Radio New Zealand - Wednesday, 6th April 2011

This page lists items from RNZ that are available online. RNZ didn't start regularly putting both its audio and news content online until 2008. From 2002-2007 written news items (particularly from RNZ International) were placed online. You can access items prior to 2002 on the historic page.

This page features: Afternoons, At The Movies, Business News, CEISMIC, Checkpoint, Midday Report, Morning Report, News Stories, Nights, Nine To Noon, Parliament - Question Time, Rural News, Upbeat


Auckland Story for 6 April 2011 - Lonely Miaow
Lonely Miaow has been rescuing stray and abandoned cats in Auckland for fifteen years now. But the founder of Lonely Miaow Peter Dorman has bigger plans, to get rid of all unwanted such animals from greater Auckland and in a perfect world from all of New Zealand. Its estimated there are about half a million stray cats in Auckland alone. [more]

Best Song Ever Written - Ballad of Buckskin Bob
Donald King of Amberley chooses 'Ballad of Buckskin Bob' by Tex Pistol. [more]

Link 3
Can you spot the connection in our music quiz? [more]

CTV returning
The six story Canterbury Television building collapsed and burned in the February 22nd quake, killing 16 staff and close to 100 other people in the building. The regional broadcaster is back on air with limited programming and aims for a full launch in May. [more]

Honouring the fallen
In January 1971 an American soldier who had shown great kindness to New Zealand troops serving in Vietnam, died defending an unnamed hill near the Cambodian border. Commanding Officer Paul Leary and his US Special Forces were stationed next door to the No1 New Zealand Army Training Team. Vietnam veteran Rob McAllister was there with the Royal New Zealand Engineers. [more]

Feature Album - The Concert for Bangladesh
The Feature Album is 'The Concert For Bangladesh' - held at New York's Madison Square Garden on August 1, in front of 40,000 people, it was the first major benefit concert in music history. [more]

Virtual World with Hamish MacEwan
Scam Awareness Week, and do people need desktop computers? [more]

The Panel Pre-Show for 6 April 2011
Your feedback, and a preview of the guests and topics on The Panel. [more]

The Panel with Raybon Kan and Islay McLeod (part 1)
The families of 29 men killed at the Pike River Mine have been assured that there will be no winners or losers at the Royal Comission's inquiry into their deaths. [more]

The Panel with Raybon Kan and Islay McLeod (part 2)
The Minister of Maori Affairs, Dr Pita Sharples, says Te Waka Maori pavilion will be excellent value for money, and Eating three bananas a day could be enough to slash the risk of a stroke according to some new research. [more]

At The Movies

At The Movies for 6 April 2011
On an At The Movies Special, Simon Morris goes where wiser critics fear to tread, and assesses the past two years of New Zealand films. As far as quantity is concerned it's been highly successful, with over a dozen major features, and heavy local input into James Cameron's Avatar and the upcoming Hobbit films. But what about the quality? [more]

Business News

Morning Business for 6 April 2011
News from the business sector including a market report. [more]

Markets Update for 6 April 2011
A brief update of movements in the financial sector. [more]

Midday Business News for 6 April 2011
Auckland's largest real estate firm reports a large surge in sales and prices, and China hikes interest rates. [more]

Evening Business for 6 April 2011
News from the business sector including a market report. [more]


Work begins replacing lost rest home beds
Health officials in Christchurch have today begun work on a recovery plan for how they will replace hundreds of beds lost in rest homes because of the recent earthquake. [more]


Checkpoint Top Stories for Wednesday 6 April 2011
PM says no to appeal for Pike River legal aid, Clayton Weatherston appeals his conviction, Louisa Wall replaces Darren Hughes, and Government defends Te Waka Maori decision. [more]

PM says no to appeal for Pike River legal aid
The Prime Minister is insisting the receivers of the Pike River coal mine can afford to pay, and must pay their own legal costs to attend the Royal Commission inquiring into the tragedy. [more]

Clayton Weatherston appeals his conviction
The Court of Appeal is considering whether a documentary about provocation which aired at the same time as the Clayton Weatherson murder trial could mean he didn't get a fair hearing. [more]

Auckland housing market heats up in March
The Auckland housing market exploded into life in March with the city's largest real estate agent posting its best month in four years. Sales by Barfoot and Thompson's surged 75% while average prices and rents reached record highs. [more]

Engineers stop leak at Fukushima plant
Highly radioactive water is no longer leaking into the sea after a breakthrough by engineers at Japan's severely damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant. [more]

