“Sid, the man who would set himself alight on Parliament front lawns. His Story.”
Several people private messaged me as they only found out where he had gone and what happened after the pictures posted on Facebook, they wanted his story told.
Another who saw him often said, “I never saw him as a man who would ever be pushed so far to reach breaking point, he was not one to be pushed around he fought for what he believed in and its heart breaking to know he died the way he did because that is the only way he thought people would listen.”
He is Czech-born mechanic Zdenek (Sid) Hanzlik, confirmed by both ladies who knew him and privately contacted me. He owned F.H. Autoservice Ltd, Sunset Rd, Rotorua which he closed up a little over a week ago and set his affairs and accounts in order. In 2009, His Japanese wife and their two children moved to Japan and left him to sell the business and join them later. Things didn’t go to plan and years later he was in a custody battle over access with his now teenage children, most recently having a S133 report done on him by CYFS, these reports are notorious for its drawn out process.
He was lonely, frustrated at the Family Court System and didn’t feel listened to. Lets not make this about a mum or a dad story, but focus instead on levels accountability, how heresy in family court is an acceptable bar for evidence. You certainly wouldn’t expect it in criminal court. There is a mental health aspect to this story and people will question his stability, and understandably so. By all accounts Sid was a sane, if not stoic individual who deeply suffered loss of contact with his children in a system that would make anybody go mad, and does. When you take away everything from a person they will do one of two things, Kill others or Kill Themselves.
Karl Pearce BSW (Hons.). has been a political commentator and activist in and around Papaioea Palmerston North, New Zealand for 15 years with the last 8 in both student and community radio. Karl currently produces and hosts his show ‘On Point w/ Karl Pearce’ on Access Manawatu which is a political, current affairs radio show. Karl is academically published and intermittently blogs. If you want to know more about Karl you can find him at www.Karl.Kiwi.nz