Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Re: [pima.nius] membership

2:56 PM |

. . .


kia orana peter,

sorry to hear of your problems - was it with PIMA NIUS (this group) which is for PIMA (NZ) or with PFF (Pacific Freedom Forum) or PIJO (Pacific Islands Journalism Online) ?

One final item ... was it this address peterpanther08 at hot mail dot com ?

thanks,

jason

. . .

jason brown
+6421 024 84 560
http://journalismincrisiscoalition.blogspot.com

"There are a thousand hacking at branches of evil to one who is striking at the root." Henry David Thoreau.

. . .



On Thu, Dec 23, 2010 at 11:33 AM, peter marsh <peterpanther08@hotmail.com> wrote:
Hi, 
I was wondering why I have been cut off twice from membership to this group since suggesting the posting of articles on the human tragedy unfolding on Easter Island. For a site purporting to be encouraging freedom of the press, it seems that you are doing exactly the opposite.
Please reinstate my membership. If not please give me a reason why.
Peter Marsh

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[pima.nius] membership

2:33 PM |

Hi, 

I was wondering why I have been cut off twice from membership to this group since suggesting the posting of articles on the human tragedy unfolding on Easter Island. For a site purporting to be encouraging freedom of the press, it seems that you are doing exactly the opposite.
Please reinstate my membership. If not please give me a reason why.
Peter Marsh

[pima.nius] Noble Tu'ivakano chosen as Tonga's new prime minister

11:27 AM |

Noble Tu'ivakano chosen as Tonga's new prime minister


Noble Tu'ivakano (left) as the Minister for Sports - now the new PM. Photo: Oceania Football

Alex Perrottet


21 December, 2010

The contest for Prime Minister of Tonga is over, with noble Tu'ivakano being elected by a slim margin in a secret ballot today.

The vote, from among the Parliament made up of the elected People's Representatives and nobles, was 14 in favour of Tu'ivakano and 12 for 'Akilisi Pohiva, leader of the PTOA, or the Democratic Party of the Friendly Islands.

Pohiva, a former broadcaster and human rights and democracy activist, was voted into Parliament representing Tongatapu, where his party won nine out of the possible 10 seats in last month's historic election.

The Democratic Party of the Friendly Islands won 14 out of the 17 seats for commoner citizens in the November 27 election, and yesterday the party's members were calling for a People's Representative to be elected from the Parliament as Tonga's new Prime Minister.

Pohiva's supporters argued that it would be fitting that the leader of the most popular party be chosen to lead the country, to truly reflect the democratic nature of the election.

However, supporters of noble Tu'ivakano argued that an independent Prime Minister, not aligned with the now dominant Democratic Party of Friendly Islands, would be best for Tonga.

They argued for unity and that an ideal leader would be someone not influenced by a dominant party's agenda.

Tu'ivakano has held his noble's title since 1986 and has been a noble's representative in Parliament since 1996. He is a former speaker of the Legislative Assembly and most recently was the Minister of Training, Education, Youth and Sports.

Despite Pohiva having the weight of the democratic election in his favour, he had earlier campaigned for a cabinet of national unity, as a bid for an effective government, comprised of party representatives, independents and nobles.

While Tonga is taking some major steps towards a more democratic system, the ideal of governmental unity is far from the reality. Since the landslide election in favour of the Democratic Party of the Friendly Islands, the noble's representatives mobilised to put forward a single candidate to be nominated against Pohiva.

With all the nobles and just enough independent representatives, Tu'ivakano secured just one vote above the 50 percent majority required to become Prime Minister.

How the new government is shaped is yet to be seen, but Tu'ivakano is expected to name the new ministry in the new year.

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[pima.nius] PR: WikiLeaks: NZ ponders future Fiji, Solomons policies

11:25 AM |

WikiLeaks: NZ ponders future Fiji, Solomons policies

Press Release – Wikileaks

February 14, 2007. PM Clark strongly supports the timeline and processes recently discussed by Australian, New Zealand, and US officials to encourage Fiji's return to democracy. The GNZ believes that the upcoming Pacific Island Forum (PIF) Eminent …


WikiLeaks cable: NZ ponders future Fiji, Solomons policies

February 14, 2007 NZ ponders future Fiji, Solomons policies

date:2007-02-14T01:54:00 source:Embassy Wellington origin:07WELLINGTON141 destination:VZCZCXRO6657 PP RUEHPB DE RUEHWL #0141/01 0450154 ZNY CCCCC ZZH P 140154Z FEB 07 FM AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3874 INFO RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA PRIORITY 4734 RUEHSV/AMEMBASSY SUVA PRIORITY 0562 RUEHPB/AMEMBASSY PORT MORESBY PRIORITY 0635 classification:CONFIDENTIAL reference:06WELLINGTON966|07WELLINGTON141|07WELLINGTON68|07WELLINGTON69 ?C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 WELLINGTON 000141

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/FO AND EAP/ANP E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/13/2017… ?C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 WELLINGTON 000141

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/FO AND EAP/ANP E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/13/2017 TAGS: PREL, PGOV, XB, XV, FJ, NZ SUBJECT: NZ PONDERS FUTURE FIJI, SOLOMONS POLICIES REF: A. WELLINGTON 69 B. WELLINGTON 68 C. 06 WELLINGTON 966

Classified By: DCM David J. Keegan, for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d)

1. (C) Summary. PM Clark strongly supports the timeline and processes recently discussed by Australian, New Zealand, and US officials to encourage Fiji's return to democracy. The GNZ believes that the upcoming Pacific Island Forum (PIF) Eminent Person's Group report on Fiji will be key to determining whether the PIF can place constructive pressure on Fiji's interim government to improve its human rights record and accept a timeline for new elections. The EPG's draft report is apparently quite firm, but NZ officials are concerned it may be toned down by senior PNG and Vanuatu leaders reluctant to erode Melanesian solidarity. The GNZ also continues to monitor the Solomon Island's with concern, and believes the GOSI's dispute with the Regional Assistance Mission (RAMSI) may be at a critical point. NZ officials worry that the simultaneous conflicts in the Solomons and Fiji may overwhelm the PIF and break down unity within the group. End Summary

2. (C) PM Clark is fully on board with the approach to Fiji endorsed by U.S., Australian, and NZ officials during their recent meetings in Hawaii, Deputy Foreign Secretary Alan Williams told DCM and Pol-Econ Couns on February 12. Williams said the PM intends to retain NZ's sanctions (ref C) until Fiji's interim agrees to a specific timetable for a return to elections. At that point, the GNZ will review whether to loosen up sanctions as well as consider electoral and other possible assistance.