Government defends Te Waka Maori decision
The Government is defending its decision to contribute nearly two million dollars for a waka-shaped pavilion for the Rugby World Cup. [more]

Breast cancer register aims to help increase survival
The latest breast cancer patient register which opened today is expected to help increase survival rates of the disease. [more]

Work begins replacing lost rest home beds
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

What Pike River receivers have to say
The Prime Minister is telling the receivers of the Pike River coal mine to front up and pay up. They'd asked the Government for help with their legal costs to attend the Royal Commission into the mine explosions that killed 29 men. [more]

Australia's defence force investigates sex tape allegations
Australia's Defence Force has called in police to investigate accusations made by a first-year female cadet about a sex video. The 18-year-old says she was unknowingly filmed having consensual sex with another first-year cadet. [more]

Waatea News for 6 April 2011
News from the Waatea team. [more]

Breast cancer register aims to help increase survival
The latest breast cancer patient register which opened today is expected to help increase survival rates of the disease. [more]

British mechanic forced to leave New Zealand
A British mechanic who's invested his life savings in a Northland business is being forced to leave the country. Martyn Payne who is 62, was accepted into the country on a Long Term Business Visa in 2005, after having heart valve surgery in the UK. [more]

Auckland real estate agency's bumper month
Auckland's largest real estate angency says record highs in March came out of the blue. Barfoot and amp; Thompson, which accounts for a third of the Auckland market, sold 1070 houses in March, up 75% from February. [more]

Louisa Wall replaces Darren Hughes
The former Labour MP Louisa Wall is replacing Darren Hughes in parliament. Mr Hughes stood down after it was revealed the police were investigating a complaint against him from a young man. [more]

Medvedev rocks boat
Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev has raised the prospect of a leadership battle with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin who's widely expected to want another go at the top job next year. [more]

Evening Business for 6 April 2011
Urgent Couriers is expanding into the trucking business. It's bought a rival freight company, Inter City Urgent, and expects to increase its turnover by at least 40 per cent over the next year and double its profitability. [more]

Promoter of property scheme fined
An Auckland man who misled vulnerable people into thinking they were buying homes has been fined nearly $280,000. [more]

Sports News for 6 April 2011
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

Clayton Weatherston appeals his conviction
The Court of Appeal has today considered whether or not a documentary about provocation which aired at the same time as the Clayton Weatherson murder trial harmed his right to a fair trial. [more]

A warning about proposed new spy laws
There's a warning that proposed new spy laws will make it easier for the SIS to create a permanent army of informants who are immune from prosecution. [more]

Waatea News for 6 April 2011
News from the Waatea team. [more]

Principals hear why Asian studies should be a top priority
About 80 school principals have been told Asian studies, including Mandarin language and Asian history should be a top priority for mainstream school curriculum. [more]

Warehouse offers insurance for pets
The Warehouse is moving into the pet insurance business. It's just become a distributor for the worlds largest animal insurance company Petplan. [more]

KiwiRail passengers believe they're not getting value
Too many old trains breaking down and not enough new carriages are causing headaches for Kiwirail and its passengers in Wellington. Overcrowded trains mean commuters are left stranded on the platform and fares are often not collected. [more]

Midday Report

Midday News for 6 April 2011
A hearing for Clayon Weatherston begins at the court of appeal. [more]

Midday Sports News for 6 April 2011
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

Morning Report

Top Stories for Wednesday 6 April 2011
First the Giant Rugby Ball, now the Giant plastic Waka! Who should pay to keep Pike River receivers at the Royal Commission and elderly people evacuated from Christchurch after the quake,may not go home for a year. [more]

Demolitions of family homes start in suburban Christchurch
Demolitions have begun in suburban Christchurch. [more]

Pacific News for 6 April 2011
The latest from the Pacific region. [more]

Waatea News for 6 April 2011
News from the Waatea team. [more]

Giant plastic waka to be Cup hospitality centrepiece
The government is to give the Auckland iwi Ngati Whatua o Orakei nearly 2 million dollars to build a giant plastic waka. [more]

Receivers for Pike River coal mine ask government for help
The receivers for the Pike River coal mine have asked the government for financial help to prepare evidence for the Royal Commission into the deaths of 29 workers last November. [more]

Taxpayer forking out 2 million for giant plastic waka for Cup
The government is giving the Auckland hapu, Ngati Whatua o Orakei, nearly 2-million dollars to build a giant plastic waka as a Rugby World Cup showpiece. [more]

Sharples explains his support for giant waka
The Maori Affairs Minister, Pita Sharples, has been listening to that and joins us. [more]

