Problems for news media arose ‘too fast’ – former media minister Melissa Lee

Former Media and Communications minister Melissa Lee says she may have been “a little slow” in reacting to dramatic changes in the media landscape.

Lee was last week stripped of her media portfolio and demoted from Cabinet – following criticism of her performance by industry voices and the opposition.

Speaking to reporters at Parliament for the first time since, Lee said she had tried her best in the role – but accepted Prime Minister Christopher Luxon’s judgement.

She said she had been very focused on the media role. However, the sector was going through very difficult times.

“It’s actually come about quite suddenly and I think although we were thinking there need to be some changes, it just came about really too fast and I was trying and things in government actually take time.”

She added: “Perhaps I was a little slow, what I can say is I tried my very best … and I respect the prime minister’s decision.”

She said she remained “very passionate about media and communications” and was disappointed to lose the portfolio.

She had been opposition spokesperson on media for six years before taking up the role as Minister.

Asked if she hoped she could win it back in the future, she said she did, but at present she was focused on her other responsibilities, which include Economic Development.

Asked if her demotion had contributed to National’s loss of support in Monday night’s 1News Verian poll, she repeated her support for Luxon’s decision.

At the same time as Lee was demoted, Penny Simmons lost the disability portfolio.

Paul Goldsmith has taken over as the new Media and Communications Minister.

According to the news on Radio New Zealand

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