————————-

EPG Delivers Firm Message

————————-

3. (C) The DCM noted that even with a timetable for elections, it will be hard to make real progress without an improvement in Fiji's human rights situation. Williams agreed, noting that the upcoming Pacific Island Forum (PIF) Eminent Persons Group report to PIF Foreign Ministers will play a key role in determining whether the group will place effective pressure on PM Bainimarama and his appointees. The GNZ has heard that the draft report does in fact deliver a united, firm message on what Fiji needs to do to return to democracy. It calls for a suspension of the state of emergency, a return of the military to the barracks, the appointment of a civilian PM before the elections, and a credible date to be set for elections within 15-24 months. Williams attributed the strong message to the fact that that the PNG and Vanuatu EPG members were reportedly even more shocked than others in the group by the strong climate of fear they found in post-Coup Fiji. They apparently feel the Fijian Foreign Minister misled the December meeting of the Melanesian Spearhead group, which came out in solidarity with Fiji. (Using a Kiwi expression we had not heard before, Williams said that they felt they had been "sold a pup.") But Williams acknowledged that EPG's draft may be softened if senior PNG and Vanuatu leaders believe the report is too detrimental to Melanesian Spearhead Group unity.

4. (C) Williams said that Bainimarama appeared very confident when he met with the EPG. The Commodore put a statement into the EPG report noting it will be at least five years before Fiji can hold elections, and all sanctions must be removed before any balloting takes place. Figuring out "how to get rid of Frank" will be key to resolving the situation in Fiji, Williams said. Although Bainimarama claims Fiji needs at least five years to drive out corruption before elections can be held, in reality he is focused on keeping out of jail. Fiji's statute of limitations run between three and five years, so Bainimarama will not be keen to hold elections within two years unless he has some guarantee of immunity. On the other hand, a united PIF front, coupled with Fiji's desire to be back in the fold and the unfreezing of assistance, could break the impasse. For this reason, Williams said, we should maintain pressure to get Fiji to agree to the timeline and processes discussed in Hawaii.

——————————————— —-

Possible NZ Assistance to Fiji Democracy Building

——————————————— —-

5. (C) Michael Green, NZ's High Commissioner in Suva, was in Wellington last week and met with PM Clark and Williams. WELLINGTON 00000141 002 OF 002 Green pointed out that that there has not been a robust census in Fiji for at least 12-13 years. If the interim Fiji government agrees to a timeline, Williams said one useful form of assistance might be to do a new census and advise on a new seat allocation for Parliament. Over the longer term, it might also be helpful to provide advice on reform of Fiji's constitution, which currently enforces a multi-party system without mandating any inter-party negotiation. This has increased internal conflicts and undermined public faith in government.

—————————–

Critical Juncture in Solomons

—————————–

6. (C) Williams said that New Zealand continues to monitor the Solomon Islands with concern, as events there — notably the GOSI's opposition to RAMSI — may be reaching a critical juncture. Simultaneous pressures from events in Fiji and the Solomons could undermine PIF coherence, he added. Williams passed along "fulsome thanks" to EAP DAS Davies for having stressed to PM Sogavare that it is critical that the GOSI continue to cooperate with RAMSI. Williams added that while GNZ has been a bit more light-handed publicly in its approach to the GOSI than has Australia, they understood why Foreign Minister Downer felt he had no other choice but to speak out openly. FM Peters prefers to deliver his strong messages to GOSI behind closed doors, but he and other Kiwi officials have been coordinating exceptionally closely with their Australian counterparts. Now that both the Acting Police Commissioner and his Deputy are Kiwis, New Zealand may find itself forced to express its concerns more directly from now on, Williams added.

McCormick

ENDS

Content Sourced from scoop.co.nz
Original url

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Monday, December 20, 2010

[pima.nius] pactrade debate on report | why free trade means less productivity

10:28 AM |

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: PANG Campaigner <campaigner@pang.org.fj>
Date: Thu, 16 Dec 2010 09:36:48 +1300
Subject: Re: [pactrade] Aust Productivity Commission Report on FTAs
To: pactrade@yahoogroups.com

The below email comes from Harvey at AFTINET.


For everyone's information I have reproduced below is AFTINET's media
release that went out yesterday. We are undertaking some further
analysis of the report and I will circulate as soon as that is
available. Pat Ranald appeared on the ABC radio program PM yesterday to
comment:www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2010/s3093162.htm
<http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2010/s3093162.htm>

The report contains parts that will be usable and whilst it is not what
we would have hoped it is better than we feared. For example the
recommendation on Investor-State Dispute Processes to avoid their
inclusion and the caveats around them is effectively a direct
recommendation against their inclusion; the recommendation that
inclusion of IP should be avoided can also be used this way, the same
group recommendation suggests that a cautious approach to including
labour standards but doesn't use the stronger language on IP and ISDP
that they should be avoided. The headline of that group of
recommendations is also interesting reading: "The Australian Government
*should not include matter*s in bilateral and regional trade agreements
*that would *serve to increase barriers to trade, raise cots or *affect
established social policies* without a comprehensive review of the
implications and available options for change."

It is important to note that there is a dissenting report by Professor
Andrew Stoller, Associate Commisioner. He was appointed by the
government for his expertise - he heads the Institute for International
Trade at Adelaide University (he's the one that set the training courses
up for PACER-Plus officials), is a former deputy director of the WTO,
and numerous other positions within the neo-liberal trade establishment.
His need for a dissenting report should be a signal that the report
contains components that the advocates of neo-liberal policy do not like
and therefore should be useful to us, if only to blunt their arguments.

The devil in this will be the detail and that will emerge from analysis
now being undertaken. It is however clear that we will be able to use
components of the report in our campaigning.


*/Media release /*December 14, 2010


 Productivity Commission Report rejects key US demands in proposed
 Trans Pacific trade deal

 "The Productivity Commission Report on Bilateral and Regional Trade
Agreements contains many of the criticisms of the Australia-US Free
Trade Agreement and otheragreements raised by unions and community
groups," Dr Patricia Ranald, Convenor of the Australian Fair Trade and
Investment Network said today.

 Dr Ranald said that the report confirmed that the claimed economic
benefits of many of the agreements have been oversold, and are in fact
minimal or zero.

 "The report also confirms that some provisions in the Australia-US
Free Trade Agreement were in fact against the national interest and
should not be included in future trade agreements. These include
intellectual property provisions which increase monopoly rights for
corporations in areas like copyright and patents at the expense of
consumers. For example, extending monopoly patent rights allows drug
companies longer periods to charge very high prices for medicines,which
is clearly against the interests of consumers,"said Dr Ranald.

 "The report also recommends against investor-state dispute processes,
which give additional rights to foreign investors to sue governments for
damages outsidethe Australian legal system. Public campaigning kept
these extra corporate rights out of the Australia-US Free Trade
Agreement but US companies like Philip Morris are demanding them in the
current Trans Pacific negotiations between the US, Australia and seven
other countries," said Dr Ranald.

 "If these extra corporate rights were included in the Trans Pacific
Partnership Agreement, they would give tobacco companies like Philip
Morris the right to sue the government for damages if it introduces its
proposed cigarette plain packaging legislation."

 "We note that Trade Minister Emerson has said that he will not agree
to trade deals which are against the national interest. We urge him to
stand firm against these US corporate demands in the Trans Pacific
Partnership Agreement talks," said Dr Ranald.

*/ Contact: Dr Patricia Ranald, AFTINET Convenor, 0419 695 841/*


Yours In unity


Harvey



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. . .

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[pima.nius] MIJT: Pacific journalists face tough struggle tackling corruption

10:25 AM |

MIJT: Pacific journalists face tough struggle tackling corruption


Kim Bowden, Pacific Media Centre


20 December, 2010

Pacific-based journalists struggle to adequately play watchdog in countries rife with public and private sector corruption, according to Fiji media stalwart Shailendra Singh.

Despite highlighting a few standout cases of well-executed investigative journalism in Fiji, Singh called for more Fourth-Estate style journalism in the country during his presentation at the Media, Investigative Journalism and Technology conference held at AUT University earlier this month.

The experienced editor and media academic said one of the key reasons investigative journalism needs to be encouraged was because good governance was a major problem in the Pacific.

He referred to "daunting figures" from the 2006 Australian Treasury Department report which said Pacific countries had squandered $US75 million since independence through poor governance.

Singh, head of the University of the South Pacific journalism programme, said there was "no shortage of material" for investigative journalists to work in the region - official corruption and abuses were widespread and there were an "ample supply of dubious politicians and businessmen".

Fiji "does not have a strong history or culture of investigative journalism but there are some outstanding cases where research and in-depth reporting resulted in major exposes," he said.

"A lack of training, depth and experience in newsrooms" prevented journalists from undertaking more comprehensive research.

Heavy workload
In addition, he said, "promotion and pay rise is often based on the number of stories reporters produce in a day" and journalists are encouraged to focus "on daily news rather than chase stories that might not yield anything".

In a similar vein, Patrick Matbob, a lecturer in journalism at Divine Word University in Papua New Guinea and also in attendance at the conference, said investigative journalism was not strong in his country.

Media organisations in PNG had traditionally not encouraged a culture of strong investigative journalism due to a lack of resources, he said in his paper at the conference.

"The PNG mainstream media have always been chronically understaffed and reporters have been too busy providing daily news coverage."

According to Matbob, the woeful state of some government agencies also limits the progress of investigative journalism in PNG as well as any potential positive effects.

He said inefficiencies within state organisations prevented journalists from easily obtaining the information and data they needed when investigating stories.

In addition, these organisations often did not "follow-up and take action after the media have revealed some illegal activity or wrong doing", and no meaningful change occurs as a result of the little investigative work that is carried out, he said.

Punitive media law
Singh said government regulations discouraged Fijian journalists from digging deeper.

Recently decreed punitive media laws, introduced by the Banimarama government, were, he said, detrimental to investigative journalism.

"They prescribe hefty fines and jail terms for journalists who publish material that is 'against public interest or order, or national interest'.

"Government and media can have conflicting views about what is in the national interest," Singh said.

"Authorities have been given new search and confiscation powers. New disclosure provisions compel reporters to reveal confidential sources or face fines of up to F$10,000, or jail terms of up to two years, or both."

However, Singh believed new media technology could be used to overcome censorship barriers.

In Fiji, access to the internet was improving and a blogging culture was emerging, he said.

New era
Matbob talked of a new era of investigative journalism in Papua New Guinea, aided by the internet and taking place outside of mainstream media.

The advancement of new media, he said, had shifted the definition of who could be a successful investigative journalist and had provided a fresh method to hold powers to account.

Internet-savvy young people, who were "well-educated and concerned about the future of their country", were increasingly taking on the role of "citizen journalism" and, by self-publishing on the web, were forcing public officials to be more accountable.

"The new media's ability to disseminate information instantaneously was having some impact on public opinion and causing PNG leaders to be wary of their behaviour and actions," he said.

The United States Embassy in Fiji funded both Singh and Matbob's participation in the conference.

Another speaker, former Fiji Daily Post publisher Thakur Ranjit Singh, delivered a research paper about the "coup culture" in Fiji and how it had impacted on investigative journalism in the country.

He called for a stronger commitment to investigative journalism in the country and better training of journalists throughout the Pacific.

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Sunday, December 19, 2010

[pima.nius] Wikileaks on NZ Herald

10:36 AM |



 
WikiLeaks cable: NZ actions in the Pacific
New Zealand Herald
(C) Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) officials say New Zealand's main areas of concern in the Pacific are governance, economic stability and ...
See all stories on this topic »


 
WikiLeaks cable: Approach to aid in the Pacific - National - NZ ...
This is one of the diplomatic cables about New Zealand held by Wikileaks.
www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1...
WikiLeaks cable: Chinese/NZ talks on Pacific Island issues ...
July 12, 2006 Chinese/NZ talks on Pacific Island issues.
www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1...




