© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2020

Jacinda Ardern defends controversial meeting between Broadcasting Minister and RNZ

Aaron Dahmen
Carol & Clare
Carol Hirschfeld resigned after failing to declare a meeting with Broadcasting Minister Clare Curran  Otago Daily Times / Edited by Aaron Dahmen

Carol Hirschfeld resigned after reports revealed a December meeting with Broadcasting Minister Clare Curran was pre-planned.

Hirschfeld stood down from her role as Head of News at the state broadcaster on Tuesday.

She told RNZ chief executive Paul Thompson the meeting had been a coincidence in December last year. 

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern argued the meeting was well-documented and cannot be classed as secret.

"Details of the discussion are freely available in the public domain."

Broadcasting Minister Clare Curran admitted she was naive in her handling of the meeting, where the future of RNZ and its role in New Zealand media was allegedly discussed.

Curran contacted RNZ about Hirschfeld's differing accounts when she became aware of it.

"I never intentionally concealed any information."

Carol Hirschfeld's resignation comes after the Government promised to significantly boost funding for the state broadcaster.