The letter that was tabled in Parliament about how Shane Reti threatens Alex Wright – Andrew Blake #3

There’s been some controversy in Northland with people from a ‘dusty roads’ group (Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health & Safety Group) and National MPs involving emails and a recorded phone call between Alex Wright and Whangarei MP Shane Reti.

Andrew Blake wrote the emails, and has provided copies and comments.

No 3 is what Alex (and I ) wrote to Shane
Alex was absolutely stunned by the phone call by Reti who she has never met here though there was a previous email from his secretay a month or so back warning Alex off the bye election (and immediately a call by Reti to say forget that email….was never meant etc.)

It is  addressed that email to Shane  because I had already had a long correspondence with Mike Sabin that  literally made me ill …he was so evasive and clearly had no interest in his electors. And I thought that we were in for more of that from Shane Reti…but this time with ”threats”” What is incredibly sad is that one month back Alex made a speech to WDC at the Pipiwai Marae saying that “”we have Shane Reti on board with us””

Both Shane and Mike said they would help” in secret”” (Ask how often minutes are c kept of our meeting with Council.Never!)

The whole thing is about what people read…… not so much from the words …..but the context and ”body language”. The Overall opinion is that Shane tried to warn off a community group.

A much more interesting opinion of 100% of people I have talked to…… is that “”he was put up to it by National.””.  Such is the faith in this Government now.

Email #3

Date: Wed, 18 Mar 2015 12:04:45 +1300
Subject: The letter that was tabled in Parliament about how Shane Reti threatens Alex Wright?

The letter below  to Shane Reti  was tabled in Parliament today by Labours Phil Twyford Shadow Transport Secretary  after he had verified  Shane Reti MP threatening Alex  in which Shane Reti was objecting to a previous
letter “‘How Northland is Actively Neglected in Mike Sabins electorate”

In Parliament yesterday.

Hon PHIL TWYFORD : Has he (Simon Bridges) been advised that the Pipiwai Tītoki Advocacy for Community Health and Safety Group, which is campaigning to get more money spent sealing Northland roads, allegedly received a
threatening phone call from his colleague Shane Reti telling it to tone down its demands or it would not get what it wanted?

Hon SIMON BRIDGES : I am not aware of that. I am aware of the general project. It is one that I think does need looking at. Of course, if we did that, the other side would accuse us of pork-barrel politics. On this side of the House we have got strong voices inside Government who can make a difference on projects that matter to people in the north.

Hon PHIL TWYFORD : I seek leave of the House to table the email from the Pipiwai Tītoki Advocacy for Community Health and Safety Group—

Mr SPEAKER : Leave is sought—[Interruption] Order! I will put the leave. Leave is sought to table that particular email. Is there any objection? There is none. It can be tabled.

Document, by leave, laid on the Table of the House.

From Alex Wright to Shane Reti

“”Dr Shane Reti
National Party
Whangarei Electorate.

Dear Dr Reti

Thank you for taking the time to call me on Wednesday 11 March 2015. However, your phone call has left me worried and confused.

Firstly, Mr Andrew Blake writes his own emails on his behalf not for the Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health and Safety Group.

Mr Blake was extremely frustrated by his contacts with Mr Mike Sabin last year and before that with Mr Phil Heatley also.

Secondly, there is no one here, in the Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health and Safety Group, threatening anyone.

You made mention in your phone call to me that there is a threatening behaviour coming through from our Group.

The only threatening behaviour that we can tell is from what you said in the phone call, “ if we continue down the path we are taking then we will get nothing”.

If you talk to people in Northland you will hear repeated much of what Mr Blake says about how Northland is starved of our fair share of funds and how support in Parliament by our sitting Members of Parliament is lacking.

People here are puzzled as to why you, a Doctor and well known for your free clinic to the people of Pipiwai, have not given the support to what is now seen by the voters in this Electorate, the Media, Police and even the Councils as an effective campaign to alert New Zealand to a Health and now a Road Safety Hazard on our roads with the high density of log truck passes?

We have support from the Northland District Health Board and other agencies and we are now waiting for your support.

Please note that the number of passes used by Government as a standard was derived long before the World Health Organisation reports on Pm10 particles came out. The dust lingers in the air after the traffic has passed and is a proven carcinogen.

All this is accepted now and documented. Jan Wright of the Parliamentary Commission for the Environment can verify this.

As someone as yourself,  who knows these roads and the conditions that people live in here.