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[pima.nius] Call for Papers

10:31 AM |



 

International Journal of Peace and Development Studies

www.academicjournals.org/IJPDS

 

 

Introducing ''International Journal of Peace and Development Studies''

 

Dear Colleague,

 

The International Journal of Peace and Development Studies is a multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal published monthly by Academic Journals (www.academicjournals.org/IJPDS). IJPDS is dedicated to increasing the depth of research across all areas of the subject.

 

 

Call for Papers

 

IJPDS  welcomes the submission of manuscripts that meet the general criteria of significance and scientific excellence in this subject area, and will publish:

 

·           Original articles in basic and applied research

·           Case studies

·           Critical reviews, surveys, opinions, commentaries and essays

 

We invite you to submit your manuscript(s) to academics.ijpds@gmail.com  for publication. Our objective is to inform authors of the decision on their manuscript(s) within four weeks of submission. Following acceptance, a paper will normally be published in the next issue. Instruction for authors and other details are available on our website; http://www.academicjournals.org/ijpds/Instruction.htm

 

IJPDS is an Open Access Journal

 

One key request of researchers across the world is unrestricted access to research publications. Open access gives a worldwide audience larger than that of any subscription-based journal and thus increases the visibility and impact of published work. It also enhances indexing, retrieval power and eliminates the need for permissions to reproduce and distribute content. IJPDS is fully committed to the Open Access Initiative and will provide free access to all articles as soon as they are published.

 

Best regards,

 

Emekagbor Richard,

Editorial Assistant.

International Journal of Peace and Development Studies (IJPDS)

E-mail: academics.ijpds@gmail.com  

http://www.academicjournals.org/ijpds      

 

 



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[pima.nius] FIJI: Commentator Walsh criticises RNZI for 'biased reporting'

10:28 AM |


Title – 7181 FIJI: Commentator Walsh criticises RNZI for 'biased reporting'
Date – 19 December 2010
Byline – Crosbie Walsh
Origin – Pacific Media Watch
Source – Croz Walsh's Blog, 18/12/10
Copyright – CWB
Status – Unabridged
----------------------------
* Pacific Media Watch Online - check the website for archive and links:
www.pacmediawatch.aut.ac.nz

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FIJI: COMMENTATOR WALSH CRITICISES RNZI FOR 'BIASED REPORTING'
http://www.pmc.aut.ac.nz/pacific-media-watch/2010-12-19/fiji-commentator-walsh-criticises-rnzi-biased-reporting

By Crosbie Walsh

(Croz Walsh's Blog/Pacific Media Watch): OPINION: Once upon a time Radio NZ International made some attempt to report news of Fiji objectively but for some time now it has only been publishing negative news, or news that can be construed negatively.  If you don't believe me, check out their website [and compare] their reports on Fiji with those on other Pacific Island countries.  

Their latest is a report from the Asia Development Bank that the economy "is trapped on a low growth path despite an overall economic benefit to the Pacific region from a gradual global recovery and firm finances in Australia"

Highlighted are low private investment caused by government actions (localisation of the news media, price controls and the Fiji Water saga — all of which were reported on negatively by the overseas media and so were at least partly caused by them) and the fact that Fiji is spending more than it earns. So is New Zealand. To reinforce the negatives, they cite an ADB officer in Suva, Emma Veve, who says the bank is not approving grants or loans for new activities to Fiji for the time being. My understanding is that government has not asked for any — for the time being.

Veve also referred to the need for structural reform, issues in the sugar industry, the need to right size government, civil service issues, and state-owned enterprise reform.

What she did not say — and what RNZI obviously did not enquire further about — is that all of these issues, raised months and years back by the ADB and the IMF,  are currently being addressed by the government. RNZI journalists only need to read this blog to learn about progress on most of them.

Radio NZI could have reported this ...

NEW MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR TOURIST DEVELOPMENT:  New Zealand-based Shah Group opened phase one of its Fun World Hotel last week in the West. The four star hotel will house 200 ulta-modern units consisting of eight VIP pool front units, a 860 sq.m swimming pool, a pool side bar and state of the art dining facilities.  

Construction has started on phase two, a multi-million dollar first ever water theme park and a mega mall. The 60-acre development will consist of a 10-acre theme water park featuring wave pool, a variety of water slides and chutes and a lazy river, a 200 plus store mega shopping mall consisting of its own cinema complex, medical centre and shopping/warehouse outlets, and. a 200-unit four-star hotel complex. It is hoped all three phases of the development will be completed next year. -- Based on 2010, No:2173.

... or this:

FIJI BOLLYWOOD: Several Indian film companies are scouting for locations in Fiji, where significant tax breaks are on offer. They say the incentives and government invitations have been a major drawcard for film producers and directors.Making films in the country will create jobs and have a positive impact on the economy.

... or this:
WINNING THE FIGHT V. CORRUPTION: A Transparency International Fiji survey conducted by Tebbutt Research shows that 53 percent of citizens surveyed think corruption has decreased — and 36 percent think it has increased. Most people interviewed believed in and supported the government's efforts in the fight against corruption.  

The question in this year's Global Corruption Barometer asked how you would assess your current government's actions in the fight against corruption? Interestingly 3 percent were undecided, 9 percent said it was ineffective and "a surprisingly 88 percent said it was very effective. That is the Fiji ratings that have come in this report." The 2010 Barometer probes the frequency of bribery, reasons for paying a bribe, and attitudes towards reporting incidents of corruption.

Instead ...
WE HAVE MORE RADIO NZI BIAS:

>>> "Fiji's interim prime minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, has hinted at a delay in drafting a new constitution. Last year, the interim regime abolished the 1997 constitution and said work on a new one would begin in 2012  and be finished in 2013. According to the Fiji Times, Commodore Bainimarama now says it should be in place come 2013 or 2014, when the interim regime has promised it will relinquish power to an elected government. He says developments are also focused on sectors such as health, education and water supply. He says those, and the People's Charter, are what the government wants implemented by 2013 or 2014."

The item blurs the distinction between when dialogue will start (2012) and when Constitutional (and Electoral) reforms will be complete. The institutional and infrastructural reforms that Bainimarama says he wants "implemented by 2013 or 2014" have started already, they are ongoing, and they are independent of the constitutional and electoral reforms.

