On the day Richard Worth was forced to resign as a Minister, Key explicitly told Parliament the criminal investigation into Worth was the reason why he couldn’t say what had caused him to lose confidence.
Hon Phil Goff: Why did the Prime Minister attempt to keep the reasons for the resignation secret this morning?
Hon JOHN KEY: The police are going to conduct a preliminary investigation, as they noted in a press release they issued. I think any New Zealander is entitled to a fair investigation. I do not think it would be appropriate for me to contaminate that investigation by making loose comments.
Hon Phil Goff: What is the nature of the police complaint again Dr Worth?
Hon JOHN KEY: I am not at liberty to say.
As ‘gobsmacked’ points out in the comments, Opposition MPs did not pursue the issue because when the PM says he cannot comment because of an ongoing police investigation, MPs must accept his word.
The two stories don’t seem to add up. It would appear that Key has either lied directly to the entire press gallery or he’s deliberately misled Parliament. Both are very serious matters and give rise to plenty more questions.