Do you support that Road Dust especially Pm10 as described in the World Health Organisation reports and Dr Jonathan Jarman’s report has the potential to become a Health and Safety risk for road side residents where there is a high density of log trucks passing over unsealed roads?

Please note that no one here has any interest in bridges. The National Northland Candidate, Mark Osbourne was laughed out of the Kaikohe RSA the other night on that one.

Our Communities sole interest is to have our Unhealthy and Unsafe Roads sealed.

You have given our Group no clear written assurances for our requests of help for our roading issues. Why is this and when can we expect to have something in writing from you?

It is almost like you have been stone walled by your own Party. At least in the interim our Group has had the honour of you taking the time to make two phone calls to speak with me regarding our Unsafe and Unhealthy roading issues.

May our Group remind you that, you were elected to represent the people who voted you in to make our Communities a safer and healthy place for living in.

The Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy Group has been given new information that your National Government will not offer any financial assistance to the Whangarei District Council to seal our Unsafe and Unhealthy unsealed roads.

Without any written information to the contrary from you it will mean without any doubt this new information is correct.

Dr Reti, can you please lend us your very much esteemed support to our campaign on, Road Dust being a Hazard to the  Health and Road Safety to Motorists and Roadsiders.

Your agreed support will follow and accompany documents to the Police, New Zealand Transport Agency and both the Whangarei District and Northland Regional Councils.

We ask for your support by reply to this email. Obviously and without threat, “No” will be the public understanding as the answer by default if you chose not to reply.

On behalf of the Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health and Safety Group we will anticipate your reply email by Wednesday 18 March 2015.

Thank you.
Yours sincerely,

Alex Wright.
Spokesperson for the Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health and
Safety Group

How Northland is Actively Neglected in Mike Sabins electorate – Andrew Blake email #2

There’s been some controversy in Northland with people from a ‘dusty roads’ group (Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health & Safety Group) and National MPs involving emails and a recorded phone call between Alex Wright and Whangarei MP Shane Reti.

Andrew Blake wrote the emails, and has provided copies and comments.

No 2 was the second one that Shane objected to and rants on about neglect in Northland and how it is “”organised neglect.”” .ie the Nat Govt trying to save money by ”shortchanging ” us on or roading needs. It is again not addressed to Shane specifically……. but to all Parliament etc

Email #2

Date: Wed, 11 Mar 2015 16:36:46 +1300

Subject: How Northland is Actively Neglected in Mike Sabins electorate.

Northlands MPs might seem to be  helping the  Goverment in Wellington shortchange Northland Electorates .?
Despite a vigorous  two year campaign,…….it has proved impossible to pin down either of
Northlands National MPs to commit to helping with   Roading, Health and Safety matters.?.

When asked to intercede with Councils for some  compliance with national directives on Health and Safety for instance, our Northland MPs insist they cannot ”interfere” with ”the working of Local Council”

By insisting that  they owe more loyalty to their Party than to the people who elected them…..(and despite being asked to do so several times)…….our Northland MPs choose NOT to question…. or protest in Parliament about:

1)How inadequate the Road Funding is that allocated to Northland by NZTA;

2)How Road User Charges are diverted to other regions such as Waikato by both Government and Business;

3) How our Councils WDC and NRC are in blatant breach of Environment Law and the Resource Consent Act in terms of the Air Pollution on our Unsealed Roads.

Requests to help with any of these matters gets some very devious answers. Both Northland MPs have used  ……the word ”secrecy” …ie they insist they can only help their voters ”in secret”..

Our MPs  also  seem loath to venture opinions on Northland in Wellington  ….except where it interacts with  ”Roads of National Importance”

Which is fine if you live near SH1 between Warkworth as far as the Bay of Islands but rather sad if you live on Dirt Roads, Narrow Rds, Unmaintained Rds …and until last week…..those places needing Wider Bridges

Despite being not allowed to interact with local Councils. Our MPs  DO turn up  in public alongside Government Ministers when our Council launches “Glamour projects” in Whangarei eg  such as the new and misfunctioning  swing bridge.

And  our MPs do meet informally with Council at  e.g the Mayoral Forum and elsewhere.
Is it in such ways that the Northland Councils get the message of what is expected of them by Govt.?
It seems to Northlanders that sometimes our  MPs behave more like Political Commissars than Representatives of the People?

And Now….
With one MP out of action…  the National Govt has  an even  better way of controlling democracy in our local Councils in Northland.

All you  need is for one of the Commissioners for the Kaipara to sit on Northland Regional Council meetings.

