Tuesday, December 5, 2017


A just released ministerial briefing paper has made it very clear that the Chief Executive of the Pike River Recovery Agency would be held responsible for anything that went wrong during the recovery operation.    This despite the announcement by Minister Little that the Chief Executive would answer to him and that he (Little) would have the final say.    So, Little gives the order and the CEO takes the can.

Talk about leading from the rear.     Others less charitable then I might even label it craven cowardice.     Have to ask whether this will have people lining up for the CEO job ... and we won't even mention Winston Peters' promise to lead the recovery operation in person.    Anything for a vote perhaps.   Figures.


pdm said...

It seems tome that this will be in breach of both Human Rights and Employments laws.

Anonymous said...

The CEO is an experienced miner, Little is an experienced politician who would be acting under advise. The CEO would have given advise that had been taken from other miners. If you advise me to open the mine and it turns to shit you will carry the can.

Smart man is Mr Little.

Lord Egbut

Seabird said...

Little, Adern and Peters said they would open the mine, and now have reneged on this promise and are making some other sucker pay if it all goes wrong, but I bet they will take the kudos if it goes right.

The Veteran said...

Egbut ... have 'they' named the CEO? news to me.

Anonymous said...

Pretty well explains a difficult decision..... https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/99520850/pike-river-recovery-agency-chief-executive-liable-if-reentry-goes-wrong-not-andrew-little

Lord Egbut who is frightened of the dark

Psycho Milt said...

Apparently, you can make this shit up. I presume it was DPF.

From Stuff:

"In putting together this project, I was acutely aware the previous government had handled the families involved in this matter in a completely shabby and poor way."

Little said he wanted to make sure the agency, and other arrangements relating to the re-entry, allowed for full accountability to the Government, as well as making sure officials engaged with families and everyone involved complied with health and safety laws.

He also reiterated that anybody involved in a task had duties under health and safety law, and no employee could be instructed to undertake unsafe work.

So, yeah, the person running the operation is accountable for it, no Little doesn't get to "order" them to do anything unsafe, and unlike the previous government he isn't going to "handle the families involved in this matter in a completely shabby and poor way."

Johno said...

Milt, are you missing the point intentionally or were you simply unable to grasp it? It's nothing to do with employees going in. It's about management directing the re-entry.

Here it is again: If someone goes into the mine and there is an accident, then criminal liability falls upon the managers. Not Andrew Little, who has *zero* liability.

The fact that no worker would be compelled to go into the mine is irrelevant in this context.

The bottom line is that no Pike River manager will instruct anyone to go in. They will simply either refuse to allow the operation to go ahead or they will resign if they feel pressured by the minister.

The whole saga is just a disgusting political play by Labour and Winston, effectively exploiting tragedy for political gain.

The Veteran said...

Milt ... Little's/your assertion that the previous government handled the families in a shabby and poor way is crap. The previous government accepted the professional advice tendered to it that the mine was unsafe to enter. They had no option. The Pike River families disagreed with that and commissioned their own report which said entry was possible ... quelle suprise ... they were hardly a disinterested party.

That report was picked up by Labour and NZF who played the families like a fiddle for short term political game. Talk about shabby and poor. That cynical ploy takes the biscuit.

But once in power Labour changed the goalposts. Minister Little now sez the recovery operation will go ahead ONLY if the mine is safe to enter ... which was the previous governments stance. But if re-entry is approved (and Little has been delegated sign-off on that) and things turn to custard the Truman dictum of 'the buck stops here' doesn't apply. It's not Little that's in the gun ... it's the CEO. Little's get out of jail card ... 'the advice tendered to me was that entry should go ahead and I accepted that advice'. No matter that previous advice had it that the risks were too great.

Clearly Little ain't no Truman.

Just how you factor the political/family pressure in any recommendation to re-enter the mine and that's for the CEO to sort out. Don't envy him/her.

Paulus said...

I assumed that the new CEO was to be Bernie Monk.

Psycho Milt said...

Little now sez the recovery operation will go ahead ONLY if the mine is safe to enter ... which was the previous governments stance.

I think the family members who had to block the access road to prevent Nick Smith having the mine sealed up would strongly question the accuracy of that claim.

The Veteran said...

PM ... the previous government were going to have the mine sealed because of the official advice that it wasn't safe to re-enter the mine ... Labour/NZF aligned themselves with the Pike River families in questioning that advice but in doing so they were playing politics pure and simple.

Going to be interesting if, at the end of all this, there is no change to the official advice.

Psycho Milt said...

They were going to have the mine sealed because of strongly-disputed official advice that it wasn't safe to re-enter the mine. That is not a policy of "recovery operation will go ahead if the mine is safe to enter." Even the company they hired to fill it with concrete refused to go ahead with the job. That's the same as Labour's stance like Trump's policy on immigration is the same as Obama's.

The Veteran said...

PM ... argue the toss as much as you like. The truth is that the previous government were prepared to authorise re-entry provided it was safe to do so ... ask yourself this question ... why wouldn't they? They proposed sealing the mine because of the advice tendered to them. That was right and proper ... it was/is a grave site.

'Your' strongly disputed official advice consists of a report commissioned by the families who were/are hardly a disinterested party.

I repeat ... Going to be interesting if, at the end of all this, there is no change to the official advice.

Johno said...

Labour just spoke the words the Pike River families and hand wringers wanted to hear. Now they're softening them up for disappointment. They were never actually interested in going in and getting remains. They just wanted to score cheap political points.

Anonymous said...

Johno.. the nice thing about opinions is that they are opinions, even though they have no factual base. Please don't let this stop you posting as it is always amusing to see how the other half thinks.

Lord Egbut

B Whitehead said...

Time will tell in the end, personally I think this will go on for years with no actual result or conclusion.

Johno said...

Egbut, your post applies to you too.