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National Radio Midday Report

Cancer Waiting – Christine Rankin – Post Board – Iwi Liason – OCR – Fiji Murders – Russian Crash – Merger Denied – School Suspensions – Enza – Science Review

CANCER WAITING: More cancer patients in Auckland may need radical surgery because they had to wait too long for radiation treatment at Auckland Hospital. The CEO of Auckland Cancer Society says the long waiting times are a disgrace.

CHRISTINE RANKIN: Dame Margaret Beazley told the Employment Court at the Christine Rankin case that personal attacks and threats of violence on heads of government departments come with the territory. Beazly said she’d had bullets in the mail, effigies burned, and threats of gang rape. Beazley said she currently has police protection.

POST BOARD: SOEs Minister Mark Burton is to make a public statement this afternoon on how splits in the NZ Post board are to be mended. Board director Ross Armstrong are to be at the press conference. Political Editor Al Morrison says that suggests a compromise solution that avoids board sackings has been reached.

IWI LIASON: The Fire Service is appointing an iwi liaison officer in Northland in an attempt to bring down the death toll from fires in poor rural Maori homes.

OCR: Reserve Bank Governor Don Brash has resisted calls to cut the key benchmark interest rate, the Official Cash Rate, leaving it at 5.75 percent. He has already cut the rate by three-quarters of a percent this year.

FIJI MURDERS: Fiji police are hunting for an alleged drug dealer who they suspect was involved in the murder of Fiji Red Cross director John Scott and his New Zealand partner Gregory Scrivener.

RUSSION CRASH: Authorities in Moscow have confirmed there were no survivors among the 143 people on the airliner that went down in Siberia.

MERGER DENIED: The European Union decision to block what would have been the world’s biggest industrial merger, between General Electric and Honeywell, has been greeted with dismay in the United States. The Bush administration has called for talks on establishing common rules.

SCHOOL SUSPENSIONS: There are fears a new educational advocacy service being set up to cut suspensions and expulsions may increase the workload for schools.

ENZA: The pip-fruit grower lobby group says efforts by Enza to recoup money lost on currency markets is leaving growers out of pocket.

SCIENCE REVIEW: The Association of Polytechnics says a decision by Parliament’s Education and Science Select Committee to review the tertiary sector is pointless.

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