Stuff reports:

The “struggling mother” who harangued Invercargill mayor Tim Shadbolt for almost 10 minutes on television was actually Environment Southland’s chairwoman Ali Timms.

Timms admitted the deception when confronted by a journalist yesterday.

She said she had done it as a practical joke . . . and when questioned further, Timms hung up on the reporter.

The call was made to the city council’s live talkback show on Cue TV last Wednesday night. Timms claimed to be “Ruby”, a mother of two who was struggling to make ends meet after her husband had been laid off from the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter.

Timms is an elected official. To pretend to be someone else to have a go at another elected official is just dishonest and unacceptable. She should resign – or her Coucnil Council should sack her.

Around 20 years ago John Carter did a prank call. But that at least was done in humour, not as a political attack. And he did get sacked as senior whip for it.

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