The firm date for the Electoral reforms has always been at least 12 months before the elections in September 2014. It is expected both sets of reforms will take place in tandem but the priority is the Electoral reforms so that new political parties have time to form and organize in preparation for elections with new rules and electorates.

The suggestion that Bainimarama was hinting at delays (and the inference that he should not be believed, and that even the elections may be delayed) is pretty typical of the standard of their reporting.

I would welcome a counter-claim, backed by evidence, from Radio NZI.  
 
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Thursday, December 16, 2010

[pima.nius] Chilean 'thuggery' on Rapa Nui - some parliamentarian responses

10:08 AM |

Chilean 'thuggery' on Rapa Nui - some parliamentarian responses


A Rapa Nui man with a head wound in the Easter Island clash with Chilean security forces. Photo: El Mercurio de Valparaiso

Pacific Scoop

15 December, 2010

Grant McCall
While some scholars may question the division of the Pacific into Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia, there can be no doubt that the region firmly is separated linguistically into Anglonesia, Franconesia and Hispanonesia.

Hence my posts about the government thuggery on Rapa Nui at the moment. People are writing to me from Chile and I am following events as reported in the online Chilean press - in Spanish, of course.

As soon as the bloody events were known in Chile, Chilean parliamentarians rushed to condemn the heavy-handed actions by police, presided over by staunch rule of law advocate, the Minister of the Interior.

Some of their motivation may be due to scoring political points, but the ones I quote here are quite sincere and have appeared before advocating greater freedom for the Rapa Nui.

Senator Carolina Tohá, President of the "Democracy Party (PPD)" declared that the repression on Rapa Nui was typical of the current government which had sought always to enforce its opinions, rather than argue them.

Senator Juan Pablo Letelier, Socialist Party, visited Minister of the Interior Hinzpeter to declare that a government never should take measures against its own population.

Senator Letelier is president of the Latin American Commission for Human Rights (ALDHU)".

Communist Party Deputy (Congressman) Hugo Gutiérrez condemned the police actions on Rapa Nui, saying that he is going to urge his chamber to conclude an autonomy statute for the island with an eye to resolving the disputes.

Such an autonomy statute has been formulated and debated in the Chilean Congress since 2008, but yet to be enacted.

The congressman said some sources were saying that 14 police were injured during the forced removals, although no details have been published.

The congressman said in a press statement that he doubts these reports of police injuries.

Instead, there is a list of 21 Rapa Nui who were shot, two of whom are being taken to hospital on the mainland.

Follow the link posted for photographs of the injuries.

Here are the names to put to those bloodied bodies:

* Marco Antonio Tuki
* Claudio Tuki
* Pía Vargas Saavedra
* Rodolfo Hito
* Pedro Hito
* Enrique Tépano
* Benjamín Cadinali
* Teresa Tuki
* Moisés Tépano
* So Araki
* John Tuki Huke
* Mata Atan
* Manuel Riroroko
* Maori Pakarati
* Leviante Araki
* Ricardo Tépano
* Gaspar Tepihe
* Rodolfo Hito
* Sita Hito

Grant McCall is a social anthropologist and senior lecturer at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. He is the author of Rapanui: Tradition and Survival on Easwter Island.

Photos of the Rapa Nui wounded 'heroes'

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[pima.nius] REGION: NZ 'spying' no surprise, says Fiji

10:05 AM |



Title – 7174 REGION: NZ 'spying' no surprise, says Fiji
Date – 16 December 2010
Byline – Roland Koroi
Origin – Pacific Media Watch
Source – Fiji Broadcasting Corporation, 16/12/10
Copyright – FBC
Status – Unabridged
----------------------------
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NZ 'SPYING' NO SURPRISE, SAYS FIJI
http://www.radiofiji.com.fj/fullstory.php?id=33022

By Roland Koroi

SUVA (Fiji Broadcasting Corporation/Pacific Media Watch): News of New Zealand government spying on Fiji and tapping phone lines before and after the 2006 coup comes as no surprise, says permanent Secretary for Information Sharon Smith-Johns.

Smith-Johns says Fiji has always maintained that New Zealand was indeed spying on Fiji and the leaked documents revealed today have validated those claims.

The cables released by the Wikileaks website show that NZ used signals intelligence  to listen in on phone conversations between Fiji's military and leadership.

Smith-Johns say the Fiji government has nothing to hide and New Zealand could go on listening if they want.

>>> "Let them listen to what the government has to say. We've got nothing to say, we know where the Roadmap is taking us, we know of elections in 2014, we know when the constitution will come into place, we talk about this openly so let the NZ government spy on us and pass that information onto America or to Australia or to whoever they're passing the information to."

Smith-Johns has also refuted claims in overseas media that the leaked reports would anger Fiji Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama.

Smith-Johns says the reports only show that Fiji was right and that New Zealand was spying on Fiji.
 
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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

[pima.nius] WikiLeaks: NZ spied on Fiji military

11:09 AM |

WikiLeaks: NZ spied on Fiji military


MICHAEL FIELD - The Dominion Post
Last updated 05:00 16/12/2010

New Zealand has been using the Waihopai communications base to spy on Fiji's military, passing the intelligence to the United States Government, WikiLeaks cables reveal.

The base was used in the 2006 coup and probably the 2000 coup, although New Zealand officials have always denied that they were spying.

The WikiLeak cables, taken with other information made public on Fiji, point to the Government Communications Security Bureau being capable of listening in to Fijian mobile phones.

The revelation is likely to anger Fiji prime minister Voreqe Bainimarama, who seized power in a December 2006 coup.

At the time Commodore Bainimarama and his colonels publicly expressed fears that Australia and New Zealand were engaging in covert activity.

A leaked cable reports on meetings that then United States assistant secretary of state for intelligence and research, Randall Fort, had in October 2008 with the then External Assessments Bureau, the GCSB, the Prime Minister's Department and the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

US deputy secretary Margaret McKean wrote a cable summing up the meeting. "New Zealand views the situation in Fiji as `acute', and appreciates USG [US Government] support for the Pacific Island Forum position on Fiji. Fort commented that GNZ sigint [ New Zealand government signals intelligence] had been critical to USG understanding of the 2006 coup."

