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GCSB Head, Ian Fletcher resigns

Written By: - Date published: 1:49 pm, January 13th, 2015 - 78 comments
Categories: Ethics, john key, law, Politics, Spying - Tags:

For family reasons he is stepping down… Nothing to see here says Chris Finlayson, great guy who did a great job

Of far more importance is the arrival in yesterdays post of speeding fines for national’s supporters. Woodhouse is moving quickly to say the enforcement is ambiguous. Ron Marks thinks it is the most important thing facing Kiwis…

Speed limit set by law is 100KM. I dont care what the police said, anyone doing more than that is right to be fined. Why is it even an issue? A human right to drive in excess of the speed limit?

UPDATE

Little said the Mr Fletcher’s resignation came as a surprise.

He had met with the GCSB boss before Christmas and said he appeared to be “on top of his job” and speaking about the future of the agency.

He questioned whether Mr Fletcher had been told of “something disagreeable” in the upcoming review of the security agencies and had left as a result.

“A lot of things are put down to family reasons,” Mr Little said.

“He certainly seemed to be well in control and very keen on the job just before Christmas. Now he’s going, and there’s reference to the review coming up.

“It would be helpful if the Government explained exactly what they have in mind for the review because that seems to be a big feature of the circumstances around Ian Fletcher’s resignation.”

Mr Little said Mr Fletcher’s three-year tenure had been a “rocky road” but noted that he had inherited some of the GCSB’s more problematic matters such as the fallout from the Kim Dotcom raid.

 

 

 

 

78 comments on “GCSB Head, Ian Fletcher resigns”

  1. Ad 1

    The review of the intelligence services will be one of the biggest games in Wellington this year. As Bowalley Road put it: The Deep State Rises.

    Fletchers’ resignation gives his Minister and PM a chance to restructure or root out all those who don’t agree with the restructure that inevitably follows the full review .

    A generous PM wanting to take the skin out of the review would offer a Senate-style joint successor confirmation across the House.

    Stepping back, government’s task will be to compartmentalise and segment the review away from current themes about ‘freedom of expression’, ‘rights to privacy’, and ‘impartiality of the public service’. Our job will be the reverse of that, in particular enabling Parties to have effective attack-lines.

    We could also consider gearing up to do a submission from TS. If we are game.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      A crowd-sourced submission. Good idea.

    • tracey 1.2

      It would be politically astute to invite Labour into a decision about appointment but even that is fraught.

      I am keen to do a submission…

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2.1

        Suggestions for consideration: GCSB level spying to be defined as a military activity, with the implicit understanding that deploying military resources against the civilian population is a war crime.

        • Ad 1.2.1.1

          The structural step would then be to merge GCSB into NZDefence as another wing:

          – Army
          – Navy
          – Airforce
          – Online Defence

          • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2.1.1.1

            It’s a complex issue – what do we do about the NSA’s reach, for example – or the potential for John Key to take corporate bribes*. That’s why getting the founding principles right is so important.

            *and what about Russel’s links to the Dalai Lama? 😈

            • Ad 1.2.1.1.1.1

              This restructure won’t be challenging our membership of 5 Eyes.

              Corporate bribes would be a matter for the Police and SFO.

              I believe we should redefine and constrain the roles of the intelligence agencies – and we can debate exactly what those are from the current legislative provisions.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                By definition, any review of our spying policy affects, and therefore challenges, our membership. Otherwise what good is our membership in the first place?

                • Ad

                  Let’s wait until the Terms of Reference come out, but I would be highly surprised if a review of membership was on them.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Are you deliberately missing the point?

                    Our four mates may see our review in an entirely different light. I hope they do, and I hope we can explain to them that the course we (the five of us) are on is covered in wrongsauce, in time to change trajectory.

                    However, I expect that we’ll do nothing of the sort, on account of being paid to look the other way, or something.

