Former Prime Minister Julia Gillard
Former Prime Minister Julia Gillard

Gillard says Xenophon ballot rigging memory 'flawed'

FORMER Prime Minister Julia Gillard has apologised to independent Senator Nick Xenophon over claims in her autobiography he was involved in rigging student ballots.

The apology relates to a mention of a ballot irregularity during student elections at the University of Adelaide in the 1970s.

Ms Gillard falsely claimed on page 320 of her book that Senator Xenophon was temporarily excluded from the university for stuffing a ballot box full of voting papers he had secured somehow.

Ms Gillard's apology appeared as a paid advertisement on Thursday in various newspapers across the nation.

Ms Gillard, in a statement released via Twitter on Thursday, said she was happy to apologise because her recollection of the full details of the event were flawed.

"It is a pity full details of this event are not readily ascertainable by any interested person," she said.

"Regrettably and oddly the student newspaper archives do not hold the relevant reports on those events.

"Senator Xenophon's claim against me personally for defamation is now resolved without any payment of damages."

Random House, who published the autobiography, reached an undisclosed settlement with Senator Xenophon over the false claims earlier this year.