Joyce takes leave

The New Zealand Herald - - WORLD -

Aus­tralian Deputy Prime Min­is­ter Barn­aby Joyce is tak­ing leave to deal with the “in­tense public fo­cus” on his per­sonal life and won’t stand in as the na­tion’s leader while Prime Min­is­ter Mal­colm Turn­bull is away. Turn­bull, who is head­ing to Wash­ing­ton next week, told Par­lia­ment yes­ter­day that leave had been ap­proved for the em­bat­tled Na­tion­als leader from Fe­bru­ary 19 to 25. Joyce has been un­der fire over his ac­cep­tance of a rent-free apart­ment of­fered to him by busi­ness­man Greg Maguire and whether any rules have been bro­ken in re­gard to jobs pro­vided to his for­mer staffer and now part­ner Vikki Cam­pion. Fi­nance Min­is­ter Mathias Cor­mann will be Act­ing Prime Min­is­ter dur­ing the pe­riod, as he is gov­ern­ment leader in the Se­nate. Mean­while, Turn­bull yes­ter­day banned sex be­tween min­is­ters and staff and rounded on his deputy for a “shock­ing er­ror of judg­ment” by hav­ing an af­fair with Cam­pion. Joyce and Cam­pion are ex­pect­ing a baby in April.

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