David Clark not doing interviews despite assurances from Ardern and Robertson

Minister of Health David Clark was a no show on Q+A today and has refused other requests for interviews despite the Prime Minister and Grant Robertson claiming he is always available (and knowing he is refusing).

On Thursday Stuff reported Robertson as saying “He’s available to front anytime”.

But as Jack Tame pointed out he reneged on a scheduled Q+A interview for today so wasn’t always available as stated. RNZ Live referred to it as “a no show’.

Also from RNZ Live:

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was grilled by journalists as to why Health Minister David Clark has declined some interviews this weekend. She said others had fronted, he was at home at lockdown and he would continue to be available for interviews.

Tova O’Brien reported:

Dr Clark refused Newshub’s repeated requests for an interview, instead sending a short statement.

So according to Robertson and Ardern, Clark is “available to front any time” and “would continue to be available for interviews”, but according to journalists he isn’t.

The Minister of Health, during the biggest health crisis for decades, is remote from the centre of Government and Ministry of Health activity (working from home in Dunedin) and is not giving interviews despite the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance saying he is available (but knowing he isn’t doing interviews).

Something is obviously not right here. Actually probably three things, Ardern, Robertson, and Clark’s application to his job.


It looks like journalists are onto the Missing In Action issue now.

Leave a comment

21 Comments

  1. oldlaker

     /  5th April 2020

    Having a Min of Health break the lockdown rules that are designed as a health measure is like a Minister of Finance caught with his hand in the till.
    No wonder Clark doesn’t want to front…

    Reply
  2. Kitty Catkin

     /  5th April 2020

    There’s no excuse nowadays with our technology. He could even use a phone; people would excuse the possible poor quality of the video.

    It’s inexcusable that the PM is lying about this and it makes her and Grant Robertson look cagey and dishonest.

    Reply
    • duperez

       /  5th April 2020

      Honesty seems to be an important thing Kitty. Should we just look at the shingles on the door J Ardern (Labour) and G Robertson (Labour) and assign ‘cagey and dishonest’ as in ‘business as usual? Why the particular need to mete it out now?🙃

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  5th April 2020

        There is too much at stake for dishonesty at the moment.

        Why do they keep saying that he’s about to be interviewed when he never is ?

        Reply
  3. David

     /  5th April 2020

    Robertson and Ardern are lying to the media, they have locked the Minister of Stealth down because they know how badly he plays in the media and how woeful he is at his job, they were hiding him in Dunedin and that was before he did something monumentally dumb.

    Reply
    • Blazer

       /  5th April 2020

      it could be worse David.

      One National M.P refuses to engage with English speaking journalists…believe it or…not!

      Reply
      • Conspiratoor

         /  5th April 2020

        Reply
      • David

         /  5th April 2020

        Nope I dont. But why isnt your minister of health doing interviews in the middle of this, probably the only person in his position in the free world that is hiding/being hidden.

        Reply
      • Duker

         /  5th April 2020

        One ?
        There was a far north MP who suddenly went ‘dark’
        There was a Southland Mp who stayed at home instead of doing his job and then when finally back in Wellington wouldnt answer any questions except through his office secretary
        There was a Botany MP that was put on Sick leave when Simon had a falling out that was an big lie concocted by Simon and Paula

        Wasnt there a PM who said ‘Sorry’ but went Awol in spite of loving to go to coffee shops

        Reply
        • As far as I know there’s only been one Minister of Health who has either been sidelined or has sidelined himself during the biggest health issue in a century.

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  5th April 2020

            https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/2018739675/covid-19-cabinet-ministers-meet-remotely
            https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/120499815/coronavirus-parliament-to-shut-down-with-no-fixed-return-date

            You have been covering the issue of the shutdown exhaustively but then suggest it doesnt apply here . All Nzers are Quarantined including Ministers.

            Have you seen his schedule to know that he has been sidelined or that is guesswork based on one excursion , and thats what other are guessing too?

            The bike ride was OK but the Drive in a car was completely off,
            Plenty of times on tough days I would take a clean break for 60 min + at lunchtime when my normal practice was have lunch at work.

            Reply
            • David

               /  5th April 2020

              I am enjoying your defence of the minister Duker, keep stretching and stretching.
              No need for him to be at the office at all, whats there to do, might as well take in some air for the afternoon. Answering questions from the 4th estate at a time of crisis in his portfolio, no need fella when we have an unelected bureaucrat who can be thrown under any passing bus if something goes awry.

            • Duker

               /  5th April 2020

              I have said the drive to ride a bike was nuts, hell I don’t even like that it’s even allowed to ride bikes as an essential activity.
              There isn’t dispute over the facts of the situation, he’s done the perfunctory apology , but not the crass non apology typical of Keys time or flat out denial ( remember the interview about reducing wages or the new BMWs) or calling the cops on the 4th estate ( the tea tapes) or setting Glucina the gossip columnist to do a personal attack on who ever complained of a transgresson(waitress)

  4. duperez

     /  5th April 2020

    Clark should be available for interviews. About the covid-19 situation. Not about him personally but about the situation of covid-19 in the country.

    A cacophony of, “We want to know, we have a right to know” and wanting Ardern or Robertson or anyone else to front up about his silly actions suggests cabin fever is hitting and without other sports off the agenda a bit of bloodlust lynch mob sport is need to sate the boredom.

    The media has the big top pitched for a circus and unfortunately for them the audience, marooned at home, is pissed off the star act is a no show.

    Reply
    • David

       /  5th April 2020

      Everyone I talked to wants to know why he is in Dunedin and not at work full time on a week day.

      Reply
      • Duker

         /  5th April 2020

        https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/2018739675/covid-19-cabinet-ministers-meet-remotely
        Level 4 lockdown is for every one to work remotely and or stay away from work.. havent you been keeping up?
        there would be no one in his Beehive office ,indeed in Parliament

        Reply
        • David

           /  5th April 2020

          Not the bloody minister of health, jeez Duker thats ridiculous.

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  5th April 2020

            Even the CEO of Fonterra says he’s been on video conferences and will take calls while he is ‘out for a walk’ from the office.
            So you think he should be out meeting officials and greating people like Boris Johnson did?

            Reply
      • duperez

         /  5th April 2020

        I haven’t talked to everyone, there’s only of me, but I’d like to know how you know he’s not at work full time on a week day.

        Reply
      • Sore back, sore knees.

         /  5th April 2020

        I’ve been in the Beehive for the last 5 days, and have only seen two ministers – the PM, and Robertson. All the others are working from home, even the Wellington-domiciled ones. The PMO is literally down to about 5 people physically in the office.

        Reply
        • Blazer

           /  6th April 2020

          good to hear some information from an insider…how long have you been a cleaner there?

          Reply

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