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One of the candidates in the Mt Albert by-election is flabbergasted, following National MP Melissa Lee's comments at an election meeting last night.

The Transport Agency is proposing a combined surface/tunnel option for the Waterview motorway which will run through Mt Albert and cost $1.4 billion.

Greens co-leader Russel Norman says Ms Lee told the meeting that the road would be good, because it would stop criminals from South Auckland coming into the suburb to commit crimes. He says the comment was astounding.

"I guess it also shows why she's the kind of person that can support ramming a motorway through the poorest areas in Mt Albert because she clearly has prejudices against people and I think it was extremely sad."

Mr Norman says Ms Lee's remark was unacceptable in 21st century New Zealand and sparked jeering and booing from the audience.

He says such an attitude towards the people of South Auckland is straight out prejudice.

Ms Lee is currently being investigated by New Zealand On Air amid allegations her media company used public funding inappropriately before the last election.

- NEWSTALK ZB