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Dublin: 8 °C Monday 17 February, 2020

Kiwi building boss accused of 'racial profiling' for linking Irish workers to shoddy earthquake repairs

Blaming poor work on contractors, he said some may have “gone back to Ireland”.

Image: Alastair Grant

THE CEO OF a building firm in New Zealand has been accused of “racial profiling” after he appeared to single out Irish workers for shoddy work on earthquake repairs.

Construction firm Fletcher has been working on earthquake damaged homes in the Canterbury region. It’s been found that some of the foundation work does not meet building standards.

Fletcher says that much of the work was carried out by contractors but, addressing the issue on Television New Zealand, Fletcher CEO Graham Darlow appeared to point the finger of blame at Irish workers:

There may be a few that we can’t find the contractor, maybe there’s a few who’ve gone out of business, maybe they’re gone back to Ireland. For those, Fletcher will be fronting for the cost of that repair.

Details of the sub-standard work was revealed by New Zealand’s Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment who described most of the shortcomings as “relatively minor and easy to fix”.

Fletcher says that they are to recheck the repair work of 5,700 homes out of the 69,000 homes involved of the repair programme. They estimate that 1,200 will need to be repaired and have assured customers that they will cover the cost.

In a statement, Darlow said that the company is working with working with contractors to ensure repair works are made but the names of the contractors invloved were not released.

His comments linking shoddy work with Ireland has, however, led to a backlash among Irish people in New Zealand.

The Irish People in New Zealand Facebook page has also been full of complaints about Darlow’s comments on the national broadcaster.

PastedImage-17432 Source: Facebook

PastedImage-36276 Source: Facebook

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Rónán Duffy

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