ON YOUR BIKE!

We all got sick of Bob Parker and his yellow safety jacket - now we're all sick of Roger Sutton and his bicycle.

In the second instalment of its 'You're Unelected 'Leaders' Are People Too' series, The Press this week has turned the gentle spotlight on Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority   boss Roger Sutton.

Readers of The Press may recall  that a fortnight ago the newspaper ran a 'heartwarming'  story about the youthful days of Earthquake Recovery minister Gerry Brownlee. This was a story about his 'talent quest past' and how he could apparently sing 'like Placido Domingo'. Strangely, despite the claim that could sing like the great Domingo, Gerry became a woodwork teacher.

But now its the turn  of Brownlee's right hand man, Roger Sutton, for a nice fluffy story.

This inconsequential story  was  supposedly  all about how Roger's enthusiasm for cycling earned him his  own spot at the at the Christchurch International Airport bike stand.

But the whole thing was a media beat-up, er, I mean practical joke.

Christchurch International Airport Ltd spokeswoman Yvonne Densem said the reserved  sign was a practical joke and was initially set up as a photo to send to Sutton.

Said Sutton: 'Like many people working in the recovery, I have a very demanding job and I need to have a laugh every now and then to stop me going mad. I think it's important for everyone in the Christchurch area to be able to have a laugh,''

Yes, we're all laughing it up out in the eastern suburbs, Roger. Did you hear the one about the couple living in a garage?  Or the one about red zone residents being offered by you Roger - yes, you - less than half the real value of their land? That's a real rib tickler.

As one person commented on The Press website  'Roger is holding a gun to my head to sell my land for f**k all  and he gets his own bike stand.'

This story, like the Brownlee story,  was a none too subtle  attempt to raise Sutton's sagging  public profile. Roger is just one of us, folks!

But this is the man who scuttled the Christchurch City Council's draft city plan (which thousands of Christchurch people contributed ideas to)   and foisted a corporate-conceived plan on the good people of Christchurch. This is a plan that the people of Christchurch have had  no input into and have never agreed to.

Perhaps Roger should be given his own personal bike stand outside the offices of Ngai Tahu Properly where Roger receives the 'benefit' of its wisdom about what is or isn't appropriate for Christchurch.

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