Pike's former head say funding key for robust Commission
Questions are being asked about why the Government should stump up with money for the Pike River coal company to have full legal representation at the Royal Commission into the mine disaster. [more]

Demolitions underway in suburban Christchurch
Demolitions of suburban homes in the quake-ravaged city of Christchurch have begun. [more]

Canterbury DHB to begin bringing elderly back home
It could be more than a year before many elderly people evacuated from Christchurch will be returned home. [more]

In Ivory Coast, Laurent Gbagbo has reportedly handed himself in
In Ivory Coast, Laurent Gbagbo has reportedly handed himself in to UN officials in the capital of Abidjan. [more]

Century later, Shackleton's whisky judged a superb drop
More than a century after being left behind in frozen Antarctica, the cork has been pulled on one of Ernest Shackleton's bottles of whisky. [more]

Sports News for 6 April 2011
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

Kiwirail expect to buy 2000 railway wagons from China
Kiwirail is expected to announce in the next few weeks it is to buy more than two thousand railway wagons from China. [more]

TV stars reminisce over Avalon studios golden era
Television stars of the past and present are lamenting the loss of Television New Zealand's Avalon Studios, which the state broadcaster says will be sold in two years. [more]

Scientists scan Christchurch's unstable cliffs with laser
Three-dimensional laser scans of the shattered cliff faces of Christchurch's seaside suburbs, are helping scientists work out if any more rocks are likely to fall. [more]

MP Shane Jones decries World Cup waka plan
The Government has agreed to give the Auckland hapu, Ngati Whatua o Orakei nearly 2 million dollars to build a giant plastic waka on Auckland's waterfront. [more]

Labour MP says Pike River's claims 'disturbing'
The Labour list MP for the West Coast, Damien O'Connor, says it's disturbing to hear the receivers of the Pike River coal mine do not have the funds to participate fully in the Royal Commission into the disaster. [more]

Government refuses to assist contractors at Pike River
Meanwhile, the Government has refused to pay for legal representation for contractors working in the mine at the time of the disaster. [more]

Minister sizes up Foreign Affairs for radical overhaul
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Murray McCully has told his ministry he will continue to open up top diplomatic jobs to private candidates. [more]

Oil industry frustrated at lack of environmental safeguards
The oil industry and environmentalists are speaking as one saying they are frustrated the government has not yet put in place environmental protections for offshore drilling. [more]

Sports News for 6 April 2011
An update from the team at RNZ Sport. [more]

Youth Law says student search breaches Bill of Rights
A lawyer working for Youth Law says Education ministry plans to give schools the power to search students for drugs and weapons is ridiculous and a breach of the Bill of Rights Act. [more]

In Libya, oil exports look set to resume
In the rebel held east of Libya, oil exports look set to resume after a tanker arrived in the port of Marsa el Hariga. [more]

Waatea News for 6 April 2011
News from the Waatea team. [more]

Telecom critical of 2degrees texting contest
Telecom says one of its rivals is taking advantage of the mobile rates system, costing it tens of thousands of dollars. [more]

Top-secret files shed new light on Cold War defection
Previously top-secret files are shedding new light on one of Australia's greatest Cold War defection stories. [more]


Egyptian Treasures
Significance of the damage and loss of ancient artifacts as a result of Egypts's recent revolution with lecturer in Ancient History, Jennifer Hellum from the University of Auckland. [more]

Clue number 5. [more]

Clue number 6. [more]

Nine To Noon

Rugby World Cup 2011 promotion
With guests Michael Barnett, Chief Executive of the Auckland Chamber of Commerce, who is in charge of The Cloud and Rawiri Taonui, a Maori commentator. [more]

Kidney Stem Cells
Dr Alan J. Davidson has found kidney stem cells in zebrafish that can be transplanted successfully from fish to fish - he's now researching whether this is can be applied to humans, which would mean kidneys could be regenerated to tackle chronic kidney damage caused by diseases like diabetes. [more]

Australia correspondent Karen Middleton
Chief political correspondent for SBS Television. [more]

Feature Guest - Farida Sultana
Founder of Shakti, an Asian womens support group in NZ, and co-author of Purple Dandelion. [more]

Book Review with Justin Gregory
The book is 'Russian Winter' by Daphne Kalotav, published by Arrow. [more]

Music review with Marty Duda
Music of Duran Duran. Duran Duran have a new album out called All You Need Is Now produced by Mark Ronson. [more]

Legal correspondent - Grant Illingworth
Looks at the decision to deny the"Urewera 18"the right to a jury trial. [more]

Science correspondent David Haywood
Allergies and human mortality. [more]

