95bFM: The Wednesday Wire with Paul Deady 9/4/08
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1220 – Margaret Taylor,
Amnesty International refugee co-ordinator
Refugees are back in the spotlight again following decisions by the High court and the Refugee Status Appeals authority to refuse refugee status to 27 year-old Iranian woman Bahareh Moradi. As a Christian convert she fears that her deportation, scheduled for the end of March, will lead to persecution, torture or even the death penalty back in Iran. So she's now gone into hiding. The minister for immigration declined to comment saying it was not appropriate to discuss individual cases. And this case is particularly murky, with allegations Moradi's brothers, who have been granted refugee status here, were involved in people smuggling rings out of Korea. At 1220 I'll be speaking with (above) who says regardless of whether she's a genuine Christain, our government should not be taking a punt on something that could lead to someone being tortured.
1240 – Chair
of IPAC - Bev O'Keefe
A change of tack at 1240, when I'll be speaking with Bev O'Keefe, who's the chair of the Independent Practitioners Association Council. They're a group which advocates for NZ GP's – which they say are the heart of the NZ health system. Unfortunately, the heart ain't in very good health. Latest figures from the Royal NZ College of Gps has found that almost ¾ of our Gps are aged between 41 and 60. What's more, they like to retire early, and they're not being replaced by young doctors. Bev says GP retirement looms like a tsunami for NZ health and drastic measures are needed to reverse the trend.
Then at one I'll be joined on the line by the head of the Police Association Greg O'Connor Police are currently reviewing their firearms policy, and there's concern our quote unquote "unarmed" force is nothing of the sort. Figures would seem to back this up: In 3 months at the end of last year, Police signed out firearms at the rate of one every hour. Yikes. But Greg says access to firearms is vital to protect NZers and it is important not to make Police less effective for political reasons. I imagine tasers are the answer...
Selwyn Manning from the crack team at scoop.co.nz will be our counterclockwise go-to today. We'll be taking a look at the political ramifications of NZ First's stance on the FTA with China. It's an election year, so should it be that much of a surprise that Winston, despite his Foreign Minister hat, has spoken out against the agreement? Along with Peter's posturing, we'll also be taking a quick look at scoop's new book feature which looks very sparkly indeed.
1340 – David,
And to finish the show, I make good on last weeks no-show with Moon-Fish, aka David from anti-Church of Scientology group Anonymous. I spoke with him yesterday about his group – which it turns out isn't much of a group at all – and why Scientologists get under their skin so. Yes indeed, the man behind the Optimus Prime mask speaks out!