- News Feature : Blue Charter action group makes strides toward tackling ocean acidification [21/02/2019 - New Zealand]
- News Feature : China’s military seeks new islands to conquer [21/02/2019 - United States]
- Business News : EU blacklisting criterias under the miscroscope: Samoa Central Bank [21/02/2019 - Samoa]
- Business News : $50 billion for 20-Year Plan for development in Fiji [21/02/2019 - Fiji]
- News : Four former PMs in Solomon Islands in the race [21/02/2019 - Solomon Islands]
- News : Five Solomon Islands political parties exclude women [21/02/2019 - Solomon Islands]
- News Feature : Prepare now for accelerating climate threats, military officials warn [21/02/2019 - Netherlands]
- News : Fees could see lower candidate numbers - Solomon Islands electoral office [21/02/2019 - Solomon Islands]
- News : Fijian government welcomes Multinational Observer Group report on election [21/02/2019 - Fiji]
- News : Fiji women MPs urged put differences aside to address 'big issues' [21/02/2019 - New Zealand]
- News : Barak Sope calls for Lini compensation, not to sale of Vanuatu passport [21/02/2019 - Vanuatu]
- News : Rat poison discovered in cocaine and methamphetamine mix: Fiji Police Commissioner [21/02/2019 - Fiji]
- Sponsored : Oceania National Olympic Committees (ONOC)
Aid from New Zealand to Pacific tsunami victims was stalled for more than a week by a tender process, leaving Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully “stunned” and “disappointed”.
As a result, the Government is setting up two new multimillion-dollar funds to speed up disaster relief.
Mr McCully told the foreign affairs and trade select committee this week that he was disappointed a time-consuming tender process was needed before money could be allocated to aid agencies after the Pacific earthquake and tsunami last September.
“I was stunned after the Pacific tsunami that we had to go through a short-form tender process to distribute funds that needed to be allocated within hours,” Mr McCully said.
A magnitude 8.3 earthquake triggered the tsunami that killed 180 people in American Samoa, Samoa and Tonga on September 29.
Aid agency (NGO) funding for reconstruction work in Samoa was not made final till 08 October.
Mr McCully said the Government was setting up a new humanitarian response fund to replace a similar fund worth $5m. A further $21m fund, known as the Koha fund, would also be replaced with a sustainable development fund. The money would be reallocated from existing spending, but he wanted to increase the amount.
He told the committee he wanted the Government to do more of its aid through NGOs.
The Government has cut about $1m from the budget of the Council for International Development, which allocated funding to NGOs. The council is restructuring and is suspending its training, policy and research work.
Labour MP Phil Twyford said the cut to CID funding had “sent a rather alarming signal” to NGOs. But Mr McCully said more money needed to be allocated to people in need “rather than to an entity in New Zealand that might be seen as a political lobby group”.
SOURCE: STUFF NZ/PACNEWS
Pacific Islands News Association
Who & What is PINA?
International News Safety Institute (INSI)
Media Helping Media