Duncan Garner: Lack of Erebus memorial a stain on our past

OPINION: Just think about this for a second. 

It's quite unbelievable, possibly New Zealand's biggest oversight, but it's sadly true.

New Zealand has never had a proper or permanent memorial to the 257 people who died when Air NZ flight TE901 smashed into the side of Mt Erebus in 1979.

That means 257 people and their families have been totally overlooked.

They have never had a place they can come to, to reflect, consider, grieve, talk or just sit.

It was 1979, 40 years ago today. I was five. Since then we've had Prime Ministers - Muldoon, Lange, Palmer, Moore, Bolger, Shipley, Clark, Key, English and now Ardern. 

Ardern has rightly championed something, but it's a squabble at the same time - an arm wrestle between families.

Some want it, some don't. 

It faces the wrong way.

Too much concrete.

Not enough concrete.

What about 257 park benches instead?

No wonder it's turned into a prickly thorn amongst the Parnell roses - an oversized eyesore for some.

And all this fuss needn't have happened because justice and acknowledgement delayed means bitterness festers.

Yes, Air New Zealand can win all the fancy awards but they forgot. 

And yes, the Government can apologise to the Chinese, the homosexuals, the Samoans, every Maori and every iwi and every hapu. 

They can have memorials to miners, we can stop the nation for the Pike 29 and re-enter at a cost of almost $40 million, but the truth is those in power forgot about Erebus. 

Out of sight, out of mind. 

It is a stain on our past and now because it's so late local snobs - otherwise known as Nimbys - don't want it.

They want to drink wine amongst the roses and be all cheery and frolic and climb trees in the area apparently. 

But don't drink and climb trees - that's a bad idea. 

Anyway, I digress. It seems we slap memorials up overnight to anyone.

But because this is so so late - it's kind of tarnished it for me.

The memorial that we still haven't built 40 years on, and who knows if we ever will?

No wonder we can't build infrastructure.

Duncan Garner is host of The AM Show.