Parliament - Question Time

Question Time for 6 April 2011
Questions to Ministers 1. Hon PHIL GOFF to the Prime Minister: Does he stand by his statement that dividends from State-owned Enterprise energy companies help pay for services like doctors and hospitals and can he confirm that the dividends earned last year from the four companies amounted to $732 million? 2. CRAIG FOSS to the Minister of Finance: Have after-tax average weekly earnings been rising faster than inflation; if so, what are the implications for rates of New Zealand Superannuation? 3. Hon JIM ANDERTON to the Minister of Finance: What is the fiscal deficit likely to be in the calendar year 2011, and what would the fiscal deficit be if there had been no tax cut on 1 October 2010 for the top 5 percent of earners? 4. Dr PAUL HUTCHISON to the Minister of Health: What reports has he received in relation to the number of doctors and nurses working for New Zealand's district health boards? 5. Hon ANNETTE KING to the Minister of Finance: What programmes does he consider "nice to have" and should be cut? 6. TE URUROA FLAVELL to the Minister of Finance: Does he still believe that following the Government's review of the foreign investment rules that "New Zealanders are able to feel that those things that they think are important about New Zealand are … protected"; and what influence did the outcomes of that review have on the Overseas Investment Office's decision to grant consent for Carter Holt Harvey to sell more than 17,000 hectares of central North Island forestry blocks to a company with ownership spread between ten countries including the United States, Saudi Arabia, Denmark and Liechtenstein? 7. Hon DAVID CUNLIFFE to the Minister of Finance: Is it correct that Treasury was in the Prime Minister's office "week after week, month after month" telling him South Canterbury Finance was going bankrupt? 8. ALLAN PEACHEY to the Minister of Education: What reports has she received regarding the building of schools at Hobsonville Point? 9. GARETH HUGHES to the Minister of Finance: Does he stand by his statement that "[e]very day New Zealanders are making decisions to change their behaviour based on changes in the oil price"; if so, how will those behaviour changes be reflected in Government infrastructure investment? 10. Hon DAMIEN O'CONNOR to the Prime Minister: Does he stand by his statement on the Pike River Royal Commission of Inquiry that "we are taking this inquiry absolutely seriously, we are determined to get answers for those families, and we will leave no stone unturned"? 11. CHESTER BORROWS to the Minister for Social Development and Employment: How have the 1 April changes provided greater certainty to those receiving benefits and New Zealand Superannuation? 12. JACINDA ARDERN to the Prime Minister: Does he stand by all his statements made during question number six on 15 March 2011? [more]

Rural News

Morning Rural News for 6 April 2011
News from the rural and farming sector. [more]

Midday Rural News for 6 April 2011
Dairy prices soften for the second time in a month. [more]


Robert Costin
British organist performing at Holy Trinity Cathedral in Parnell this weekend and with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra. [more]

Maurice Till
Peter Mechen looks back at the life of New Zealand pianist Maurice Till. [more]

Shane Bosher
Artistic Director of Silo Theatre's 'Did I Believe It?' taking place in Auckland and Wellngton. [more]

News stories:

Government defends finance firm bill
Prime Minister John Key says he has double-checked with Treasury and is confident the Government's handling of South Canterbury Finance has been financially prudent. [more]

Families confident Pike River inquiry will reveal truth
The families of the Pike River coal workers who died in explosions at the mine last November say they are confident the Royal Commission will uncover the truth about the cause of the tragedy. [more]

TVNZ to sell Avalon Studios
One of the last Television New Zealand shows to be filmed at Avalon Studios in Lower Hutt is being moved north. [more]

Seismic activity may continue for decades
People in Canterbury are being warned of more earthquakes and aftershocks for years to come. [more]

Wednesday's newspaper headlines
Almost 200 students suspended; bail-rape accused wins bail again; Pike River Coal requests aid. [more]

Less spending on the pleasures of life
Household purchases on discretionary items has dropped, as higher food and fuel prices dig into people's pocket money. [more]

Super regulator's board named
The eight-person board of New Zealand's new super regulator, the Financial Markets Authority, has been named. [more]

Australia holds key interest rate
Australia's central bank has kept interest rates steady at 4.75% for the fifth month in a row. [more]

US Fed officials express unease on inflation
The US Federal Reserve has released the minutes from its latest meeting, which has expressed some unease about rising inflation. [more]

MSG does not pose a threat to role of Forum says NZ's foreign minister
New Zealand's foreign minister, Murray McCully, says a strong Melanesian Spearhead Group does not pose a particular threat to the role of the Pacific Islands Forum. Fiji's interim Prime Minister... [more]

