National's Chester Borrows allegedly drives into protester
Video: Whanganui Chronicle
National MP Chester Borrows is to be questioned by police over claims he injured a protester with his car on Tuesday.
Mr Borrows, MP for Whanganui, was driving through the town with Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett when they were confronted by TPP protesters.
Video has emerged of Mr Borrows' car moving towards the protesters, slowing to a crawl, then speeding up again while a police officer encourages the protesters to back off.
A woman yells "ow" as the car drives away, and another of the protesters yells, "Someone get that on camera?"
After tweeting about the protest, another user accused him of running over her mother.
Protestor and victim Tracy Treadwell says she is feeling vulnerable and shaken by the incident.
"I was very very lucky the injuries weren’t more severe. I mean you can imagine the horror when I was taking off my shoe, I was horrified at what I was about to find.
"I was fortunate because the car ran over my foot as well as my knee, I was unbelievably fortunate that it was only soft tissue -- no fractures."
She says she couldn’t believe Mr Borrows at no point stopped his vehicle and insists there was no intention to form a blockade.
Mr Borrows has confirmed he was behind the wheel, but says he only moved forward once the protesters had been moved out of the way and wasn't aware of anyone getting hurt.
Mr Borrows said he had only become aware of the incident hours afterwards, prompting him to call police to check on the woman’s health.
"No I didn’t, didn’t know anything. But I saw the Facebook post when we were at another appointment later in the day.
"I’m pleased she hasn’t got any broken bones. The police told me she has been x-rayed and she hasn’t got any broken bones, so I’m very pleased about that."
Ms Bennett said today she was not aware of anyone getting hurt either.
"The police are currently investigating this matter and I will be making no further comment."
Police have confirmed one protester received a leg injury after being hit by a car, but would not confirm if Mr Borrows was the driver they planned to question.
"Police are currently establishing further information about this to assess what, if any further steps are required from a police perspective," a police spokesperson said. "This will include speaking to those with relevant information about what happened."
Ms Treadwell is pleased police are investigating. She says would like to see Mr Borrows charged and wants an apology from both Mr Borrows and Ms Bennett.