The cable does not disclose what New Zealand intercepted from the Republic of Fiji Military Forces, which was founded by New Zealand in World War II.

An earlier cable, on March 2, 2007, from the US embassy in Wellington and written by deputy chief of mission David Keegan, reported that then prime minister Helen Clark understood the implications of a post-September 11 world for New Zealand security.

"She also realised after the Fiji coup that New Zealand had become too reliant on Australian intelligence," the cable says. "Clark grasps that NZ must `give to get' and that some of our co-operative operations strengthen her country's security.

"But she also has been willing to address targets of marginal benefit to New Zealand that could do her political harm if made public. Over the past year, she has supported increased counterterrorism co-operation with us."

Mr Fort was briefed on Chinese activities in the Pacific by Maarten Wevers, chief executive of the Prime Minister's Department, and on Venezuela and Cuba, whose interest in the Pacific he likened to "that of the Russians in the past".

Mr Fort replied that "the backtracking of democracy" in the broader Pacific region was a concern to the United States. 

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[pima.nius] NZ: Journalists clash on Media7 over war reporting

11:02 AM |


Title – 7170 NZ: Journalists clash on Media7 over war reporting
Date – 15 December 2010
Byline – None
Origin – Pacific Media Watch
Source – Pacific Media Centre, 15/12/10
Copyright – PMC
Status – Unabridged
----------------------------
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JOURNALISTS CLASH ON MEDIA7 OVER WAR REPORTING
http://www.pmc.aut.ac.nz/pacific-media-watch/2010-12-15/nz-journalists-clash-media7-over-war-reporting

AUCKLAND (Pacific Media Centre/Pacific Media Watch): Two speakers from the AUT Pacific Media Centre's Media, Investigative Journalism and Technology Conference have featured in a controversial episode of  Media7.

Host Russell Brown also included New Zealand Herald columnist Garth George, who has had a running feud with conference presenter and investigative journalist Jon Stephenson.

George had earlier attacked Stephenson's military reporting from Afghanistan in the Herald's pages.

However, Stephenson had done his homework on George's own piece and the result was an entertaining experience for Brown, who sat quietly as the two journalists clashed.

Stephenson had interviewed about 100 people in the province of Bamiyan, asking them what they thought of the Kiwi soldiers and their work in the province. While most were happy with the way the soldiers treated them, two out of three were dissatisfied with the soldiers' reconstruction efforts.

George criticised Stephenson's article for what he claimed were its lack of balance, despite Stephenson recording a number of positive responses to the Kiwi troops' efforts.

Tough questions
Stephenson expressed his frustration: "This is the irony of all this work," he said.

"The dangers are real in places like Afghanistan but often they are more real in a place like New Zealand because there are a lot of powerful people who don't want the predominant narrative challenged.

"And they will pick up the phone, they will call your boss, they will send emails, they will call taint journalists at papers like the Herald and they will try to get their counter-narrative out there."

The comment was clearly a broadside at George. Stephenson then went on to say that George was entitled to his opinion, "bigoted and ill-informed though I find it", but also said he would not apologise for asking the tough questions about New Zealand's involvement in the war.

George did not come out fighting as strong.

"Oh, he's probably right," he said.

"I don't know what the fuss is about Russell. I considered that Mr Stephenson's report was negative and biased. 100 people out of 400,000 in one city in a huge area. What does that tell you about anything?"

The host responded that it was 100 more interviews than he or anyone else had done in Afghanistan.

George then explained that he had read Stephenson's article and then contacted the New Zealand Defence Force for some information.

"They sent me a whole heap of stuff which I went through and I used quite a bit of that in my column."

The problem, as Brown pointed out, was that there was a "lot of cut and paste".

Stephenson agreed, and had all the paperwork to prove it.

"Garth made the claim in the introduction to his story that my work seemed to be a premeditated attempt to belittle the work of the Defence Force," he said.

"Now he offered no evidence for that. I think that's an outrageous claim to make about a journalist whose integrity, credibility and impartiality are central to their work.

"This column from Garth is little more than Defence Force spin."

On the attack
Stephenson then went on the attack.

"I've got a question for you, Garth, you know, Garth, what are you?

"Are you a news man or are you a PR man? Because if all you are going to do is regurgitate the spin that you get from the army we may as well take you out of the equation and just let the military write it for you and that way the reading public will know to turn the bullshit indicator up a couple of notches."

George got defensive: "Well that's form. You know I get read. I get read by hundreds of thousands of people every day."

But Stephenson did not hold back: "You say you stand by everything you wrote. The only problem is that you didn't write much of it, do you not see that as a problem?"

George then went on to defend the admirable work that Kiwi troops were doing in Afghanistan.

"It all comes back to the question that every journalist has to ask himself or herself: What is my relationship to power?

George defended his credibility as a journalist, but was not concerned about Stephenson's claims.

"Well so what, who cares? Who cares for God's sake?" said George.

Embedded reporters
Earlier on the programme, Brown spoke to Dr Paul Buchanan about embedded journalism. Dr Buchanan, an international relations and security analyst, also presented to the MIJT Conference last weekend.

Dr Buchanan spoke about the issues of when media personnel are granted protection from the military to report from the 'frontline'. He said that it made for "raw and edgy" television, but that reporters did not give the full picture.

"It provides the reporter with tactical depth, and what it sacrifices is strategic breadth," he said.

"You're not getting the context of the war; you're not getting the collateral damage. What you're getting is the reporter who is both narrator and protagonist – he is the centre of the story."

Dr Buchanan said the idea of imbedded journalism seems attractive, but it creates problems for journalistic integrity.

"The synergies involved are really quite delicious – the reporter again gets his credentials burnished, the media outlets get access, and the military gets its preferred narrative," he said.

But Dr Buchanan said that when reporters are not tied to the military for their protection and yet are granted access, "they re-achieve objective distance". He called this the "Trojan horse of military reporting."

"I have no doubts that the reporters now who are embedded in the ISF command in Afghanistan are acutely aware that the cause is lost and now it is a matter of extrication gracefully," he said.

