Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The problem with Christchurch

Writing in The Press, Will Harvie puts his finger on the problem with Christchurch:

Voting rights of Cantabrians have been trampled in recent years.

In 2010, the elected leaders of Environment Canterbury were overthrown by Parliament.

In 2011, the elected leaders of Christchurch City Council lost control of our central business district, first to satan [sic], then to Civil Defence and now to the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority.

Something has to control the rebuilding of Christchurch, but that doesn't mean Cantabrians must quietly accept decisions made by these temporary masters.

And that's it in a nutshell: the people of Christchurch want a say in the future of their city. And that is being denied to them, both by CERA and by an increasingly authoritarian Mayor and council CEO (AKA the "Bob and Tony show"). The answer, as always, is more democracy: a mayor that listens, a council that responds, a CERA which serves the people of Christchurch, rather than politicians in Wellington. And if they don't get that, people will - and should - protest until they do.