6 Mar 2020

Sir Michael Cullen resigns from roles due to stage-four lung cancer

8:50 pm on 6 March 2020

Sir Michael Cullen is resigning from his DHB roles, revealing that he has stage-four lung cancer.

Sir Michael Cullen at the Tax Working Group announcement.

Sir Michael Cullen. Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

Sir Michael, who was a deputy prime minister and finance minister for Helen Clark's Labour government, announced this evening he was resigning from his roles at Bay of Plenty and Lakes DHBs.

"What was initially a CT scan of my heart has resulted in a clear diagnosis of Stage IV small cell lung cancer with multiple secondaries in my liver," he said in a statement.

"Chemotherapy is likely to extend my lifespan somewhat, but it is clear to me I will not be in a fit state to carry on all that I have been doing in recent months."

He said he had already stood down as lead claims negotiator for Te Kotahitanga o Ngāti Tūwharetoa, but would remain as chair of EQC to oversee it during the release of Dame Sylvia Cartwright's report into it.