NZ's McCully restates need for more value from overseas aid programme in Pacific
New Zealand's Foreign Minister, Murray McCully, has reiterated the need for the country's overseas aid programme to give value for taxpayers' money, particularly in the Pacific region. In a speech... [more]

Losing candidate in Samoa general election rejects call to drop petition
An unsuccessful candidate in Samoa's general election has rejected a call to drop his election petition against the new Minister of Finance, Faumuina Tiatia Liuga. Tautua Samoa party candidate, Le... [more]

Cook Islands director of audit cleared of criminal wrongdoing
The Cook Islands Director of Audit, Paul Allsworth, has been cleared of any criminal wrongdoing following a police investigation into a complaint made in July last year. The complaint was... [more]

Pacific Forum on disabilities underway in NZ
Palau representatives are attending for the first time a regional forum for people with disabilities in the Pacific, being held in Auckland this week. The Omekesau Association's Villaney Remengesau says... [more]

Calls for Pacific governments to do more to protect disabled women from abuse
Women attending the Pacific Disability Forum this week in Auckland, are calling on governments to do more to protect disabled women from abuse. Forum secretary, Naomi Navoce, says many women... [more]

Teachers to be given power to search students
The Education Minister says the Government will change the Education Act to give teachers and principals the power to search students for drugs and weapons. [more]

Maori diabetes support group set up
A group of west Aucklanders has set up a Maori diabetes support group after undergoing a six-week self management programme run by Waitakere Hospital. [more]

Residents protest at unruly youngsters
A hikoi appears to have stemmed the anti-social behaviour of a small group of young people who were terrorising a Whangarei suburb. [more]

PM says he would welcome snap election
Prime Minister John Key says he would welcome a snap election if the Labour Party wants to go to the polls over South Canterbury Finance and the state of the economy. [more]

Oil industry wants action on environmental safeguards
The oil industry says it is frustrated the Government is stalling on environmental protections for offshore drilling. [more]

England golfer says Woods won't win in Augusta
The British golfer Ian Poulter has discounted four-time Masters winner Tiger Woods' chances of challenging at Augusta this week. The former world number one Woods has not won a tournament... [more]

Boyle qualify's for World Champs in non-specialist event
US-based swimmer Lauren Boyle says she surprised herself in qualifying for the 200 metre freestyle at July's World Champs after winning the same event at the New Zealand Nationals in... [more]

Rodman surprised at Hall of Fame honour
The controversial former basketballer Dennis Rodman has expressed his surprise at being inducted into the sport's hall of fame. Rodman played for five NBA teams winning three titles, one with... [more]

Argentina take 2-nil series lead over Hockeyroos
The Hockeyroos have been edged by world number one Argentina 3-2 in game two of their four test series in Canberra, and after losing game one by the same margin... [more]

Westwood laughs off mid-air scare
The world's number two golfer Lee Westwood has been playing down the drama of his plane making an emergency landing on route to the Masters at Augusta. Fellow golfer Ross... [more]

Greek sprinters on trial for fakin accident
The doping-linked Greek sprinters Costas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou are facing reduced sentences if convicted in a perjury trial. The Sydney Olympic medalists are on trial, accused of faking a... [more]

Man U appeal on Rooney's behalf
Manchester United have accepted Wayne Rooney's charge from the English FA for swearing at a TV camera, but the club is appealing against his two-match ban. Rooney was charged with... [more]

Man United desperate to break Stamford Bridge hoodoo
Manchester United are chasing their first victory against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in nearly a decade on Thursday as the English giants collide in a heavyweight Champions League football quarter-final. [more]

Man arrested for stealing FA Cup tickets
A man has been arrested on suspicion of stealing 900 tickets for the upcoming FA Cup football semi-final between Manchester City and Manchester United at Wembley Stadium. Two special delivery... [more]

Sangakkara steps down as Sri Lanka captain
Kumar Sangakkara has stood down as captain of Sri Lanka's limited overs cricket team after their World Cup final loss to India but plans to carry on as the interim... [more]

World Cup winning coach hails his captain
India's departing cricket coach Gary Kirsten has hailed his World Cup winning-captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni as the best leader in contemporary cricket, and he has a lot more to offer. [more]

Matai set to return to NRL and vows to maintain aggression
The New Zealand league international Steve Matai has promised to continue with his aggressive style of play despite the Manly star's NRL judiciary record hanging ominously over him. The explosive... [more]

Scary start to Masters week for Westwood
The world golf number two Lee Westwood had a scary start to Masters week after surviving a harrowing trip just getting to Augusta. The Englishman was involved in a midair... [more]

