Anti›mandate feed bales slashed

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REPORT & PHOTOS: NICK BROOK/SUPPLIED

Owaka farmers were supported by friends and neighbours after scores of bales of stock feed were damaged on Thursday night in an attack apparently targeting the anti›mandate protest.

Both farmers support a Clutha movement opposed to vaccine mandates, and said each of about 80 bales damaged was worth about $100, and they were now facing a significant problem.

‘‘There’s enough pressure from the drought without animals having their feed attacked,’’ farmer Andrew Jackson said, who had 30 bales slashed although only 10 bore the message “Wake up NZ’’.

Michael Magiera, who had also received abusive text messages, was saddened the words on his bales: “For or against — let’s not divide”, had been attacked.

“I’ve asked some people why mandates are needed, how vaccination choice endangers others and they don’t answer, they just get angry. My message was about tolerance,” Mr Magiera said.

Police investigating the cases had taken sections of wrapping for fingerprinting.