In a hard-hitting speech in Brooklands today, Labour MP for Christchurch East Lianne Dalziel, called on the Prime Minister to stand by residents who look set to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars as a result of the bungled red zone settlement process.
“In 2010 John Key stood outside the Brooklands Community Centre and promised to stand by residents. Yet now they are left hundreds of thousands of dollars out of pocket as a result of shonky offers on their properties.
“Today I have released the letter, sent last week, which calls on John Key to intervene in the red zone process, and relieve residents of months of stress,” Lianne Dalziel said.
“John Key’s ‘chopper in, chopper out’ approach to the Christchurch recovery has seen him become just a ‘fair weather friend’ in the eyes of many residents.
“John Key has left all the difficult decisions to his Minister of Canterbury Earthquake Recovery, who refuses to engage and leaves residents confused, frustrated and unable to move on with their lives. A predicament which runs contrary to National’s red zone slogan which says the government offer will ‘enable people to move on’.
“Now the government itself is entangled in a conflict of interest, which I make plain in my letter to the Prime Minister.
“It is important to note that the government pockets any extra money they get back from either source (the insurer or EQC) over and above the rated valuation of a residents property. Most people don’t know this, including CERA officials. But what it means is that the government could end up better off than the people they say they are helping.
“Today, with the support of local residents, I am calling on John Key to advocate for the interests of the people, not the interests of insurers,” Lianne Dalziel said.