        • Colonial Rawshark 1.2.1.2

          GCSB level spying to be defined as a military activity, with the implicit understanding that deploying military resources against the civilian population is a war crime.

          And deploying the GCSB against foreign powers or foreign diplomats would then be considered an act of military aggression?

          • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2.1.2.1

            Not if you consider military philosophy: the purpose of spying is to avoid or minimise bloodshed.

            • Ad 1.2.1.2.1.1

              The attack by an ISIS affiliate upon the USDF Twitter and Youtube accounts yesterday being the most recent example.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Warmongers do their best to sow fear in any context. The Caliph too.

              • tracey

                is that proven? I only ask cos there was a report following the US pointing the finger at N Korea, that a disgruntled sony employee hacked Sony?

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  The attack Ad refers to is one against the US army by ISIL. Publishing soldiers’ home addresses and threatening them (and obviously their families).

                  The Caliph, like any fearmonger, has far less reach than he thinks he does. Wingnuts flock together and share their chains, if you like.

        • Naturesong 1.2.1.3

          The GCSB is already a military institutiuon.

  2. adam 2

    Are not race tracks easy to hire – Sorry link is for the car heads – with money.

    http://www.tauporacetrack.co.nz/the-tracks

    http://www.hamptondowns.com/pages/187/track-days.htm

    If you got caught, you pays ya fine like everyone else, or are we a tin-pot semi royal worshiping democracy? Sorry to see you go Ian, must say as a public servant it seems you failed of the free and frank advice part in you job contract/obligation.

  3. Colonial Rawshark 3

    No doubt Ian Fletcher will be in another top six-figure job within 6 months, also for family reasons. See if he doesn’t join one of the other FVEY outfits, for instance, or one of the private contractors.

  4. Skinny 4

    Fletcher would be cursing the day he got played for a patsy by honest John Key. There is a lot more to come about this resignation. I would expect a whistle blower to come out, totally sick of the deceit. Panicked phone calls between Hawaii & National Party spin department in damage control.

    Winston Peters claims during the rushed GCSB bill of spy’s, lies and alibi’s is coming back to haunt crap happy Key.

    • tracey 4.1

      I wonder. I imagined that Key talked clearly with Fletcher before later asking him to apply about just want he wanted BUT Key is a serial liar, so why not dupe Fletcher too? Will Fletcher be a Tucker or not? Will have signed that secrecy thingy though which protects EVERYTHING

      • Anne 4.1.1

        The Herald take on the “surprise” resignation.

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11385827

        Excerpt from Andrew Little’s comments:

        Labour leader Andrew Little said Mr Fletcher’s resignation came as a surprise.

        He had met with the GCSB boss before Christmas and said he appeared to be “on top of his job” and speaking about the future of the agency.

        He questioned whether Mr Fletcher had been told of “something disagreeable” in the upcoming review of the security agencies and had left as a result.

        “A lot of things are put down to family reasons,” Mr Little said.

        Little swiftly on the attack. Good on him.

      • Skinny 4.1.2

        A guy like Fletcher can command a lot more money for less hassle in Australia. When you think about the botched Dotcom raid and illegal spying.

        Then you add the sketchy conduct by Jason Ede, where John Key denies any knowledge of the unethical and highly likely illegal skullduggery goings on, is it little wonder Fletcher wants out with his reputation intact. It appears being tarred with guilty by association isn’t what he signed up for. Funny Finlayson has been left with his arse flapping in the wind, no one believes ‘family reasons’ for his resignation. Especially a hasty exist in February. Getting out while the goings good I’d say.

        • Ffloyd 4.1.2.1

          I agree with you Skinny. Bet he never got the full info on what would be expected of him. He must have been going flat out to cover key’s R’s on the run up to the election. If he has done it because of integrity, good on him. They’ll be spinning in Hawaii!!!

