Parliament

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

 

Medals returned to all New Zealanders

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Defence

21 October 2008


Medals returned to all New Zealanders

Defence Minister Phil Goff said an immensely important part of New Zealand’s heritage was today back where it belonged – on public display.

Mr Goff was in Waiouru today to mark the return of the 96 medals, including nine VCs and two George Crosses, stolen from the Army Memorial Museum on 2 December last year.

“Today is a significant day for all New Zealanders. The medals being returned are part of this nation’s taonga. Their loss would have been an incalculable cost to our nation’s heritage,” Phil Goff said.

“While keeping our medals safe, we want all New Zealanders to be able to view them as a proud part of this country’s history.

“These medals, and the stories behind them, are a vital legacy for us which should not be lost for future generations.

“To win the VC or the George Cross, the recipient must have demonstrated most conspicuous gallantry, or some daring or pre-eminent act of valour or self-sacrifice or extreme devotion to duty.

“Yet none of the men honoured here took credit for their medals, preferring instead to accept them on behalf of the men they fought alongside. This selflessness was matched by their wives, children and grandchildren who have sought nothing in return for making their family’s medals publicly available.

“Earlier this year, the same selflessness was demonstrated by Corporal Willie Apiata VC who donated his award for outstanding courage to be held by the New Zealand SAS Trust on behalf of the nation.

“Security for the medals has been significantly improved, here and at our other military museums,” Phil Goff said.

“The cabinets displaying the medals have been upgraded and a security shutter system has been installed in the Valour Alcove. The Museum’s doors and windows are also being strengthened, and external lighting upgraded.

“Once completed, the cost of the upgrade will be over $1.5 million, but it is an investment which is both necessary and worthwhile.”

Mr Goff paid tribute to the work of Detective Senior Sergeant Chris Bensemann and his team of up to 40 police officers and Environmental Science and Research staff who have invested over 15,000 hours in Operation Valour.

“The theft of these medals was a crime against the nation. It was important that they were returned undamaged but also that those responsible for the theft are held to account. I welcome the fact that charges have been brought against those alleged to have committed the crime.

“I also acknowledge those members of the public who helped the Police recover the medals, in particular Tom Sturgess who, along with Michael Ashcroft, provided the reward which helped insure that the medals were returned,” Mr Goff said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Populism’s Changing Of The Guard, Plus A Soul Music Playlist

The weekend’s Newshub/Reid Research poll results - Act up to 11.1%, National up 1% but still sitting at only 28.7%, Labour down to 43%, the Greens up to 8.5% - shows that the combined centre right vote is still languishing nearly 12 points behind the combined centre-left vote, 45 months after the last centre-right government was voted out... More>>



 
 


Finance: Finance Minister And RBNZ Governor Agree To Update MOU On Macro-prudential Policy

Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr have updated the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on macro-prudential policy to further protect the financial system and support the Government’s housing objectives... More>>

Government: Offers Formal Apology For Dawn Raids
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has today formally apologised to Pacific communities impacted by the Dawn Raids in the 1970s.

Between 1974 and 1976, a series of rigorous immigration policies were carried out that resulted in targeted raids on the homes of Pacific families... More>>


Government: Bill Introduced To Protect Against Conversion Practices

Legislation has been introduced to Parliament to protect against practices intended to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression... More>>

ALSO:




Human Rights Commission: Successive Governments Responsible For Massive Breaches Of The Right To A Decent Home

Te Kahu Tika Tangata / Human Rights Commission has today launched Framework Guidelines on the Right to a Decent Home in Aotearoa and announced that it will hold a national inquiry into housing... More>>



NZUS Council: Welcomes Nomination Of Senator Tom Udall As US Ambassador To NZ

The NZUS Council welcomes the nomination of Senator Tom Udall to the role of US Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, NZUS Council executive director Jordan Small said... More>>

BusinessNZ: Visa Extensions Welcomed
BusinessNZ has welcomed the extension of some critical skill visa durations and changes to immigration systems to speed processing. Chief Executive Kirk Hope says move acknowledges advocacy by the hospitality sector, the BusinessNZ Network and others, and comes not a moment too soon.... More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels