Wellington MPs were prominent during yesterday’s dramatic question time in Parliament, when Justice Minister Judith Collins was under continuing pressure about her connections with the export company Oravida. Her husband is a director of five Oravida companies.
Wellington South MP Grant Robertson challenged the Minister about her visit to Oravida’s offices when she was in Shanghai in October.
He said later: “Rather than doing work in her portfolio area, she orchestrated a visit which official documents describe as a being to ‘increase the profile’ of her husband’s company. Judith Collins has consistently misled Parliament and the public over her visit to Oravida.”
Hutt South MP Trevor Mallard was told to leave the House after an interjection in which he suggested that Ms Collins’ family had made quite a lot of money from Oravida.
Radio New Zealand reported the incident, in which the minister objected and said she was offended by Mr Mallard’s insinuation.
Speaker David Carter asked Mr Mallard to withdraw the comment but the MP refused.
Mr Mallard: “Mr Speaker, I will not withdraw the truth …”
Mr Carter: Order, order – then the Honourable Trevor Mallard will leave the chamber.”