          • Chooky 4.1.2.1.1

            yes interesting….Fletcher has always given me the impression of being a fairly decent guy…could be quite wrong of course…but there are decent guys in the secret service …Edward Snowden was one

  5. coaster 5

    On the speed limit, its 100km per hour, if you are caught over that the police have a right to issue a ticket. There is a tolerance, margin of error that needs to be in place, but that doesnt make the speed limit higher than 100km per hour.

    on the ian fletcher thing, could he actually be resigning for family reasons?

    • tracey 5.1

      On speeding – agree 100%. Makes you think some well heeled NZF and NATS got some speeding tickets and want a different set of rules… mind you Woodhouse has been quick to back them, so must be a BIG constituency

      On Fletcher – of course he could be, and Little is being mischievious by suggesting “family” reasons” covers a multitude of scenarios…

    • Colonial Rawshark 5.2

      on the ian fletcher thing, could he actually be resigning for family reasons?

      The fact that no real explanation has been given has opened up questions. In contrast, when David Cunliffe pulled out of the leadership race late last year, news reports were quite specific on the “family reasons” that were involved.

    • gsays 5.3

      about the speeding thing, i agree it is a limit not a target.
      u go over you bear the consequences.

      this from a regular motorcyclist.

      the bit that stinks about this is mr woodhouse and having a crack at the constabulary for their message ref speeding.
      did he do this coz some polling said enough joe (and joanne) kiwi didnt like what the police were up to?

      i dont know about y’all but i want my leaders to aspire to higher things (like the law), rather than take their cues from how the sheeple react.

      • Murray Rawshark 5.3.1

        Yep, it could be looked at as more political influence on ngati poaka. I thought they were supposed to be independent, but given the name of the IPCA, they may not have a great understanding of the concept.

  6. Anne 6

    Nothing much to go on yet, but I do wonder sometimes if Dr Warren Tucker was made a scapegoat for the Goff/SIS/Slater affair and whether something similar is about to happen to Fletcher and he knows it.

    We’ll know one way or the other within the next little while.

    • tracey 6.1

      signing the secrecy stuff gags them… on ALL things.

    • politikiwi 6.2

      That’s a very astute observation, actually: Fletcher will know **exactly** what went on with the Goff thing and may be uncomfortable with the extent to which Tucker was hung out to dry. And looking down the barrel of a review, a wise person might think better than to wait around for a similar fate.

  7. Bea Brown 7

    Of course he might just have been offered a better job back in Australia.

  8. Clemgeopin 8

    ‘Family reasons?’ I am skeptical.

    Wouldn’t it be cool, highly patriotic and a great service if Fletcher were to become a conscientious whistle blower and spilled all the dirty evil beans indulged in by this dodgy Government and the GCSB?

  9. tracey 9

    His parting tome can be found here…

    http://www.gcsb.govt.nz/assets/GSCB-NZISM/NZISM-2014-November-Release.pdf

    NZ Information Security Manual
    by Ian Fletcher
    November 2014

    It appears this is the culmination of what he was “hired” to do.

    • Clemgeopin 9.1

      What is a ‘parting tome’?

      Or did you mean, tomb? Like in …’Beside buddy Key, here lies Fletcher’?

      [Also, your link is dead]

      • tracey 9.1.1

        A tome is

        ” a book, especially a large, heavy, scholarly one.
        “a weighty tome”
        synonyms: volume, book, work, opus, writing, publication, title

        Origin
        early 16th century (denoting one volume of a larger work): from French, via Latin from Greek tomos ‘section, roll of papyrus, volume’; related to temnein ‘to cut’.
        -tome

        Link is live for me, it is to webbased pdf?

        • McFlock 9.1.1.1

          It’s to a pdf file, it opens in a browser only if the browser has a pdf-viewer plugin.

          It’s a fairly large file (my grunty work machine took a wee while to download and open it), so that might explain why it looks dead to clem: it’s taking ages to download and open the doc.

  10. BLiP 10

    The lies John Key has told about New Zealand’s spy agencies and Ian Fletcher . . .

