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Sacked Health Board – Fiji Coup – Mataura Paper Mill – Auckland Pensioner Found Dead – Varroa Will Not Be Eradicated – Dam Buster’s Last Flight – Sacked Health Board

SACKED HEALTH BOARD: The Minister of Health has sacked Gisborne Health Board – late breaking story. (See bottom of this bulletin for full report.)

FIJI COUP: 18 hostages remain in captivity. Tears of joy for nine hostages released after eight weeks early this morning. First moments spent with family and in church this morning. Hostages find it hard to describe the emotion of their release. Under the cover of darkness nine hostages were handed over to the Red Cross. The hostages received a quick medical checkup on their release. Speight has promised to release the rest of the hostages within 24 hours. Elsewhere in Fiji the Turtle Island resort is evacuated following an uprising by land rights protestors. Today Speight seemed filled with emotion.

MATAURA PAPER MILL: 155 workers have today heard that their jobs have been shredded. The prospects for alternative employment are grim. Carter Holt Harvey says the plant has been losing money for four years. Over 120 years of paper production come to an end. The plant is the only one in the country producing fax paper. The plant tried to branch out into specialty paper with little success. CHH says there will be redundancy packages – some workers are planning for early retirement.

AUCKLAND PENSIONER FOUND DEAD: The third body found decomposed in a block of City Council flats in 18 months. The pensioner whose body was found today was last seen three months ago. This morning a lawnmower smelt a terrible smell coming from the flat. Police and Council officers entered the flat and found the body.

VARROA WILL NOT BE ERADICATED: The Government says it is not possible to wipe out the Varroa bee mite. The mites suck the blood out of bees. The mite has severe implications for NZ agriculture. Marian Hobbs says that while hearts wanted eradication heads said it was impossible. Now the disease has spread to the wild bee population there is no guarantee of success, say scientists. Beekeepers are despairing about how they will stay in business.

DAM BUSTER: A Kiwi flyer, George Hall, the last of the famous WWII Dam Buster pilots alive, has his ashes sprinkled form the air on Wellington’s south coast. He died aged 86. He had lots of adventure stories.

GISBORNE HEALTH BOARD SACKING: The Board has been cancelled following errors with thousands of prostrate cancer tests. The Health Minister says she has had enough of problems with Gisborne Hospital’s short comings. A machine was used incorrectly for 15 months. The Hospital says that there were two reviews of the hospitals programme which had not picked up the problem. The problem is the third major problem in Gisborne. Annette King says that she lost confidence in part because she had not been informed of the latest problem and had instead read it on the front page of the Dominion. Prostrate sufferers say they are horrified at the latest news.

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