New Zealand justice minister Kiri Allan resigns after car crash

Monday, 24 July 2023 (11:20 IST)
New Zealand's Justice Minister, Kiri Allan, resigned Monday after police charged her with reckless driving.
Allan was involved in a car crash on Sunday in the capital city Wellington, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins said.
She was detained at the central police station and released four hours later. 
Police have charged her with careless use of a motor vehicle, as well as refusing to accompany a police officer.
She was handed an infringement notice after breath analyzers detected excess alcohol content.
Allan apologizes for actions, talks about mental health struggle
Hipkins said he spoke with Allan on Monday morning and told her he thought she was no longer in a fit state to remain a minister.
Allan agreed and offered to resign from her position, Hipkins said. She will remain a member of parliament for now.
Allan said she was sorry for her actions, adding "Over recent weeks I've faced a number of personal difficulties."
"I took time off to address those, and believed I was OK to juggle those challenges with the pressure of being a minister," she said.
"My actions yesterday show I wasn't OK, and I've let myself and my colleagues down."
Allan had recently taken time off for her mental health after being involved in a public split with her partner and accusations of poor working relationships with staff.
Hipkins said that while "her alleged actions are inexcusable, I've been advised she was experiencing extreme emotional distress at the time of the incident."
"Her personal struggles with mental health have been well documented and it appears some of those issues came to a head yesterday" he added.
New Zealand general election due October
The incident was the latest in a series of missteps involving government ministers with less than three months to go before general elections in October.
Last month, the transport and immigration minister resigned, and, in May, the country's customs minister was fired. In March, the country's police minister was also fired.
Hipkins became prime minister in January after his predecessor Jacinda Ardern stepped down.
His Labour government appears to have fallen just behind the center-right opposition National Party, according to opinion polls this month.

Read on Webdunia

Related Article