Rugby gaining popularity on back of Sevens success
A new report has discovered a rugby boom in emerging regions, including Asia and Africa, which has boosted global participation by 19 per cent since the 2007 World Cup. The... [more]

Boyle makes most of return home
It's been a happy homecoming for US-based Lauren Boyle at the New Zealand National swimming Championships in Auckland, with the 23-year-old returning from her current base in California to claim... [more]

Murali scared of computers?
Sri Lanka's legendary spin bowler Muttiah Muralitharan is struggling to qualify to play English county cricket this year - because he is scared of computers and examinations. A recent change... [more]

International Wire Story.
CRICKET-IRELAND/ SPO-IE-CRIC-GB-EUROPE-GEN-EZC 04-06 0451 CRICKET-IRELAND/ (INTERVIEW) INTERVIEW-Ireland to fight 'outrageous' ICC World Cup decision By Padraic Halpin DUBLIN, April 5 (Reuters) - Ireland will fight the International Cricket Council's (ICC [more]

Demolition of homes under way
Demolitions have begun in suburban Christchurch as rebuilding in the city after the earthquake gets underway. [more]

Telecom says rival's contest encourages spamming
Telecom says one of its mobile phone rivals is taking advantage of the rules on text messaging, and costing it tens of thousands of dollars. [more]

Union unconvinced by MAF meat inspection assurances
The union representing meat inspectors still has concerns about possible changes to inspection procedures despite assurances from the Ministry of Agriculture that food safety and health issues won't be compromised [more]

Farmers to pick up aviation fuel price spike
The rising cost of aviation fuel is forcing topdressers to increase charges to farmers by up to 8% for their aerial spraying services. [more]

Beekeepers keep watch on Australian management of bee pest
Beekeepers are keeping a close watch on moves in Australia to control an aggressive bee invader. [more]

Mine receivers ask Govt to help with legal costs
The receivers of Pike River Coal have asked the Government for funding to enable them to provide evidence to an inquiry into the mine disaster. [more]

Schalke stun defending champions Inter Milan
Holders Inter Milan face almost certain elimination from European football's Champions League after collapsing to a stunning 5-2 home defeat by a makeshift Schalke 04 team in their quarter-final first... [more]

Real move closer to Champions league glory
Real Madrid have given their quest for a 10th European Cup crown a major boost with Emmanuel Adebayor netting twice to help Jose Mourinho's men record a 4-nil destruction of... [more]

Rising sevens star declined diversion for assualt
Declan O'Donnell, the up and coming New Zealand rugby sevens star accused of assaulting two men in a Hamilton pub brawl will face the courts after his application for diversion... [more]

Contractors want legal representation at Pike River inquiry
A group of contractors who worked at the Pike River Coal mine say they are reluctant to appear before a Royal Commission without legal representation, as it might incriminate them in other investigations. [more]

Ngapuhi runanga buys another Kaikohe business
The Ngapuhi runanga has added another Kaikohe business to its investment portfolio. [more]

Foreign affairs ministry to be leaner - McCully
The Government says a major revamp of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade will make it a modern, leaner and more adaptable agency. [more]

KiwiRail to buy hundreds more wagons from China
KiwiRail is expected to announce in the next few weeks that it plans to buy more than 2000 railway wagons from China. [more]

200 metres national champ realistic about World Champs chances
The United States based swimmer, Lauren Boyle, says she realistically won't be a medal chance at July's World Championships in China despite winning the New Zealand national 200 freestyle final... [more]

Commission would consider compelling witnesses
The Royal Commission into the Pike River coal disaster is reiterating it would consider compelling witnesses to appear at its inquiry into the disaster if it had to, but does not wish to force people to appear. [more]

PNG's Ok Tedi boasts record profit
The Papua New Guinea state-owned miner, Ok Tedi Mining, has announced record earnings. In 2010 it made a net profit of 732 million US dollars after tax, the highest ever... [more]

2011 New Caledonia road toll doubles
There has been a sharp increase in the road toll in New Caledonia. In the first three months of this year, 20 people have been killed in a string of... [more]

Fiji and PNG in land swap after MSG summit
The Fiji Ministry of Lands is finalising lease details of the pieces of land given by the interim government to fellow Melanesian Spearhead Group countries Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and Papua... [more]

Niue speaker to quit politics after last assembly sitting
Niue's Speaker says he will quit politics when the assembly is officially dissolved at the end of the week. The Premier will gazette the dissolution of the House on April... [more]

