Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


NZ commits a further $10m to Gita-hit Tonga

New Zealand has committed a further $10 million to help Tonga recover from Cyclone Gita.

Jacinda Ardern and her partner, Clarke Gayford, are welcomed after landing in Tonga. Photo: Pool photo / Michael Craig / New Zealand Herald

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern made the announcement after meeting with Tongan Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva in the capital Nuku'alofa this morning.

New Zealand has so far contributed $2 million of emergency relief to three Pacific countries hit by the cyclone - Samoa, Tonga and Fiji, $750,000 of which went to Tonga.

Ms Ardern arrived at the meeting in the Tongan capital Nuku'alofa with Foreign Minister Winston Peters.

Mr Pōhiva was flanked by his Finance Minister, Energy Minister, Health Minister, and Agriculture Minister.

He has taken time off due to ill health but appeared in fine form if a little impatient, consulting his notes and officials.

Climate Change Minister James Shaw and Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni had place tags but did not arrive with Ms Ardern.

Both Prime Ministers shook hands and exchanged gifts.

Mr Pōhiva presented Ms Ardern with a traditional wooden carving of a small Tongan house.

"It's beautiful," Ms Ardern said.

She then presented Mr Pōhiva with a piece of pounamu, noting that it can only be gifted.

The meeting took place in the Saint George Palace, named for a former king and built with $15.7 million of Chinese grant money. It was completed last year and houses the Prime Minister and several cabinet ministers.

Meanwhile, New Zealand has appointed Tiffany Babington as New Zealand's new High Commissioner to Tonga.

The announcement has been made by Mr Peters, who said Ms Babington will lead the delivery of $US47m ($NZ64.6m) of investment over three years.

The investment is to be focused on the areas of energy, policing, justice and education.

Ms Babington has previously been posted to Vanuatu and Italy, and worked on global development, Pacific regional, Niue and Tokelau issues.

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Gordon Campbell On Labour’s Timidity:

What an odd post-Cabinet press conference that was yesterday, from PM Jacinda Ardern and Finance Minister Grant Robertson ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Prevailing Media Narratives About The Govt Coalition

The media reports the facts…. but that’s not the end of it, and nor should it be. It also marshals those facts and creates a story from them, usually one with a moral that’s implied or explicit. After six months though, it is still unclear just what the dominant media narrative is of the coalition government. Is it Idealistic But Impractical? Is its Heart in the Right Place, but is it Taking On Too Much? Is the coalition proving to be Fractious And Unstable, or is it Surprisingly Adept at Keeping Its Inherent Rifts Out of the Public Eye? More>>

RNZ Explainer: Why You Should Care About Cambridge Analytica

Facebook's shares have lost billions of dollars in value after something to do with data used by Cambridge Analytica. Confused? Here's what it means, and what could come next...More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The (Looming) Nurses’ Strike

It is (almost) possible to feel a bit sorry for the DHB negotiators engaged in the current nurses pay round. Come next Monday there’s every sign that nurses will resoundingly reject the pay offer the DHBs have put on the table, as being totally inadequate...More>>

Gordon Campbell: On A Trade War With China

As things currently stand, the White House has NOT included New Zealand on its list of allies whose steel and aluminium exports to the US will be exempted from US President Donald Trump’s recent hike in tariffs. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Credibility In Politics

Credibility is always such a fickle, unstable element in politics. You know it when you see it, though. More>>

Video And Report: Cory Doctorow Talks Machine Learning And Big Data

International internet and digital technology commentator Cory Doctorow talked about machine learning and big data at the Privacy Commissioner’s PrivacyLive event on 13 March 2018 in Wellington. More>>