New Zealand’s Justice Minister has crashed out of cabinet after smashing her car and resisting arrest as police tried to charge her with reckless driving.
The once up-and-coming star of progressive politics resigned from the cabinet on Monday after the PM advised her it wasn’t a good look for a Justice Minister to be charged with a criminal offencehttps://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/jul/24/kiri-allan-resigns-car-crash-new-zealand-justice-minister.
Kiri Allan was involved in the car accident around 9pm on Sunday in Wellington and was detained by police for four hours. She was charged with careless use of a motor vehicle, and refusing to accompany a police officer. She was also issued with an infringement notice for driving with excess breath alcohol.
Just months ago she appeared alongside then Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announcing tough new measures to crack down on fleeing drivers.
Allan’s latest mishap comes not long after she returned to work after time off for mental health issues, having been involved in a public split with her partner and accusations of poor working relationships with staff.
Prime Minister Chris Hipkins said he told Allan that she was not in a fit state to remain a minister.
“While her alleged actions are inexcusable, I’ve been advised she was experiencing extreme emotional distress at the time of the incident,” Hipkins said.
“Her recent personal struggles with mental health have been well documented and it appears some of those issues came to a head yesterday.”
Allan apologised for the incident and said she was considering her future in politics.
“Over recent weeks I’ve faced a number of personal difficulties. I took time off to address those, and believed I was okay to juggle those challenges with the pressure of being a minister,” she said in a statement.
“My actions yesterday show I wasn’t OK, and I’ve let myself and my colleagues down.”