American Samoa governor threatens lawmakers with allowance cuts
American Samoa's governor is threatening lawmakers with cuts to their expense allowances, following their decision not to pass his administration's revenue-generating bills. Togiola Tulafono says the government may struggle to... [more]

Temaru determined to implement 2011 budget approved by Tahiti assembly
French Polynesia's new President, Oscar Temaru, has confirmed that he will implement the 2011 budget approved by the assembly last February. His predecessor, Gaston Tong Sang, who was ousted last... [more]

Return of elderly could take more than a year
Canterbury District Health Board plans to start moving elderly people back to Christchurch early next month, though the process could take longer than a year. [more]

Quake repairs on high-rises 'could take years'
The Society for Earthquake Engineering says the time it could take before some multi-storey buildings in Christchurch are repaired could keep parts of the city shut down for years. [more]

TelstraClear ramps ups broadband rollout criticism
One of New Zealand's biggest telecommunications companies is stepping up its criticism of the way the Government is setting up ultra-fast broadband. [more]

Vanuatu publisher welcomes Iauko case progress
A Vanuatu publisher has welcomed the court appearance of the government minister he accused of assault, but says he's concerned pressure will be applied to the prosecution. The State Prosecution... [more]

Not enough information to pass bills says American Samoa Fono as layoffs loom
The Fono in American Samoa is blaming a lack of information for its decision not to pass revenue-generating bills, as Governor Togiola Tulafono instructs government agencies to prepare for layoffs. [more]

Huge task to repair Christchurch sewerage system
The Christchurch sewerage system suffered six times as much damage in the February earthquake as it did in the September earthquake. [more]

Lotto jackpot hits $34m
Lotto's Powerball jackpot has hit $34 million this week, as the 'must-be-won' draw was boosted by $2 million due to increased sales in the past few days. [more]

Fonterra dairy auction prices slip again
Dairy prices have fallen once again in Fonterra's latest fortnightly global auction. [more]

Freight firm buys out rival
Urgent Couriers has bought out rival freight company Inter City Urgent, allowing it to move into the trucking business. [more]

China hikes interest rates
China has raised interest rates for the second time this year, as it struggles to keep inflation in check. [more]

Retailer moves into pet insurance
The Warehouse is moving into the pet insurance business. [more]

Fonterra, Nestle drop Chilean joint venture plan
Fonterra and Nestle have dropped plans to extend their South American joint venture into Chile. [more]

Leading Maori farmer says land report long overdue
A leading Maori farmer say reports into unlocking the agribusiness potential of Maori freehold land is long overdue. [more]

Sonny Bill Williams announces his next fight
The All Blacks midfielder Sonny Bill Williams has announced when his next boxing bout will be, but not against who. Williams, who's unbeaten in his three previous bouts, will fight... [more]

Nicklaus says older players have it easier than in his day
The legendary Jack Nicklaus says older players have it much easier than in his day when it comes to winning golf Majors because of the advances in equipment. Nicklaus won... [more]

Parramatta player doesn't want dog put down after it bit him
The Parramatta hooker Matt Keating says he doesn't want his family dog put down after it badly bit him ruling him out of the National Rugby League for six weeks. [more]

Rugby playing numbers jump 20 percent globally
Japan, Sri Lanka and the United States have all joined rugby's top ten participation list. A report by the Centre for the International Business of Sport at Coventry University shows... [more]

Govt accused of treating small foresters unfairly
The Farm Forestry Association has accused the Government of denying small-scale foresters carbon income from their trees. [more]

Pacific Business Council welcomes NZ's Guam plans
Signals from the New Zealand foreign minister, Murray McCully, that he's planning to set up a diplomatic post on Guam has strong support from the New Zealand Pacific Business Council. [more]

Taggers target New Caledonia caretaker leader
New Caledonia's caretaker President, Harold Martin, and one of his party colleagues, Pascal Vittori, are reported to be lodging a formal complaint after death threats were made against them over... [more]

Vanuatu National Council of Women upset over Kilman's Papua
Vanuatu's National Council of Women says the Prime Minister's decision to grant Indonesia observer status at the Melanesian Spearhead Group summit, was a breach of Melanesian solidarity. The Council's President,... [more]

Vanuatu PM stresses rule of law amid Iauko case
A spokesperson for Vanuatu's prime minister says the law must be allowed to prevail now one of his ministers has been charged in relation to the assault of a newspaper... [more]

Appeal expected today against Tonga's Ashika sentence
The New Zealand man jailed for five years on Monday for his role in the sinking of the Tonga inter-island ferry, the Princess Ashika, is to lodge an appeal today. [more]

