Ayesha Verrall replaces Megan Woods as science-sector Minister

The science sector has a new Minister after the Cabinet reshuffle announced today.

But this was not highlighted in the Prime Minister’s press statement, which perhaps is a measure of where research and science rank in the Government’s priorities.

Jacinda Ardern explained that she has made changes to her Cabinet line-up following the decision of senior Minister Kris Faafoi to resign from Parliament and Speaker Trevor Mallard’s nomination to a European diplomatic posting.

The changes will take effect following a ceremony at Government House tomorrow afternoon.

The press statement featured these points:

  • Kris Faafoi resigns from Parliament. Kiri Allan promoted to Justice Minister, Michael Wood picks up Immigration
  • Speaker Trevor Mallard to end 35 year parliamentary career in mid-August as he prepares to take up a diplomatic post in Europe. Adrian Rurawhe to be nominated as Speaker
  • Priyanca Radhakrishnan moves into Cabinet and gains Associate Workplace Relations and Safety
  • Kieran McAnulty becomes a Minister outside of Cabinet with a focus on regional issues – picking up Emergency Management and Racing. Duncan Webb to take over as Chief Whip
  • Chris Hipkins takes over Police and passes COVID-19 Response to Ayesha Verrall

Much further down in the statement, the PM says:

“Dr Ayesha Verrall has played a critical role in our ongoing COVID-19 management this term. Having moved from the emergency to the ongoing response now is the right time for her to pick up the COVID-19 Response portfolio. She also picks up Research, Science and Innovation.”

The statement makes no mention of Megan Woods losing – or surrendering – the science portfolio to concentrate on housing responsibilities.

Source:  Prime Minister’s Office  



Author: Bob Edlin

Editor of AgScience Magazine and Editor of the AgScience Blog