Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Kiwi Brothers on Intrepid Ride in Vietnam


Kiwi Brothers on Intrepid Ride in Vietnam

Four New Zealand brothers are among a group of intrepid riders about to undertake an epic journey through the back roads of Vietnam on 45-year-old motorcycles.

Riding the entire length of Vietnam on The Great Honda 67 Ride, the Seton brothers from Auckland will be raising eyebrows, lots of dust and, they hope, plenty of cash to fund women’s and children’s healthcare in rural, central Vietnam.


“It’s a cause we feel strongly about and it’s going to be a great adventure, and anyone who supports us will be helping make a difference to folks that could use the help,” said David Seton, the man behind the ride. Seton is executive chairman of the mining group Besra and has been in Vietnam business a long time during which he became aware of the circumstances of village people, particularly near Besra’s operational sites in Quang Nam province.

“Women’s and children’s healthcare is an area where we can have major impact.” Seton says donated funds will go to a project in conjunction with a health organisation ‘East Meets West’ that has the expertise and networks to deliver exactly what’s required.

The three-year project has two main goals:
- To decrease the maternal mortality rate through improved emergency obstetric care in district hospitals and training for traditional birth attendants.
- To decrease the level of infant mortality and morbidity across two districts through improved newborn care services at district level and communal health centres.
Normally a Harley Davidson rider in New Zealand, where Besra is headquartered, Seton fell in love with the relatively small Honda 67 that for many Vietnamese is the only motorcycle they know.

“For many Vietnamese it was the first motorbike they ever saw, rode or owned. Honda designed it as a stylish little commuter motorcycle for city people and could never have imagined that these little bikes would become a nation’s workhorse both in cities and far beyond in mountain villages.

“They carry all manner of people and goods on their backs, fording streams like a fish takes to water.”

“When we came to Vietnam in the early 1990’s as entrepreneurs looking for adventure and opportunity in this colourful country slowly opening up to the outside world we started a 25-year long relationship with its people. We’ve become the leading gold mine operator in Vietnam, which has not been without its trials and tribulations. We work today with thousands of people in central Vietnam.”

Seton said his interest in the role of the Honda 67 was sparked by a conversation in Da Nang with a Vietnamese business owner who told him her father had used a Honda 67 to take her mother from their village to a medical centre in time for her to give birth to their daughter. Nguyen Diem drove his bike across country to take every person from their village needing to get to the medical centre.

At 6ft 2in tall Seton, 57, thinks he should know better than to attempt such a mission. The moral support comes from his older brothers Richard, joining the Ride from London, and Paul, Besra’s chief commercial officer, and younger brother John, Besra’s chief executive officer. Another family member teaming up for the Ride is Alexandra Seton, from the company’s public relations team.

Besra director Kevin Tomlinson, an Australian citizen living in England, Jim Hamilton, Besra’s V-P investor relations from Toronto, and other Besra staff are on the Ride. They’re joined by Phuong Huu Viet, chairman of VietABank and a member of the National Assembly Economic Committee and other Vietnamese, including a guide from Explore Indochina who claims to know every pothole and twist in the road.

The riders will travel more than 2,000kms through mountains, lush jungle, past great beaches, busy cities and remote villages. Seton does not expect the journey to be all fun and photo ops. “Some of the roads are going to be extremely difficult and the weather can be very unpredictable. Add to that, mosquitoes, the inevitable upset stomachs and some very sore posteriors.”

“We’ve got ten Honda 67s, a support van, a cameraman, Google map, a medical kit and a sense of adventure. Thankfully, there isn’t one village in Vietnam where someone doesn’t know how to repair a 67!”

http://honda67ride.tumblr.com/

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Parliament Kicks Off: Carter Re-Elected Speaker

The 51st Parliament held its commission opening today with MPs sworn in and David Carter elected Speaker.

The day began at 11am with the three Royal Commissioners – the Chief Justice, the Court of Appeal President, and the Chief High Court Judge – declaring the new Parliament open.

After the Commissioners left the Chamber the swearing in of MPs took place in alphabetical order. Unlike some previous openings all MPs managed to swear on the bible or affirm their oath without any hiccups... More>>

 

Labour: Review Team Named, Leadership Campaign Starts

Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban.

ALSO:


Roy Morgan Poll: National Slips, Labour Hits Lows

The first New Zealand Roy Morgan Poll since the NZ Election shows National 43.5% (down 3.54% since the September 20 Election). This isn’t unusual, National support has dropped after each of John Key’s Election victories... However, support for the main opposition Labour Party has crashed to 22.5% (down 2.63% and the lowest support for Labour since the 1914 NZ Election as United Labour). More>>

ALSO:

In On First Round: New Zealand Wins Security Council Seat

Prime Minister John Key has welcomed New Zealand securing a place on the United Nations Security Council for the 2015-16 term. More>>

ALSO:

TPP Leak: Intellectual Property Text Confirms Risk - Jane Kelsey

The US is continuing its assault on generic medicines through numerous proposed changes to patent laws. ‘These are bound to impact on Pharmac if they are accepted’, according to Professor Kelsey... Copyright is another area of ongoing sensitivity... More>>

ALSO:

RMA: Smith Plans Reform To Ease Urban Development

Newly appointed Environment Minister Nick Smith has announced Resource Management Act reform to foster urban development, where high land prices and expensive resource consents are blocking efforts to provide affordable housing. More>>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On New Zealand getting involved (again) in other people's wars

Apparently, the Key government is still pondering how New Zealand will contribute to the fight against Islamic State. Long may it ponder, given the lack of consensus among our allies as to how to fight IS, where to fight it (Syria, Iraq, or both?) and with whose ground troops, pray tell? More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On child poverty, and David Shearer’s latest outburst

The politicisation of (a) the public service and (b) the operations of the Official Information Act have been highlighted by the policy advice package on child poverty that RNZ’s resolute political editor Brent Edwards has finally prised out of the Ministry of Social Development. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On the government’s review of security laws

So the Key government is about to launch a four week review of the ability of our existing legislation to deal with “suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters, and other violent extremists.”

According to its terms of reference, the review will consider whether the SIS, GCSB and Police are sufficiently able right now to (a) investigate and monitor suspected and returning foreign terrorist fighters… More>>

ALSO:

Labour Davids: Lisa Owen Interviews David Shearer

David Shearer still mulling whether to stand for Labour leadership but says his family doesn’t think it’s a good idea. Declares that it will be “incredibly divisive” for the Labour caucus if David Cunliffe returns to the role of leader. More>>

ALSO:

Taser Use & False Evidence: Timaru Officers "Failed To Follow Good Policing Practice"

The Authority found that even if Mr Reuben’s contact with the officer was deliberate it amounted to only a minor assault. While it found the use of the OC spray was justified, the use of the Taser was not a proportionate response... More>>

ALSO:

Little Surprise: Andrew Little To Contest Labour Leadership

I have decided to contest the Labour Party leadership. There are three immediate issues to deal with: creating greater cohesion across the caucus, rebuilding the relationship between caucus and the Party and, most importantly getting the process under way to listen to the voters who have abandoned us... More>>

ALSO:

Two Fewer Votes In Recount: "Positive Result" - Harawira

When I applied for a recount of the votes from the Tai Tokerau election, I made it clear that this application was not aimed at overturning the election result, but ensuring that all votes cast by Maori were treated with due respect, regardless of whether those votes are for Labour, Maori Party or MANA. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news