May 31, 2021
Whakatane rage at Worksafe prosecution
A Ngāti Awa kaumatua says this weeks’ hearing on Worksafe’s prosecution over the Whakaari White Island eruption has angered the Whakatāne community.
The administrative hearing at Whakatāne District Court on Thursday and Friday will consider the next steps in the prosecution of several firms and individuals, including Ngāti Awa-owned White Island Tours and the helicopter tour companies which helped rescue people after the eruption in December 2019.
Maanu Paul says people who risked their lives are now being dragged through the court.
"The bureaucrats have to got to get it right. They have no empathy. They don't care about the humanity of the community where this tragic event took place or pf the people who did their best to rescue people, put their lives at risk, and this is what they are being paid back with," he says.
Maanu Paul says if anyone needs to be charged it’s Worksafe for not making sure the right safety protocols were in police for businesses based on tours to an active volcano.
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