With a decision on the Northland Unitary Authority  looming … might seem that such a representative of the Commissioners for Kaipara is referred to (and deferred to?) in all matters ……and that such a person often has strong views on what is ALLOWED by Govt; eg on Roads and Air Pollution matters

“Dust and Unsealed Rds in Northland are a NO-GO as far as funding is concerned.”
(We get this information before the submissions process is complete)

Anyone who knows Northland does not need to be told how passionately most of our local Council members  and Whangarei businessmen get in behind our National MPS  and support  Central Goverment in any way that will save expense on infrastructure on RURAL NORTHLAND.

A perfect example is the way logging interests drive rough shod over all humanitarian concerns and seem to control the  vote in all Roading matters.

In  Northland it seems that up until now our Electoral Process has been just a plaything for the National Party.
Can we hope that a new MP will change things?

Northland road safety: Andrew Blake email #1

There’s been some controversy in Northland with people from a ‘dusty roads’ group (Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health & Safety Group) and National MPs involving emails and a recorded phone call between Alex Wright and Whangarei MP Shane Reti.

Andrew Blake wrote the emails, and has provided copies and comments.

No 1 the background is that Alex Wright was isolated and treated badly
in a meeting with WDC om Monday 11th when we were expecting Daron
Turner to show up. He is a spokesman for the Northern Transport Group.
I  wrote to him cc Parliament etc Quite  obviously angry and to get
publicity during the bye election. (This is Mike Sabins electorate)
about our roads.
Daron comes to see us with Insp Murray Hodson  this week. He is a good
guy I hear.

Email #1

Letter to Daron Turner,…TGLTD, and any parties interested in  Road Safety

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 2015 12:00:25 +1300
Subject: WDC Council, Business and Wannabe MPs show NO INTEREST in


Even a bye election…….  here where we live…… seems unable to
motivate WDC on ROAD SAFETY…..
Where is YOUR honour in this matter.
The attitude of Business in this looks just a SHAM of interest in
other peoples distress….While business goes on regardless.!

Apart from an intial contact with Insp. Murray Hodson …(which he
initiated.)….YOU have made no useful contact  or taken any part in
meaningful negotiations
with WDC about improving ROAD SAFETY and reducing the DUST
HAZARD…caused by log Trucks
Your truckies have not made any lasting attempts to go SLOWER and

At this moment…in still air….. there is a column of dust 200mts in
the air above Wrights farm.
And the School bus passes through this 4 times a day.
PLEASE  come and see it.

YOU could have made a difference at the meeting yesterday …….. but
PREDICTABLY you were not there.That is STANDARD behaviour for both
Council and Business in this.

If YOU cannot take some sort of responsible interest in the hazard
that the log trucks are causing…
……then WE will find a way of SLOWING the trucks ……….
…..and WE will ask PUBLICLY  that you DIVERT  from Wrights Rd….the
trucks that WE monitor as being the fastest and most inconsiderate of
road safety……
…….and WE will DIVERT  traffic  at SCHOOL BUS TIMES

Yours Andrew Blake for  PTRG

A lengthy email address list provided that looks like it includes all MPs from all parties plus many others including transport groups and media. Andrew says the list can be published but I don’t think it’s necessary.

Plunket with Alex Wright on Shane Reti and bullying

Sean Plunket interviewed dusty roads activist Alex Wright on RadioLive yesterday about her claims that Whangarei MP Shane Reti bullied her.


Up to 100 logging trucks a day use a network of unsealed roads in Northland. Pipiwai Titoki Advocacy for Community Health & Safety Group have have been campaigning for years to improve road funding in the region. Sean Plunket asked spokesperson Alex Wright, the woman who claims she was bullied by a National MP, who is doing the bullying?

I haven’t got time to transcribe it all but here are some key points followed by some transcription.

About fifty members in the group that has been campaigning for about four years.

The group has no rules or a membership list, in the process of making it an incorporated society. Very informal at this stage, they have meetings.

Advocate only on dusty roads.

Not a political group, a community group.

Wright has never been in a political party.

Advocating to get rid of dusty roads.

Been on TV 1 twice covering what they have to live with – Choking dust from trucks has Northland residents demanding help

No contact with Shane Reti before. He phoned her early February.

And then phone call made by Dr Reti Wednesday last week about emails sent out by Andrew Blake referring to the campaign. Nothing threatening in emails. Sent to all Parliament last Wednesday  how Northland is neglected in ‘Mike Sabin’s electorate’.

