LISTEN: Residents in one of the most expensive neighbourhoods in New Zealand are concerned about a homeless man living in a cave.
64-year-old Awhi has been living in a cave located on Mount Drury Reserve in Mount Maunganui since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic last year and says it's the only shelter he can find and there is no housing available for him.
The cave he is living in is surrounded by multi-million dollar properties including the holiday home of Gareth Morgan, worth more than $10m, directly opposite the reserve.
But Tauranga MP Simon Bridges says residents are concerned about further anti-social behaviour escalating in the area.
"The situation is not so much about him. Where their concern really is is where to from here," Bridges told Magic Talk.
Bridges has written to Tauranga City Council but says nothing has happened.
"They said all the right things and then it was the sound of crickets," he said.
Locals want wrap-around services or housing providers to step in and help Awhi find a better living arrangement, Bridges said.
Listen to the full interview with Simon Bridges above.