Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Minister Releases Report

Immigration Minister Lianne Dalziel is today releasing a report into the attempted removal of a 21-year-old Samoan woman and her 10-year-old cousin.

Lianne Dalziel said the report highlighted gross inaccuracies in the New Zealand Herald article (11 June 2001) which reported on the attempted removal of Seneuefa Tilo, 21, and Cristine Tilo, aged 10.

1. The article quoted lawyer Alex Hope as saying that Cristine was taken screaming from a Hamilton house.

"Wrong. At no time was Cristine taken screaming from the house - in fact, she remained at the house with an adult, after Seneuefa had been taken to the police station for her interview. She was later placed into Child Youth and Family Services care until she was taken to meet up with Seneuefa for the journey to Auckland Airport at about 3.30pm. She shed a few tears when bidding farewell to relatives - an entirely normal reaction to the situation," the Minister said.

"The allegation that she was taken screaming from her home is totally false."

2. The newspaper claimed that Cristine was placed in a police cell.

"Wrong. She was NEVER put in a police cell - she remained at the house until she could be placed into Child, Youth and Family Service care. She then travelled to the Hamilton Police Station, where Seneuefa was picked up and they said their goodbyes to family. Both Seneuefa and Cristine were taken to the Auckland Airport police base where they were kept in the waiting room."

3. The article claimed that the NZIS did not make inquiries into the arrangements for Cristine's care in Samoa

"Wrong. The NZIS asked Seneuefa where they would live in Samoa, and she said they would return to an aunt and uncle with whom the pair had lived with for four years until they left for New Zealand."

There are other points, which are worth making in relation to this removal attempt.

- Information provided by Seneuefa in her application to extend her visit to New Zealand, stated that Cristine was visiting New Zealand as her dependent.

- Cristine's relatives initially did not provide evidence of her adoptive parents in New Zealand. This was provided later.

- During the six months that Seneuefa and Cristine were in New Zealand, neither of them sought residence on the basis of their family connections. Cristine's adoptive parents never applied to have Cristine recognised as a member of their family by applying for residence on her behalf.

- NZIS had already decided not to remove Cristine, before the High Court injunction that also stopped the removal of Seneuefa.

"It's easy to second-guess decisions after they are made with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight. However, the production of the Samoan adoption certificate would probably have halted the process, if there had been an explanation from the adoptive parents as to why they had left Cristine in Samoa four years before and, why she travelled to New Zealand as Seneuefa's dependent.

"None of this would have halted Seneuefa's removal.

"I am satisfied with the report. I believe we've come a long way to improve the relationship between the Service and the Pacific communities. In fact, two days before this incident, we formalised this with the hand over of the Pacific Strategy, which was developed over 12 months, to the NZIS management.

"I am very disappointed that Mr Hope passed on unsubstantiated information which the Herald should have checked. I am also disappointed that the Herald presented a story that caused unnecessary concern among the Samoan community. In the interests of presenting a fair and balanced report of this matter, I look forward to the Herald's correction of its original story."

Ends


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop 3.0: How You Can Help Scoop’s Evolution

Entering into its third decade of operation, the Scoop news ecosystem is set to undergo another phase of transformation and evolution.

We have big plans for 2018 as we look to expand our public interest journalism coverage, upgrade our publishing infrastructure and offer even more valuable business tools to commercial users of Scoop. More>>

 
 

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>

ALSO:

Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>

ALSO:

Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>

ALSO:

Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>

ALSO:

United Future History: "All Good Things Must End"

'We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 15 years, working alongside the government of the day, both National and Labour.' Mr Light told members on Monday. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Outcome, And The Hobbit Law

Somehow the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has come lurching back from the dead – and as predicted in this column last week, the member countries gathered in Vietnam have announced a deal in broad principle, shunted aside until a later date the stuff on which they don’t agree, and declared victory. More>>

Agreeing To Differ: Greens Maintain Opposition To TPPA
“The Green Party has long opposed the TPPA. The new proposed deal, which came out of the weekend’s talks, still contains key ISDS concessions to corporations that put our democracy at risk, so our position remains the same,” said Green Party trade spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman. More>>

ALSO:

Monitoring Report: A New Chapter For Children’s Rights In New Zealand?

The Children’s Commissioner is calling on the country to embrace children’s rights to ensure their overall well-being. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election