    Iain Rennie came to me and recommended Fletcher for the GCSB job

    I told Cabinet that I knew Ian Fletcher

    I forgot that after I scrapped the shortlist for GCSB job I phoned a life-long friend to tell him to apply for the position

    I told Iain Rennie I would contact Fletcher

    I haven’t seen Ian Fletcher in a long time.

    I did not mislead the House (13)

    I have no reason to doubt at this stage that Peter Dunne did not leak the GCSB report

    I called directory service to get Ian Fletcher’s number

    the new legislation narrows the scope of the GCSB

    the GCSB has been prevented from carrying out its functions because of the law governing its functions

    because the opposition is opposed the GCSB law ammendments, parliamentary urgency is required

    the increasing number of cyber intrusions which I can’t detail or discuss prove that the GCSB laws need to be extended to protect prive enterprise

    it was always the intent of the GCSB Act to be able to spy on New Zealanders on behalf of the SIS and police

    National Ltd™ is not explanding the activities of the GCSB with this new law

    cyber terrorists have attempted to gain access to information about weapons of mass destruction held on New Zealand computers

    the law which says the GCSB cannot spy on New Zealanders is not clear

    it totally incorrect that the Government effectively through GCSB will be able to wholesale spy on New Zealanders

    we self identified that there was a problem with the GCSB spying on Kim Dotcom

    the illegal spying on Kim Dotcom was an isolated incident

    The advice I have had in 4 years as a Minister is that in no way ever has there been an indication of unlawful spying

    the Ministerial Warrant signed by Bill English did not cover anything up

    I wasn’t briefed about the raid on Kim Dotcom’s home.

    first I heard I heard about Kim Dotcom was on 19 January 2012

    first I heard about the illegal spying on Kim Dotcom was in 17 September 2012

    I did not mislead the House (14)

    I won’t be discussing Kim Dotcom during my Hollywood visit.

    The Human Rights Commission couldn’t get its submission on the GCSB legislation in on time.

    it would cost too much to for the police and SIS to carry out the spying on New Zealanders that this new legislation will permit

    critics of the GCSB legislation, including the Law Society, the Human Rights Commission, and the Privacy Commission, are all uninformed

    no, I did not mislead the House (15)

    I do not know how Mr Henry is conducting the Enquiry

    no, I did not mislead the House (16)

    the Henry Enquiry had permission to view Ministers’ emails

    no, I did not mislead the House (??)

    we do not spy on journalists

    the passing of phone records to the Henry Enquiry was an error on the part of a contractor

    I wasn’t aware that my own Chief of Staff was instructing Parliamentary Services to hand over information concerning journalist Andrea Vance

    National Ltd™ has never tried to impinge on the role of the media

    I had nothing to do with information on a journalist being handed over to the inquiry into the leaking of the GCSB report

    the terms of the enquiry made it clear to everyone that it was only the phone records of parliamentary staff and ministers that were to be provided

    • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1

      …coming home to roost.

      No. Being hidden from immediate scrutiny.

    • tracey 10.2

      SIGH

    • adam 10.3

      Again it’s a long list…

      Welcome to NZ, a lying PM and a corporatocracy very full of itself – of late.

      • tracey 10.3.1

        but…but…but… he is popular and stuff so it cant be bad

        • aerobubble 10.3.1.1

          Popular for only so long as he does not look like a waste of space, and so by association voters feel vindicated for voting for him. Thats why its so telling, that Key hired a bureaucrat without militrary or spy experience, and could not fathom why highly intelligent spooks ran rings round his office, exposing Key to years of security crisises, data leaks, dot com, Collins, everyone was having a laugh at Key for leaving our security services open to abuse. And so by associatihe cabinet, the national party and suppose bastions of good decision making National voters. Key, forced out of his role as intelligence minster, wow, he really f.up. How does a PM do that, paryially sack himself from the serious sp ministry.

    • gsays 10.4

      jeez blip i would not want to get in your bad books.

      thanx heaps for the work in compiling the list (catalogue) of inconsistencies.
      it will be refered to many times by myself.

      • Chooky 10.4.1

        imagine being BLip’s partner or kids …it would be bloody scarey having all your lies/fibs/half truths /exaggerations/falsehoods / dissemblings documented …honesty would definitely be the best policy

        ….but the politicians deserve BLip!…and BLip does us all a great service…BLip would make a great intelligence analyst…maybe BLip should apply for whats- his- name’s job

        • Clemgeopin 10.4.1.1

          There is a vacancy at the GCSB. Ideal for BLiP!
          May be he should include his invaluable great list and apply for the job, just for fun, to see what happens!

    • You’re a national treasure, BLiP.

    • mickysavage 10.6

      Cheers BLiP. Please keep it up!

    • hoom 10.7

      I hate these lists.
      I love that you make them, but hate that Key is such a crook they exist.

      You should get them up on a website somewhere so they can be more easily tracked/pointed to.

    • Treetop 10.8

      I am sure that BLip could add to the list were he to have seen Fletcher on Campbell Live in the last quarter of 2014.

  11. Eralc 11

    It is for family reasons. Give him some space.

    • Colonial Rawshark 11.1

      You’re calling on reserves of trust and goodwill that he and his organisation never built or cared about building.

    • tricledrown 11.2

      Eralacky After all the controversy around Dirty Politics and KDC raids and his Dodgy fastracked appointment!
      Give me a break,it means he won’t have to answer questions about corrupting the GSCB by John Key for political gain by his childhood buddy who Key denied maintaining a friendship!

    • Tracey 11.3

      source/link?

      “give him a break”? What? he is not even reading here is he?

  12. ghostwhowalksnz 12

    My theory is that he missed out on the top job at Foreign Affairs that we know is open( the current head is going to the TAB)
    I bet he heard the result just before Xmas, and thought it over and handed in his resignation in New year.

    Normally head of GCSB is seen as an end of career job, but Fletcher isnt finished yet and wanted bigger and better things. He didnt leave his Queensland job to go to a dead end in Wellington.
    As well all previous heads of GCSB reported directly to PM, but Key is too lazy for that and was fobbed off on to his minions. Now its reporting to a middle ranked minister. In public service terms this is kiss of death, so time to go upwards or get out.

    Now the pretence of GCSB not spying on NZ citizens has been shown as a big lie, its likely to be folded into some sort of super agency ( its nationals DNA to create bureaucratic monsters)

  13. Papa tuanuku 13

    I’m finding Tracey’s posts a little incoherent. A bit of time on editing please

  14. Truth Will Out 14

    It appears that the Prime Sinister is running out of friends, and corners to hide in…

    • Sable 14.1

      Nice notion but I doubt that is what is happening in this case. Indeed even if Keys is forced out and he might be in time, the hydra that is National will just grow another head..

  15. Sable 15

    Why do we even have a GCSB or for that matter foreign intelligence services such as the NSA and CIA in NZ (anyone who does not think they are here is fooling themselves)?

    More than anything else this threatens not only human rights but also the sovereignty of this country by placing our freedoms in the hands of foreign interests.

  16. Clemgeopin 16

    Could be leaving for conscience driven family reasons of distressed families who were/are being spied on unethically, unfairly and illegally! That is perhaps what he enigmatically really meant by the phrase, ‘family reasons’!

    • Chooky 16.1

      @ Clemgeopin….very good rationale….and excellent reason for resigning

      ….i wonder what Winnie’s sources are telling him

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  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    4 days ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    4 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    4 days ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    4 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    5 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    5 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    5 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    6 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    6 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    7 days ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    1 week ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    1 week ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    1 week ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    1 week ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    1 week ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago

  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
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  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
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  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
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  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
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    2 weeks ago