Schools to be built under public-private partnership
The Government is to commission the first schools built in New Zealand under a public-private partnership. [more]

Air NZ to check Boeings after safety directive
Air New Zealand will carry out safety checks after an emergency warning from manufacturer Boeing about 737 jet airliners prompted by an incident on a US plane. [more]

Officer 'brutally attacked' in West Auckland
An officer has been assaulted in West Auckland in what police have described as a brutal attack. [more]

Tonga Police Commissioner says promotion a key grievance with petitioners
Tonga's Police Commissioner says the promotion by merit system is a key grievance among officers who signed a petition calling for his removal. Chris Kelley says he's now had three... [more]

Mothballed Skyhawks to be offered to mueums
The Government has abandoned attempts to sell the Air Force's mothballed Skyhawk fighter jets and nine of the 17 planes will be offered to museums. [more]

Temaru presents new French Polynesia government
French Polynesia's new President, Oscar Temaru, has presented his new ten-member government to replace the administration of Gaston Tong Sang which was ousted in a no confidence motion last weekend. [more]

Father says Weatherston appeal a waste of time
The father of the woman killed by Clayton Weatherston says an appeal that he did not get a fair hearing is a waste of time and money. [more]

Otago bowler takes five wickets in one over
The South African born, Otago fast bowler Neil Wagner has created New Zealand cricket history in taking five wickets in one over. Playing against Wellington in a Plunket Shield match... [more]

Sydney Roosters player narrowly avoid prison term
The Sydney Roosters rugby league player Todd Carney's narrowly avoided a prison sentence for his latest drink-driving offence. The club has also apologised on his behalf after he was late... [more]

Vettori's successor should be appointed by end of May
New Zealand Cricket hopes to have appointed a successor to retiring Black Caps skipper Dan Vettori by the end of next month at the latest. Vettori confirmed at the recent... [more]

Auckland house sales and prices rise
Auckland's largest real estate agency has had its best month for house sales in four years in what it says is a sign confidence is returning to the market. [more]

Coroner won't reopen inquiry into NZ Airbus crash
Newly-released findings from a Hamilton coroner support a French investigation into the crash of an Air New Zealand plane in 2008. [more]

Legal aid reforms passed into law
Parliament has passed legislation making major changes to the legal aid system. [more]

More quake zones set to reopen
Several parts of central Christchurch are set to reopen over the next few days, as more cordons come down in three areas outside the red zone. [more]

Louisa Wall confirmed as new Labour list MP
The Electoral Commission has confirmed that the Labour Party's new list MP will be Louisa Wall. [more]

US officials assure Marshall Islanders over nuclear contamination concerns
United States government officials have assured Marshall Islanders not to worry about radioactivity emitted by damaged nuclear reactors in Japan despite having no radiation monitoring equipment in the island nation. [more]

Pacific communities urged to treated disabled with respect
The CEO of the Pacific Disability Forum is urging communities to treat disabled people with more support and respect, and says a change in attitude is what's needed. Setareki Macanawai... [more]

Quake-hit station to resume broadcasts
Christchurch Television says it plans to resume broadcasting in the next two weeks. [more]

Spending on Rugby World Cup waka pavilion defended
The Maori Affairs Minister is defending the almost $2 million of government money going towards a plastic waka-shaped pavilion, as only a tiny proportion of Rugby World Cup promotional spending. [more]

Breast cancer patient register opens in capital
New Zealand's fourth publicly-funded breast cancer register has opened in Wellington. [more]

British mechanic forced to leave NZ
A British mechanic who invested his life savings in a Northland business says he is sad that the Immigration Service is forcing him to leave New Zealand. [more]

Former National Party president's husband killed
The husband of former National Party president Judy Kirk has died in a hunting accident near Taupo. [more]

State of national emergency extended
The state of national emergency in Christchurch has been extended until 12 April and will be lifted when the newly-formed Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority has taken over the recovery effort. [more]

More chemical toilets for eastern suburbs
A fresh batch of chemical toilets is being brought in for residents in Christchurch's eastern suburbs who missed out of the last delivery. [more]

Shackleton replica whisky blend judged a fine drop
A bottle of whisky, painstakingly recovered from Ernest Shackleton's hut in Antarctica, has been replicated in a limited edition run, and is being described as sublime. [more]

Weatherston argues he did not get a fair trial
The Court of Appeal has reserved its decision over whether a Dunedin man who killed his former girlfriend received a fair trial. [more]

Receivers seek cheaper way of taking part in inquiry
Receivers of Pike River Coal say they will go back to the Royal Commission to try and find a cheaper option for its participation in the mining disaster inquiry. [more]