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Restore Passenger Rail supporters say: ‘I’m Phil Mauger; I like throwing your money around’

Supporters of Restore Passenger Rail gathered at the Christchurch City Council chambers this at 9:30 this morning, Wednesday, January 24, to voice their concerns over the mayor’s wasteful ambition to host the Commonwealth Games in Ōtautahi Christchurch.

“This is a time of crisis. Ōtautahi, and Aotearoa as a whole, are increasingly assailed by extreme weather events every year, and we just don’t have time or money to waste on environmentally destructive pipe dreams like the Commonwealth Games any more,” said spokesperson Aurora Garner-Randolph (she/her).

During Wednesday’s Council meeting, a Restore Passenger Rail supporter wearing Mauger’s face prophetically proclaimed that “I’m Phil Mauger; I like throwing your money around!”. Like the supporter, who threw bundles of fake money around the chamber to symbolise the recklessness of wasting public resources on considering a Commonwealth Games bid, mayor Phil Mauger proposed that Christchurch City Council takes those first steps towards a bid for the 2030 Commonwealth Games, which the Council passed 10-7.

“It is a waste of time and ratepayer money even to investigate the possibility of hosting the Commonwealth Games, which bankrupted Birmingham and saddled it with 14 million kilograms of CO2 emissions just from athletes alone. Ōtautahi has zero chance of pulling off the Commonwealth Games; Mayor Mauger’s Commonwealth chaos is just more climate chaos. Our public time and money should be spent on real solutions like mass rapid transit, passenger rail, and cycleways – before another climate disaster like the 2021 Canterbury floods. We’re committed to making sure those real solutions get implemented, and we’re determined to prevent any more resources being wasted on the Commonwealth Games,” said Garner-Randolph.


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