Former National Party leader Don Brash and his wife Je Lan have separated.
The Sunday Star-Times has been told the pair, who were married for 18 years, split earlier this week and that Brash had left their home in Glendowie, east Auckland.
The couple's relationship hit the headlines in September last year after then-opposition leader Brash was challenged in a National Party caucus meeting over rumours he was having an affair with wealthy businesswoman Diane Foreman.
At the time neither Brash nor Foreman, who is married to multi- millionaire businessman Bill Foreman, would confirm or deny the relationship.
But yesterday, an angry Foreman said while she had heard Brash and Je Lan had parted, "he is categorically not with me. It's absolutely nothing to do with me. There is no way he is with me, there is no way he left for me, there is just no way. I am not involved in this in any way."
She said "a lot of people knew" that Brash and Je Lan had separated.
Brash issued a statement last year admitting that he and his wife had been "having some difficulties" in their marriage, and he had taken leave to spend time with his family.
"Je Lan and I are working through these difficulties and we are both committed to making our marriage work," Brash said then. But asked yesterday whether he could confirm he had left his wife, Brash said: "I don't want to comment on that at all."
He and Je Lan have a son together.
- Sunday Star Times