Australian Deputy Prime Minister and National Party leader Barnaby Joyce has been caught in the dual citizenship controversy across the Tasman.
Several senators have resigned, or are facing scrutiny, over their citizenship status.
Under the Australian constitution, anyone with dual citizenship cannot stand for federal election.
Mr Dunne said Mr Joyce’s father was a New Zealand citizen and he passed citizenship on to his son.
“It’s automatically passed on, I don’t know whether he (Mr Joyce) knew or not,” Mr Dunne said.
“He says he didn’t know, he says he was under the belief his father had renounced the New Zealand citizenship.
“But the fact is it is all irrelevant – if he was eligible to receive the citizenship at the time, under our legislation he does, regardless of his subsequent circumstances,” Mr Dunne said.
Mr Joyce said this afternoon he was asking the High Court to rule on his citizenship status and whether he was eligible to be in Parliament, the ABC reported.
He said legal advice suggested he has not breached the constitution, but the court should consider the matter.
Mr Joyce told Parliament the New Zealand High Commission contacted him last Thursday to say he might be a citizen of New Zealand because his father was born there.
“The New Zealand High Commission contacted me to advise that on the basis of preliminary advice from their Department of Internal Affairs, which had received inquiries from the New Zealand Labour Party, they considered that I might be a citizen by descent of New Zealand.” . .
Australia’s laws and politics are their own business.
Why on earth was the New Zealand Labour Party meddling in it?