A government minister in Mexico who pulled strings to delay a flight she was about to miss has apologized and resigned. According to the government of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, environment minister Josefa Gonzalez Blanco asked an Aeromexico exec she knew to delay the flight from Mexico City to Mexicali on Friday, the Guardian reports. Passengers say the flight was delayed for 38 minutes after the pilot announced the aircraft had to return to the terminal "by presidential order" to pick up a late passenger. The minister resigned the next day amid a public outcry. "There was no presidential order to delay the departure of the plane," she admitted. "I am the only one responsible for what happened, the presidency never intervened."
Gonzalez Blanco said her behavior did not live up to the left-wing government's promise of "purifying" public life and governing for poor people. "There is no justification. The true transformation of Mexico requires total alignment with the values of equity and justice," the minister said in a statement, per Reuters. "Nobody should have privileges, and the benefits of one, even in carrying out one’s duties, cannot be above the well-being of the majority." The president said in a speech Saturday that Gonzalez Blanco had apologized and he had accepted her resignation. (Read more Mexico stories.)