Group’s banners are red.

Then Wright got a phone call from Shane Reti talking about “threatening email, very wish washy.

Email was not signed – anonymous? No name at the bottom. Heading – from AD and CE Blake.

Reti made connection with group and Wright.

Blake is part of the group, Wright didn’t know Blake was sending email.

Dr Reti should have phoned Mr Blake.

Phone call totally unplanned, not forewarned. Out of the blue phone call from MP.

Reti said it was going to be more difficult to advocate if they campaign against National during the campaign.

Political reality.

He doesn’t threaten to do anything.

Plunket “I really can’t see where the huge threat is, it’s just politics isn’t it Alex?”.

Wright “Well, it’s everybody’s interpretation isn’t it.”

Plunket” Have you talked to Andrew Blake about his emails?”

Wright “No but I would be very keen for you to phone him”.

Plunket “Ok but you didn’t tell Shane Reti to phone Andrew Blake which would have been the natural thing to do.”

Wright “That’s right but as i said to you at the beginning the phone call took me quite by surprise, and I basically just listened.

Plunket “The problem is we don’t have the whole conversation do we.”

Wright “No and I only managed to start recording part way…”

Plunket “When was the last time you released, recorded and released to the media,  a phone conversation you had?”

Wright “I’ve never done it before in my life”.

Plunket “Who did you release the phone conversation to? How did you get it out there?”

Wright “How did i get it out there? Well in the modern day of technology you just, it’s so easy to  email recordings”.

Plunket “Who did you email it to?”

Wright “I emailed it to Radio New Zealand.”

Plunket “Because you knew a reporter there?”

Wright “We have quite a bit to do with the media”.

Plunket “Ok so you basically leaked a private conversation to the news media?”

Wright “Yes. Well I don’t know…”

Plunket “Well how do you feel about that, how do you feel about doing that, how do you think other people might look at that? That an MP rings you and gives you a heads up and says look it’s gonna be difficult for me to advocate for you if you keep stirring during the by-election, that’s just the way politics is. You record that conversation, and then you leak it to the news media. You just, and it’s a free country, you can do that .”

Wright “That’s right, it’s great isn’t it. It’s, I have rights, you realise that?”

Plunket: “Yeah I do, I do, I just wonder if you’re exercising in the best interests of your strategic objective to get rid of dusty roads, that’s all.”

Wright “I think we’re a lot closer now than we ever have been.”

Plunket “Really. So what are you going to do? I mean if you felt so bullied presumably you’re gonna quiver in fear and stop protesting your issue.”

Wright “No, not at all.”

Plunket “No I didn’t think so. So what are you planning, I know there was talk of blockading roads, are you going to do that?”

Wright “Um there’s all sorts of things up our sleeves at the moment, and I’m not going to disclose them of course.”

Plunket “Are you also disappointed that say New Zealand First hasn’t done much for your dusty roads in the last wee while either?”

Wright “Well I wouldn’t say New Zealand First hasn’t been um actually in the background. We’ve had Winston Peters at a marae meeting and he’s ah attended a Northland Regional Council meeting with our group, some of our group members. So actually…”

Plunket “Does your group have a preferred outcome for the by-election…”

Wright “Mr Peters is the only MP that has actually been and met with us. We invited Mike Sabin to try and um…”

Plunket “Yeah. Well he’s not standing in the by-election is he?”

Wright “Who? Who’s that?”

Plunket “Mike Sabin’s not standing in the by-election is he.”

Wright “I don’t know.”


Plunket “All right Alex, do you have a preferred outcome for the by-election? How are you voting?”

Wright “How am I voting. Well I’ll just say I’m not voting for National. And I’m a straight up person sean.”

Plunket “Yep”.

Wright “I’m down to earth, I’m straight up, and I have nothing to hide. I don’t work in secrecy. I try to email everything that I can because there’s a paper trail. A lot of our politicians choose not to do that.”

Plunket “Ok. Could you email me the emails from Andrew Blake so we can all take a look at them and decide for ourselves whether or not we thought they were threatening?”

Wright “Now, um, I, I better just check with ah Mr Blake that he…”

Plunket “Why? You’re happy to release Mr Reti’s, the recording, the phone conversation with Mr Reti without asking…”

Wright “Oh yeah no problem at all. So so what…”

[email address exchange]

Pluinket “You don’t seem someone who’s too traumatised by being bullied”.

Wright “Not at all. You should ask some of my long time friends. They would know what I used to get up to.”