Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Prime Minister Key to account for civil defence failure

22 February, 2013

Prime Minister Key to account for civil defence failure

The New Zealand Prime Minister owes a personal debt to those left unprotected and who died in the Canterbury earthquakes, a former regional councillor claims. Rik Tindall was the last community representative for Civil Defence and Emergency Management (CDEM) at Environment Canterbury (ECan), before PM Key's move to accelerate commercial irrigation in the region displaced the elected, accountable council.

Mismanagement of CDEM, under Key's tasked ECan commission, left an organisational deficit after the 4 September 2010 quake that turned catastrophic come 22 February 2011, Tindall believes. “Key's culpability for deficient emergency response is very strong.”

Dismantling of the regional council and its CDEM capacity contributed to the scale of the tragedy, Tindall explains. “Event analysis, fair warning and preparation were stifled, to maintain business-as-usual in commercial Christchurch at the expense of public safety. As with the wreckage of ECan, Mayor Parker shared credit for civil defence disaster with the Prime Minister, but now adding promotional camera angles,” he says.

“A national emergency was called by Key after the 22 February quake, in an attempt to cover for the lost regional capacity to respond to a regional crisis. But the sudden, off-focus, ad hoc arrangements could not work so well as years of preparation might have indicated,” Tindall explains. “For example, the absence of the NZ Defence Force (NZDF) – apart from medics – from the CTV building rescue doomed it to failure; that was a connection expected through ECan CDEM, that never eventuated. City CDEM was under-resourced for what wasn't their job, creating foolhardy confusion and lost opportunity to save lives.”

Tindall sees the blame being shifted onto NZ Fire Service (NZFS) administration and its Urban Search and Rescue wing as passing the buck appallingly. “Late 2012's Canterbury Television inquest had that objectionable flavour, with NZFS in Wellington irrelevantly brought under scrutiny and NZDF notable for their absence as participant witnesses,” Tindall points out. “City CDEM had little functionality, in the event.”

“Let us remember the 185 lives lost in Christchurch, and respect them by bringing justice over their official abandonment,” Tindall says.

“With John Key’s personal fortune reported at fifty million dollars, he can afford to compensate the families of those whose lives his CDEM incompetence and hubris wasted, to the tune of $270,270.27 each. This he should immediately announce and pay, at this anniversary,” Tindall recommends.

“The take-home, 22 February 2013, Christchurch message for John Key is: 'Gamble with peoples' well-being, as you have so casually in Canterbury, and you lose; big time.'”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Team Behind Trump's Throne

Forget the Putin factor. Daily, the team of charlatans, bigots and stunningly ignorant crackpots that Trump is appointing to head key federal agencies is just as alarming. These are positions with vast power and budgetary discretion over policies that stand to affect tens of millions of vulnerable Americans. Sad! More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On Bill English, Abroad

If David Cameron was the closest thing John Key had to a political mentor, their successors also share a whole lot in common. Theresa May and Bill English were both propelled into the top jobs as the result of unexpected resignations, and without much in the way of credible competition from their colleagues... More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Labour Bill To Override Safety Act For Mine Entry

“Bill English has been hiding behind the legal excuse that any attempt to re-enter the mine to recover the bodies might place the mine’s owner, Solid Energy Limited, and its directors in breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Populism And Labour 2017

For many people on the centre-left, populism is a dirty word, and a shorthand for the politics of bigotry. In this country, it has tended to be equated with the angry legions of New Zealand First. Who knew they were not just a reactionary spasm, but the wave of the future? More>>

Oxfam: 30% Of NZ Owns Less Wealth Than Our Two Richest Men

The research also reveals that the richest one per cent have 20 per cent of the wealth in New Zealand, while 90 per cent of the population owns less than half of the nation’s wealth. The research forms part of a global report released to coincide with this week’s annual meeting of political and business leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. More>>

ALSO:

Hospitals: Resident Doctors Set To Strike Again

Despite discussions between the DHBs and NZRDA over safer hours for resident doctors progressing during the last week, the strike planned for next week appears set to proceed. More>>

ALSO:

Not So Super Fund: More Burning Ethical Questions For Steven Joyce

Greens: Radio New Zealand reported this morning that the New Zealand Superfund has $77 million invested in 47 coal companies that the Norwegian Government’s Pension Fund – the largest sovereign fund in the world – has blacklisted. More>>

Activism: Greenpeace Intercepts World’s Biggest Seismic Oil Ship

Greenpeace crew have made contact with the world’s biggest seismic oil ship after travelling 50 nautical miles on two rigid-hulled inflatables off the coast of Wairarapa... Greenpeace radioed the master of the Amazon Warrior to deliver an open letter of protest signed by over 60,000 New Zealanders. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: Why Tax Cuts In 2017 Would Be A (Proven) Bad Idea

Ever since the world fell prey to the mullahs of the free market in the 1980s, no amount of real world evidence has managed dispel one key tenet of their economic faith. Namely, the idea that if you cut income taxes and taxes on small business, a wave of individual enterprise and entrepreneurial energy will thus be unleashed, profits will rise and – hey bingo! – the tax cuts will soon be paying for themselves ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news