Open Letter to PM Jacinda Ardern

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern holds a box of Whittakers Chocolate bars, with West Coat MP Damien O’Connor (centre) and meets Civil Defence Controller Roger Ball (right) during a visit to the Civil Defence control centre in Richmond. Credit: Martin De Ruyter/ Stuff

Dear Prime Minister,

I have watched, over the last five days, the amazing efforts of ordinary everyday Kiwis in tackling the terrible fires that have struck the Tasman region. People’s generosity, kindness, and efforts have been second to none.

Cooking meals, picking up donated goods, shifting livestock, helping displaced families move from point A to point B. I have seen a side of humanity that I thought had gone forever and it’s given me hope in the sense that regardless of the evil in the world, good seems to still be winning.

NZ Herald Rural firefighters Deon McKay, left, and Luca Ropper manning a pump on the fringes

Prime Minister, what is so damn frustrating about seeing all this great work being done by volunteers, is the complete lack of input I have seen from your government. You absolutely tax the daylights out of us to a point where young people, in particular, cannot even live in a house by themselves let alone aspire to own a property. You bleed the people of this country dry then, when a natural disaster strikes, you happily sit back and watch thousands of people give their time and money, literally ten of thousands of dollars, to help the victims that YOU, the New Zealand Government should be assisting.

Prime Minister, the figure being talked about of $20,000 that the Government has put forward is nothing short of an insult to your fellow New Zealanders. Look closely at the amount you send overseas to victims of a natural disaster.

Prime Minister, wake up, get off your backside, get down to the Tasman region, send aid, send what the people need; for God only knows how much taxation income your government recieves just from this region.

Stand up, do something, instead of being a spectator and allowing these good people to fight this battle alone.