Councillor says New Plymouth Mayor walking away following racial hate was 'sadly predictable'

A New Plymouth councillor has said the racial abuse which forced the city's mayor to not seek re-election is "sadly predictable".

New Plymouth councillor George Wood told ONE News Andrew Judd's decision was "bitter sweet".

The New Plymouth Mayor last night announced on Seven Sharp he will not seek re-election after being harassed and abused for supporting local Maori.

"He [is] a good man - he's found the price of trying to represent the community too high," Mr Wood said.

He said the way Mr Judd was treated by fellow councillors and members of the community was "wrong" and "sadly predictable".

Mr Judd said he has been spat on by a woman in a supermarket while with his children.

Mr Judd, who admitted he is also a "recovering racist", said: "I'm not seeking re-election, no, as much as I want to, I know it will be used as a fight to hurt us further."

"We need to look after each other, we need to look after our indigenous people, if we can't do that how on earth are we going to grow and become this multicultural country we say we are going to be."

Andrew Judd says people attacked him in supermarkets in front of his children over his policies – and it was just too much. Source: 1 NEWS

Reserve Bank bans MediaWorks from press conferences after OCR leak

A turbulent week for MediaWorks has just got worse.

The Reserve Bank has banned journalists from MediaWorks from attending any of its press conferences after one of its Newshub reporters leaked the March 10 Official Cash Rate decision. 

They sent the decision that the rate was coming down back to the newsroom, where someone passed it on to a blogger.

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler announced that the bank was ending its practice of having embargoed lock-ups for media ahead of its releases, because of the leak.

Weldon has seen a flood of talent leave the broadcaster since he joined the company in 2014. Source: 1 NEWS

Today, the bank announced Newshub would no longer welcome at its press conferences.

Earlier this week, MediaWorks' chief executive Mark Weldon resigned.

His departure followed the resignation of star presenter Hilary Barry.

Mediaworks signage Source: 1 NEWS


Man who abducted, assaulted and dumped school girl on road in Palmerston North to be sentenced

The man who pleaded guilty to abducting and assaulting a five-year-old girl will have his sentencing transferred to the High Court at Palmerston North.

Brendan Henson, 46, briefly appeared in the district court today on two charges of indecent assault and one charge of abduction with intent to have sexual connection.

Family and friends of the girl, whose identity is suppressed, were in the court's public gallery.

In February, the police launched a large-scale manhunt after Henson snatched the five-year-old from a Palmerston North street as she was walking to school.

Two hours later, local Bill Gilliland found the girl in a distressed state dumped on the side of the road at the other end of town.

Henson has been remanded in custody and will reappear for sentencing on July 8.