Kokiri Cres house ‘needs to come down’

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - VIR­GINIA FAL­LON

Kokiri Cres res­i­dents want the house where Pita Tekira died de­mol­ished be­fore it’s burned down.

The house, at 26a Kokiri Cres, where Tekira shot and killed po­lice dog Gazza, was de­stroyed on May 2 in a fire the po­lice are treat­ing as sus­pi­cious.

Now, Kokiri Cres res­i­dents say it’s only a mat­ter of time be­fore the house at 13b Kokiri Cres, where Tekira died, goes up in flames.

Liz Makalio from Welles­ley Com­mu­nity Ac­tion Group, said res­i­dents were tak­ing turns to watch the house at night.

‘‘The res­i­dents feel they’re just wait­ing for the house to burn.

‘‘The house needs to come down.

‘‘Why should these peo­ple be wait­ing?’’

Makalio or­gan­ised a meet­ing for res­i­dents last week and said it was clear what peo­ple were ask­ing for.

‘‘They want the house down and then they want to be left alone.’’

Chrissy Leg­gott, who lives in Kokiri Cres, said the house needed to be de­mol­ished so peo­ple could move on with their lives.

‘‘Un­til it’s gone there will be no rest,’’ she said. ‘‘The res­i­dents are pet­ri­fied.’’

Leg­gott said the house was in dan­ger of be­com­ing a shrine to the man who died there.

‘‘He was laid to rest, now it’s time to do the same to the house.’’

The house is owned by Hous­ing New Zealand and is va­cant.

Kathy Fur­fie, Hous­ing New Zealand’s area man­ager, said the or­gan­i­sa­tion was work­ing with the po­lice.

She said there was an in­creased po­lice pres­ence in Kokiri Cres and the po­lice were do­ing reg­u­lar pa­trols.

Fur­fie said the house at 13b Kokiri Cres was be­ing tested for con­tam­i­na­tion.

‘‘We will use the re­sults and the views of com­mu­nity when we con­sider the future of the prop­erty,’’ she said.

Kris Faafoi, Mana MP, said agen­cies needed to get around the peo­ple who live in Kokiri Cres.

‘‘They se­ri­ously fear for their safety,’’ he said. ‘‘I un­der­stand there are kids who are trau­ma­tised and peo­ple are frag­ile.’’

Faafoi said he was aware peo­ple vis­it­ing the street to take pho­tos.

‘‘Peo­ple need to act with com­pas­sion. This isn’t the place to take self­ies.’’

PHOTO: FAIRFAX

The house at 26a Kokiri Cres, which was de­stroyed by fire.

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