Two council hopefuls making a stand over Havelock North water debacle

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Standing for a seat with Hastings District Council Damon Harvey (left) and Bayden Barber are organising a Walk for Water on Saturday, from the Havelock North fountain to the fountain in the Hastings CBD. Photo / Duncan Brown
Standing for a seat with Hastings District Council Damon Harvey (left) and Bayden Barber are organising a Walk for Water on Saturday, from the Havelock North fountain to the fountain in the Hastings CBD. Photo / Duncan Brown

Two men vying for a seat on Hastings District Council are determined to show authorities "enough is enough" with a march following the latest Havelock North water debacle.

"Let's get clean safe water flowing again," is the organisers, Bayden Barber and Damon Harvey's, message underpinning the Walk for Water community rally set for Saturday morning.

The duo are inviting all of Hawke's Bay to join and show their support for the thousands who were hit by a severe gastro bug after Havelock North's water was contaminated last month.

The Walk for Water will leave from Havelock North's water fountain at 8.30am and will go down Havelock Rd and Heretaunga St to the water fountain in the Hastings city centre.

They said the walk was a way for people to come together and show authorities "enough is enough," leading the way and showing that although Havelock North had suffered the community was "stronger together".

They added that people who had been sick were on the road to recovery but the water still wasn't.

"Together we can send a strong message that the water we drink, swim in and use to grow food needs to be clean and pure again," Mr Barber said.

"We need to work together and rebuild our region's reputation and protect our water now and for our future generations," Mr Harvey said.

There has so far been a focus on Havelock North, but Hastings businesses and homes had been impacted, too, after being given chlorinated water.

"Many say this is a one-off incident, but we need to make sure that this never happens again and that we can drink from our taps in full confidence that it's fresh, clean, un-chlorinated water," Mr Harvey said.

Ngā Marae o Heretaunga and Ngati Kahungunu Iwi are endorsing the walk.

Both men urge school sport teams to get involved with winter sport competitions taking a huge hit with cancellations during the crisis.

"Wear your team uniforms and finish the season on a positive note," they said.

A traffic management plan will be put in place and there will be pure water stations.

There will be free transport back to Havelock North after the walk.

- People are asked to gather at 8am at the Havelock North water fountain. The 4.5km walk begins at 8.30am.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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