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Dover Samuels Future Uncertain – For Letters Make Human Map – Genome Reaction – Zimbabwe – Military To Give Speight Ultimatum – Fire Risks

DOVER SAMUELS FUTURE UNCERTAIN – The story won’t blow away. The fall out is deepening. The message I am getting from Maoridom is that they want the opportunity to make progress, says the PM, and this may obstruct that. “There is more to come about a lot of members of Parliament if I am to believe the calls I am getting,” she says. Jim Anderton says credibility is easy to lose. Who else could be minister? Even myself says Clark. However she wants Samuels to go of his own accord. Samuels is expected to decide to depart tonight when he visits the Beehive after attending a Maori caucus meeting. This story has moved very quickly tonight. Other stories have been circulating today that have not been confirmed and the PM says she has asked for assurances they are not true. The Maori caucus is meeting now. There are accusations that some MPs now want Dover Samuels job. The full caucus discussed it today too for some time but was not split on racial lines. Today on Radio Dover Samuels said that everybody else should put their moral conduct in public if they are to criticise him.

FOUR LETTERS MAKE MAP: ACTG put together spells HUMAN. As ambitious as the moon-landing as the Atomic Bomb. The map is long. It is 3.2 billion letters or 100,000 pages. The map will have implications for everything. Presidents and PMs dream of making announcements like this. A discovery that surpasses the discovery of anti-biotics, says Tony Blair. There is the potential to reduce cancer deaths to zero within our lifetime says a researcher. Doctors say they hope to be able to use gene-based medications. Biotech companies have been patenting genes. But that raises ethical questions. Designer babies. Discrimination in employment etc. Theoretically scientists could even remove the gene that makes you age say some. The DNA map could help us control our destiny more and ever before.

GENOME REACTION: Auckland researchers have been watching the map being drawn. A number of groups are using information from this database. There are groups working in lots of fields. In understanding diseases you can start to design new therapies based on the “molecules that go wrong” says a researcher. Another Auckland company is trying to make wood more woody with gene mapping technology.

MUGABE ELECTION: Latest results still show Mugabe ahead 51 to 48 seats but the Opposition is celebrating anyway. In some districts it is a rout to the MDC opposition says a candidate. Foreign observes say they were not free and fair elections citing the violence and intimidation in the pre-election phase. Several more opposition supporters injured this morning as violence continues. Celebrations this evening could be followed by revenge attacks however.

MILITARY TO GIVE SPEIGHT ULTIMATUM: Speight drinks Kava with visitors as soldiers erect more defences around the Parliamentary Compound. Speight will be given an ultimatum in a meeting tonight reports say. He will be asked to sign the political accord, agreed to before the weekend, or else the Military will appoint a new government anyway. Speculation mounts that a rescue mission might be undertaken by the Military. Former SAS Colonel Ligari, commander of the rebel troops in Fiji, speaks to media and says that he does not expect an attack.

FIRE RISKS: In the wake of the back-packers fire in Australia the NZ Fire Service is warning that some NZ hostels are also ill-equipped for dealing with fires. Backpackers owner says it is the responsibility of the Fire Service to enforce the rules. Fire Service replies that it will check as many hostels as it can but that backpackers need to be careful themselves.

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