Mosque shooting victim feels let down by ministers

Yama Nabi. - Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

A witness of the Christchurch mosque shootings says he feels let down by ministers for not allowing ACC to help mentally traumatised victims.

Cabinet papers released today, show ministers went against official advice by not extending ACC cover for people mentally affected by the March attack.

In the Cabinet papers on 15 April, The Ministry of Social Development said the welfare system is not feasible to support the mentally traumatised.

The papers also showed Government officials recommended that ACC was better placed to cover mentally affected people.

However, Cabinet opted to ignore the advice and send victims to the ministry anyway.

Yama Nabi, who lost his father at Masjid Al -Noor, said the cabinet papers show ministers lacked compassion.

Mr Nabi arrived at the mosque moments after the shooting to find dead bodies, wounded children and a river of blood.

He said he is not looking for a handout, but understanding and compassion for the mentally affected.

Mr Nabi called on ministers to have a heart, and consider what the victims have had to go through since the attack.

"If you go to [Ministry of] Social Development and Work and Income, they will just turn around and say when are you starting back at work?" Mr Nabi said.

"Open your heart. That's the only thing I want to tell them [ministers]. I don't want to have a year off or anything like that. I just want time off with my family and with my mum," he said.

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