Pastor Les Wallen is fed up with Tauranga Council. In a video interview he told Local Focus, in his opinion, the council has intentionally created the traffic gridlock and roading chaos in the city.

The Greerton resident was inspired to run for mayor because of the sheer anger he feels about the Greerton roundabout.

"They shut down two perfectly good roundabouts, and created absolute traffic chaos," Wallen said. "For some reason I got extremely angry at that, at the stupidity of it, and watching businesses go broke."

"As a pastor, obviously I care about people, and watching people lose their livelihoods because of absolutely ridiculous decisions. I thought if I'm going to change this nonsense, I can only do it from the inside."


Before recently moving home to Tauranga, Wallen lived in Australia for 46 years, where he was an industrial automation specialist in the coal mines and steel factories.

He was also a pastor at the Baptist Church.

But tragedy struck Wallen when his wife Dell passed away three weeks ago, after being together for 55 years.

"My wife died from a brain melanoma, which grew and choked her to death," he said.

"And that's what I see in this city. There's a melanoma growing in this city and it's choking the roads and it's been done deliberately by the Department of Infrastructure in the council.

"Much of the congestion has been deliberately engineered to get you out of the car and into a bus."

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