16 Jul 2013

Payout backing a boost for injured army brothers

10:09 am on 16 July 2013

One of two brothers badly injured while serving in the army says a parliamentary committee finding has boosted their confidence in their quest for compensation.

For a second time in 10 years, a parliamentary committee has told the Government it should compensate the men.

George Nepata fell from a stretcher during an exercise in Singapore in 1989 and is a tetraplegic. His brother, Damien Nepata, was severely burned when a tank overturned at Waiouru in 1994. Both have received compensation from ACC.

Damien Nepata told Radio New Zealand's Morning Report programme that having a second endorsement strengthens and validates their argument.

"But I think if again the Government says ... that's not good enough or strong enough, then we really have no avenue left open to us."

In 2003, the Government rejected a recommendation from the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade committee to compensate the Nepatas.

Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman said on Monday there is no new information in the committee's report and any decision is some weeks away.