"But they can't write about that until they leave the embedded situation but I am sure we are going to see a lot of this in the build up the proposed withdrawal dates in 2011."

* Link: Media7 episode 28 on war reporting

 
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[pima.nius] PR Labour: Faafoi: Maiden Speech

11:01 AM |



 

 

Kris Faafoi

Labour MP for Mana

 

14 December 2010

Maiden Speech

 

 

 

Kris Faafoi,

Member of Parliament for Mana,

Maiden Speech

 

 

Te Atua alofa ma te agalelei, fakafetai, fakafetai, fakafetai lahi lele

Tokelau toku atunuku pele, fakafetai, fakafetai, fakafetai lahi lele

Mana, toku kaiga i Aotearoa, malo, fakafetai

 

Taloha Ni Mr Speaker.

Mr Speaker I am humbled, honoured and proud to join this Parliament as the Member for Mana and as a member of the Labour Caucus.

To the people of Mana – thank you.

It is an honour to serve such diverse and strong communities.

It's also an honour to be the first Tokelauan to serve in this House of Representatives.

We are a small and proud nation – who have the privilege of being New Zealanders.

And it's also an honour to have my parents here today.

They came to New Zealand to be Kiwis and give their children the opportunity to live the Kiwi dream.

Mum and Dad thank you – Today another dream has come true for your children.

This is not the first time I have spoken in the House of Representatives.

In 1994 as a spirited 18 year old Jim Anderton chose me as his Youth MP.

That September day I arrived not realising I had to give a speech.

Flustered and nervous I scrambled to write something on the spot.

I also recall a young –  well spoken – ginger headed Youth MP from up the line.

He spoke enthusiastically and seemed comfortable in his surroundings.

16 years on Darren nothing has changed!        

To say that the Mana electorate is diverse is an understatement.

At most street corner meetings during the by-election campaign we saw different slices of life.

From the well-established communities of Paekakariki, Cannons Creek, Titahi Bay, Pukerua Bay and Raumati.

To the emerging areas of Aotea, and the creeping growth of Whitby and Camborne.

Mana epitomises the catchphrase "it's got it all".

So can I say again = thank you = to the people of Mana.

Your diversity of culture, needs and opinions makes it a formidable challenge to serve as your voice in Parliament.

One that I am determined to meet.

I would like to thank my predecessor – The Honourable Luamanuvao Winnie Laban.

Winnie your devotion to Mana and hard work has made it a better place.

Can I thank you and Peter for your support for me and my family during the journey which has led me here today.

Ia  Manuia.

Can I take this opportunity to also acknowledge the other candidates in the recent by-election.

In particular I would like to acknowledge the Honourable Hekia Parata and Jan Logie.

On the whole the mood on the hustings was genuinely friendly.

Mana is one of the few electorates where spontaneous Pacific Island dancing is not an uncommon happening at campaign events.

I'm sure we are all glad my former TV colleagues did not make it to many of those.

I have not taken the well-trodden path to Parliament.

Many others who sit in this house today - from right across the political spectrum - have been involved in politics from a young age. I have not.

Despite that I have been a strong advocate for social justice.

As a youngster I was given the job by my father of delivering pamphlets for Jim Anderton.

There were hundreds of them – and I read them.

My mother who worked in a factory most of her life was a proud member of the engineers union.

Dad was president of the Hoon Hay Workingmens club – where opinions flowed as freely as the beer.

I wasn't scared to offer my opinion to those who I disagreed with even though they were older and wiser than me.

Dad was also a long time chair of the Boards of Trustees at Rowley Primary and Hillmorton High School – I had the pleasure of being the student rep with him in 1994 – this is where I learnt the value community involvement.

My parents came to New Zealand to invest in the potential for their family.

As teenagers my Mum and Dad left the tiny Tokelauan atoll of Fakaofo in the 1960's.

My father Amosa was one of the first scholarship students to leave for New Zealand. He went from a carefree lifestyle on a tropical pacific island – to boarding school in Masterton.

Dad – I don't know how you did it – but when I went hunting through your Wairarapa College yearbook and noticed your nickname was Romeo – it sounds like you did OK.

My mother Metita – left as part of a repatriation scheme – she didn't know she was leaving Tokelau until the day she left.

They departed their homeland as 16 year olds – they left behind their loved ones, their culture, their religion to seek a better life in New Zealand.

Through hard work and sacrifice – and some help from the state – they toiled to make sure their hard work counted for something.

My parents wanted to ensure their three sons and daughter were raised as New Zealanders – they also wanted us to hold on to the important aspects of their way of life from the Pacific.

For me the Tokelauan custom of inati – sharing on the basis of need - is something that is ingrained in my DNA.

I saw it first hand in 2003, on my first visit to Tokelau.

The men of the village set a large net to catch fish for all the families.

It was then divided up - to ensure no family would go without. 

That concept lies at the heart of Labour Party values.

It's about the many  - not the few.

I believe in strengthening communities.

I believe in equal opportunities.

I believe in strong social services.

I believe in a fair and decent living wage

I believe in building a strong economy

I know that education is the game-changer.

It provides opportunity.

It did for me.t

I grew up in an area not unlike Cannons Creek.

Rich = mainly in spirit

For me university was an extension of High School – I was expected to go.

But when I got there I didn't enjoy it – It was foreign, I wasn't prepared for it, and with just a handful of mates from my school studying alongside me -  I bailed.

That forced me to seriously think about the future I wanted to lead –

I contemplated an internship at the factory where my mum worked- and where I worked during uni holidays – the ladies on the production line – told me not to take it.

Some of the best advice I was ever given.

There were other jobs

But instead I enrolled in a journalism course.

To get me through my studies I worked as a cleaner – you can tell a lot about a person by the way they treat the cleaner.

I'm looking forward to returning to my old work place – to catch up with those who took the time to get to know me.

I also hope some of those who didn't are there too.

 

Only two years ago I was sitting in this House of Representatives – upstairs there in the Press Gallery.

I saw it as a huge honour to be a Member of the Press Gallery – I still do.

Now I really have jumped the fence – the dynamic has changed - but I look forward to a cordial relationship with you all.

I'd like to acknowledge those of you who I worked with closely.

Journalism is a noble trade – it's a pursuit of truth to inform citizens.

