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Ministers Stand Down

Prime Minister Helen Clark said today she had accepted the requests of Marian Hobbs and Phillida Bunkle to stand down from their ministerial positions, following close discussion with the Deputy Prime Minister Jim Anderton.

"Both ministers feel that the sustained pressure coming on them from the continuing inquiries into their enrolment status and their eligibility for parliamentary allowances makes it impossible for them to do their jobs effectively," Helen Clark said.

"They have asked that they stand down from the Ministry while the inquiries of the Registrar of Electors and the Auditor General are completed.

"I suggest that all MPs and their parties reflect on the extent to which MPs' often complicated circumstances open them up for similar scrutiny.

"I have accepted the two resignations.

Helen Clark said she was reassigning the duties of the two ministers as follows:

Biosecurity Jim Sutton
Broadcasting Steve Maharey
Consumer Affairs Jim Anderton
Customs Jim Anderton
Environment Pete Hodgson
National Archives Judith Tizard
National Library Judith Tizard

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