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Lemon Crawls Across Cook Strait, What’s up Gerry?

Lemon Crawls Across Cook Strait, What’s up Gerry?

Minister of Transport Gerry Brownlee has let the Interislander ferry debacle go on long enough, he’s got to stop KiwiRail burning taxpayers’ dollars, says New Zealand First.

“It’s time for a full ministerial inquiry, including into his own ‘inertia’, says New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters.

“The Aratere is a lemon as we have said all along, yet KiwiRail keeps pouring money at it.

“What is the point, they should cut their losses, buy a decent new ship and make the Aratere history.

“The Minister does not seem to be aware that the bill for repairing the Aratere is mounting. The ship is not reliable enough to be servicing the important sea link for freight and passengers between the North and South Islands.

“The ship coughed and wheezed its way to New Zealand when it was bought, and has been spluttering ever since. Even after major surgery in Singapore it is still sick.

“As New Zealand First asked when it left for Singapore, will it be fixed?

“KiwiRail needs skilled operators at the helm. The Minister must see to that.

“He has been missing whenever the Aratere breaks down. If he does not step up now we can only guess that the National Government is setting KiwiRail up to fail, to flog it off to private enterprise.

“That will mean another strategic state asset gone,” says Mr Peters.


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