Ill health knocks out Ham West candidate
The Green Party's Hamilton West candidate has pulled out of the election race due to ill health.
Jennifer Lawless, 28, was announced as the area's candidate in December.
Lawless had previously worked for Green MP Kevin Hague in Wellington and was keen to represent Hamilton's increasingly "diverse face".
But the former Hamilton Girls' High School student issued a statement saying that it was with "much regret that I'm letting you know I'm pulling out as a Green Party candidate for this year's election.
"I have recently found it more difficult than I anticipated to fulfil all my commitments without this having an impact on my health. The party deserves to have candidates that can fully and freely put themselves 100 per cent into the campaign for a fairer, smarter greener government in 2014 and I have unfortunately found myself unable to do that right now. I want to thank the many people who have personally given me their support; I am very grateful for your time, enthusiasm and advice.
"I understand that people will be disappointed, and I wish it were otherwise, but am confident that I'm making the right decision for both myself and the party at this point in my life.
"I have thoroughly enjoyed promoting Green policy and a Green platform for a better New Zealand and will continue to do so however I can," Lawless said. "I wish all the Green teams and candidates the very best of luck in their hard work to create a green government in 2014."