You act on the behalf of New Zealanders to ensure transparency and accountability.

I needed to take a step in another direction - to get closer to those values of social justice.

I found that as a journalist I was increasingly highlighting problems, issues, disputes and at times trivialities.

And after ten years - I wanted to be part of finding some solutions.

Serving the people of Mana in this Parliament is one half of achieving that goal – the other half is ensuring I work hard to make its communities grow stronger.

Those communities are diverse and so have diverse needs – but we all want the same things.

We want our workplaces to be fairer,

We want safer communities,

We want our children to have the education and opportunities to succeed in jobs we haven't even dreamt of yet.

We want access to quality healthcare,

We want transport systems that suit us,   

I want New Zealand to be an even better place for us to live and raise our children.

Our job is to keep them healthy,

Our job is to inspire and stimulate their minds through education.

Our job is to shelter them from harm,

Our job is to encourage them to speak their minds.

 

During the campaign I had the pleasure of calling in to see the staff and students of Postgate School.

It's decile 4, with more than 300 children all from varying backgrounds and ethnicities.

While having a cup of tea in the staffroom, one of the teachers told me that their school band - named TMI – for "Too many Islanders" had placed second in the battle of the bands competition just the day before.

At the end of our tour as we got closer to the school gym we began to hear some music.

It sounded pretty good – I thought someone must be blasting some tunes out of a stereo.

But no – it was TMI.

They blew me away- so young and such raw talent.

It was exciting to think how far they could go if given the right guidance, investment and encouragement.

I was so impressed - I asked them to play at our Election night celebration – they were one of the treasures we discovered during the campaign.

 

Postgate school for me is a microcosm of the Mana electorate.

Diverse in its makeup,

We don't rate up there as the country's richest electorate.

The people of Mana face their own challenges – but we are a community full of exciting potential that when invested in ==  could grow into something amazing.

There is much to be proud of in Mana .

From the small volunteer community organisations like Pregnancy help – who work out of an office in Cannons Creek to support new mums with the basics - like clothing, basinets, and nappies.

To large businesses like Whittakers Chocolate in Elsdon who are committed to the area, to their workers and to producing a world class product which many Kiwis will be over-indulging in this Christmas

To the Norths Rugby Club and Western Suburbs Football club – both who know what it's like to be champions.

And the staff and students of Whitireia polytechnic.

It is an institution that not only serves its students well, but also its community.

From its Māori and Pacific nursing courses – to its specialized driver training school –   The focus on shaping students to meet local business and community needs has a lot to do with its success and I look forward to Friday's graduation ceremony.

While there is much to be proud of there is also much to be done.

We must make our state homes in Mana better places to live and ensure there are enough to go round.

The social and health problems caused by cold damp houses in Mana and elsewhere in New Zealand needs to be addressed.

It is not good enough that Porirua East is the rheumatic fever capital of New Zealand.

We must roll up our sleeves to work with the many smart and determined local businesses, training and community organisations to find work for the 3000 people in my electorate who do not have a job.

We must find innovative ways to encourage those businesses to take on those workers – but not at the expense of fundamental worker's rights.

We must look at ways to encourage more parents to feel comfortable about taking a larger role in their children's education.

We need to ensure communities like Raumati have the public transport options they need, deserve and that are well overdue.

And we must also work to reduce the harm alcohol does in our community.

One of my enduring memories of the campaign will be of a father who'd had a few too many and who approached after a street corner meeting.

He said the booze was too cheap, too easy to get hold of and that he didn't want his kids to do what he was doing.

I could see the irony – I could also see that he was right.

 

I am proud to be a member of a caucus and a Party that's fundamental values are to make a commitment and investment in New Zealanders.

Can I then take this opportunity to thank the many volunteers who dedicated a lot of their time and exhausted a lot of their energy during the by-election campaign.

By elections are different beasts.

They attract a higher level of scrutiny and attention.

So to those of you who were there every day – it was a privilege working with you.

To Carol Hicks, Ferila Betham, Deborah Mahuta-Coyle, David Talbot, Litea Ah Hoi, Murdo McMillan,  Andrew  Beyer and Shane Laulu - words struggle to express how thankful I am for your efforts.

To Caroline Mareko and Elia Sefo – thank you - I send the love and prayers of the Labour Party family to you both. 

To those of you who came from outside of Mana – thank you for your commitment.

I'd like to thank Young Labour – especially the crowd that made the long drive up from Dunedin.

Thank you to John Ryall and the team of Service and Food workers union members that gave us so much support. Meaole's Marauders and Marlins  our hoardings teams - need a special mention.

Thanks to Andrew Little for the support of the EPMU. A special mention must go to Paul Tollich, Mark James and Damon Rongotawa.

To General Secretary Chris Flatt and the Labour Party Staff we couldn't have done it without you.

To my new caucus colleagues thank you for helping me become part of the team.

To Phil Goff.

It was a privilege to work for you – and to now be a member of your caucus.

Anyone that works with Phil knows the commitment and the passion he has for New Zealand.

Phil, thank you  - and to Annette King for the support you've given me and my family.

And to my family thank you for your support and love.

To my parents, my wife Gina, my son George, my in laws Ted and Daille, Lance, Jenny, Jessicah, Jason, Anna, my sister Maria and the many uncles, aunties, cousins nephews and nieces who supported me – fakafetai lava.

Only those who have sat in this house know the sacrifice, joy and angst families go through to get us here.

So my thanks and love goes out to all of you, and in advance my apologies.

Last week I got a letter of congratulations from Ward Clarke – my High School Principal.

I have two vivid memories of Mr Clark.

He espoused the value of the afternoon nap.

And each year he delivered us this quote from William Penn which inspired me and which I would like to share as I come to an end -.

I expect to pass through life but once. 

If therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again. 

 

No reira,

Ka nui te mihi ki ngā Rangatira o Ngāti Toa

Ka nui te mihi ki ngā whauau  katoa o ngā moutere

No reira tatou ma, huri noa i to tätou whare.

Rau rangatira ma, e te whänau, tena koutou, tena koutou, tena tatou katoa.

 

 

 


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pacific islands media association
pima.nius@gmail.com
aotearoa, new zealand
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