Stuart Nash admits he 'stuffed up', wants to keep other portfolios despite calls for him to be ousted from Cabinet

Stuart Nash, who resigned as police minister in a matter of hours on Wednesday, admits he "completely stuffed up" but plans to keep working on his other portfolios.

Nash joined Prime Minister Chris Hipkins on a trip to Gisborne to announce government funding for a coastal shipping route between the city and Napier, to support the regions in the wake of Cyclone Gabrielle.

After landing, he told RNZ he had got it wrong when he boasted on Wednesday about phoning the police commissioner to discuss whether a case he disagreed with the judge on would be appealed.

"Absolutely, I completely stuffed up, and you know what - if I was the Prime Minister I would have done exactly the same thing as our one did," Nash said.

"I own it, made a mistake, and onwards and upwards."

Hipkins has said Nash's removal from the police portfolio was proportional to the offence, but opposition parties and commentators have called for his removal from Cabinet entirely, his other portfolios stripped.

Nash said he planned to continue in his other roles.

"Nah, I've got a hell of a lot of work to do. I'm very, very engaged with what I need to get done in the Bay and I'm loving Forestry, Economic Development and Fisheries," he said.

"I've got a lot of work to do across my portfolios and a lot of work to do in my home region of Hawke's Bay and my electorate and I'm really keen to make sure that we get it right there, so I'll be working incredibly hard to make sure we get it right for the people of Hawke's Bay."

He said he had learned from his mistake.

"If I make the same mistake again, the prime minsiter will have to take further action - but we learn from our errors."

Nash was not police minister at the time of his conversation with the commissioner, but the government is expected to remain independent from judicial and police prosecutorial decisions.

He initially refused to back down on his comments about the judicial decision and said the conversation with the commissioner was just him "chewing the fat" with a "mate".

However, by the time Parliament began sitting at 2pm on Wednesday, Hipkins had announced Nash's resignation.