was he on flight NZ460 from Wellington to Auckland on 17 May 2018?

11231 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, was he travelling for ministerial purposes?

11230 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, was anyone from his Ministerial office sitting with him?

11229 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls when he was on the plane?

11228 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls when the door of the plane was shut?

11227 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls when the plane was in motion and reversing?

11226 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls while the plane was taxiing?

11225 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls after the safety video had commenced?

11224 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls during the safety video?

11223 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls after the safety video had finished?

11222 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

Was he on flight NZ460 from Wellington to Auckland on 17 May 2018?

11221 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, was he travelling for ministerial purposes?

11220 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, was anyone from his Ministerial office sitting with him?

11219 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls when he was on the plane?

11218 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls after the safety video had commenced?

11217 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls when the door of the plane was shut?

11216 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls while the plane was taxiing?

11215 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls when the plane was in motion and reversing?

11214 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls during the safety video?

11213 (2018). Hon Judith Collins to the Minister of Transport

If he was on flight NZ460 on 17 May 2018, did he make or receive any phone calls after the safety video had finished?

That my good friends is how you put a minister’s head on a pike. First blood to Judith Collins… and, as predicted, it was Phil Twyford.

But for the gutlessness of the prime minister, Phil Twyford would be gone for all money.

It seems that Jacinda Ardern has retained him as a minister because she needs someone to make Clare Curran look good.


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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.

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