Sir Michael Cullen has died of cancer, aged 76. It was well known he had terminal cancer.
Dr Cullen, as he was most well known as, was one of New Zealand’s most substantive politicians of the last 80 years. You didn’t have to agree with him, to appreciate his talent as both a parliamentarian and a Minister.
His two major legacies will be KiwiSaver which has over $62 billion in it and the Cullen Fund which has over $45 billion in it.
I recall working as an opposition staffer in the early 2000s and often Cullen would have half the staff in the leader’s office in fits of laughter as he skewered some poor National MP who was trying to take him on.
Cullen was no saint (but who is), but he was regarded as a very good Minister to work for. Many of his former staff speak highly of him.
My thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.