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“Pike River is a crime-scene” –Bernie Monk

Posted by te2ataria on December 12, 2016

Sent by a reader

Owner of Pike River mine’s access road gifts victims’ families legal control of the road

Colin Van der Geest, owner of Logburn Farm, where the mine’s access road is located, said he was “happy” for the families of the 29 men who were killed in the 2010 explosion to stage protests on his land until “the best possible conclusion has been reached,” according to a statement published by Newshub.

Good on ya, bro!

Victims’ families will now be able to set up a road block to Prevent Solid Energy’s attempts to seal the Pike River mine.

Pike River families’ spokesman Bernie Monk, who lost his son Michael in the disaster, said protestors would physically block the road tomorrow morning, preventing cement trucks from accessing the mine and sealing its entrance.

Van der Geest wrote in his letter his family had “deep sympathy” what the Pike River families had been going through and “respect your right to take this action”.

“We’ll be blockading it. If anyone passes that without our permission, we’ll be serving trespass notices on them,” he told Newshub.

Monk said the Department of Conservation would be granted access, as would anyone completing safety work.

“We’ll be in Wellington on Tuesday to take our new expert plan for re-entry to Bill English. He has the chance to do what his predecessor [John Key] wouldn’t and call off the sealing of the mine.

“Pike River is a crime-scene and we want to get into the drift to recover our loved ones’ remains and the evidence that might be down there.

“We’ve got a plan to do it and we’re not going to let the opportunity to get answers get buried under hundreds of tons of concrete,” Monk said.

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