Wall col­lapse: Hughes ab­so­lutely mum

Western Suburbs Weekly - - News - By JON BAS­SETT

MULTI-MIL­LION­AIRE car sales­man John Hughes will not dis­cuss al­le­ga­tions his cliff top home’s con­struc­tion col­lapsed a neigh­bour­ing re­tain­ing wall owned by the ill, el­derly mother of bar­ris­ter GiGi Viss­cher at pres­ti­gious Saun­ders Street, Mos­man Park.

“I don’t know why I would want to com­ment on that,” Mr Hughes said.

“I don’t want to get into a slang­ing match with Ms Viss­cher.”

On June 2, Mos­man Park Coun­cil gave Ms Viss­cher’s 76-year-old Alzheimer’s-suf­fer­ing mother 30 days to re­place the grey brick re­tain­ing wall.

Ms Viss­cher claims her mother’s gar­den ter­race and swimming pool were un­der­mined by work on Mr Hughes’ home dur­ing May 2012 that caused the wall’s col­lapse.

She claims Mr Hughes used a sub­se­quent WorkSafe or­der warn­ing work­ers about the dam­aged wall to sub­se­quently not do re­pairs, and the coun­cil did not ful­fil a re­quest to pros­e­cute Mr Hughes for al­legedly not ful­fill­ing his home’s build­ing per­mit.

When con­tacted, Mr Hughes said he would not an­swer the ac­cu­sa­tion about the WorkSafe or­der or dis­cuss neigh­bourly so­lu­tions be­cause the mat­ter was in le­gal dis­pute and could reach court.

Ms Viss­cher claims the coun­cil did not con­tact her or her mother about the June 2 build­ing or­der.

She said the Build­ing Act would have given her mother 14 days to con­sider be­fore­hand, and the coun­cil had given no ev­i­dence the wall was un­sta­ble be­fore May 2012.

“The build­ing or­der is­sued to my mother by the Town of Mos­man Park does not even pro­vide my mother with any op­por­tu­nity to pro­vide sub­mis­sions,” she said. “It sim­ply gives my mother 30 days to re­move a grey brick wall.”

How­ever, coun­cil staff emailed Ms Viss­cher on June 2 telling her that lawyers for Mr Hughes’ builder had ques­tioned the le­gal­ity of them be­ing or­dered to re­pair the wall, and coun­cil engi­neers would again as­sess the struc­ture.

Ms Viss­cher said she would now have to ob­tain an ad­min­is­tra­tion or­der to deal with her ill mother’s af­fairs.

Mos­man Park chief ex­ec­u­tive Kevin Poyn­ton said the coun­cil was seek­ing le­gal ad­vice about the mat­ter and it was not ap­pro­pri­ate to com­ment, other than en­cour­ag­ing Ms Viss­cher and Mr Hughes to take “rea­son­able” ef­forts for a so­lu­tion.

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