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Witnesses From Asia Honour People's Inquiry

Media - for immediate release


Five overseas guests from Indian, Philippines and Malaysia have been attending the six day hearing People's Inquiry into the effects of aerial spraying pesticide in Auckland.

The Convenor, Hana Blackmore, said today that the attendance of delegations from Asia as part of a community exchange programme initiative of Pesticide Action Network Asia & the Pacific (PANAP) was a great honour.

"They have been a tremendous support the people of Auckland during the hearings. Their presence has provided a unique opportunity to witness and share stories, as they have also experienced the unfortunate effects of misguided aerial spraying".

Dr Meriel Watts, Co-Convenor of PANAP's Pesticide Taskforce and Co-ordinator of PAN Aotearoa New Zealand, is pleased that a special lunchtime session has been arranged for today in the Council Chamber, for the people from India and the Philippines to share their experiences.

"They will be able to share with us their experiences of the effects of aerial spraying of pesticides over their villages, and also the steps taken by their communities to deal with the situation".

Dr Watts said the Indian delegation will reveal what has happened to their health, their children and their animals as a result of many years of aerial spraying of the insecticide endosulfan on nearby cashew nut plantations. In the Philippines, ongoing aerial spraying of a number of pesticides on banana plantations has resulted in environmental devastation and chronic health effects.

Members of the public and media are welcome.

What: The aerial spraying of pesticides - an international perspective.

When: Friday 24th March - 1.00 - 2.00pm

Where: Council Chambers, Waitakere City Council Civic Centre, 6 Waipareira Ave, Lincoln.

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