New Zealand: Jacinda Ardern apologises for MP insult caught on mic

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has apologised for insulting a political rival in parliament.

The offensive comment was picked up by microphones following a question by David Seymour, leader of the opposition ACT party.

Mr Seymour objected to the remark and asked the House of Representatives speaker to have it withdrawn.

Ms Ardern – whose party has fallen behind in polls in the past 12 months – later said she had apologised.

In a lively debate on Tuesday, the prime minister took issue when Mr Seymour asked her to give an example of her “making a mistake, apologising for it properly, and fixing it.”

Ms Ardern said there had been a number of occasions where her Labour administration had acknowledged there had not been “perfect responses”, including a key element of the country’s Covid response.

“We have openly said, for instance, that [managed isolation and quarantine] was something that was very difficult at the time and that there were people that were affected by it…

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