English questions Ardern's motives over Manus Island refugee resettlement offer - 'What you're seeing is a bit of a show piece'

National Party leader Bill English has this morning suggested "a bit of respect" is in order from Jacinda Ardern in her persistent offer to resettle 150 refugees from Australia's Manus Island offshore detention centre.

The comments from Mr English came as the New Zealand Prime Minister is set to repeat her offer to take 150 refugees from Ausralia's Manus and Nauru detention centres when she meets Malcolm Turnbull on the sidelines of the East Asia Summit in the Philippines this week.

"Look I think she knows full well the Australians would have taken up the offer if they thought it was going to work for them," Mr English told TVNZ1's Breakfast today.

"She knows full well the Australian government is not going to take up the offer.

"I think what you're seeing is a bit of a show piece actually.

"It might work for the audience in New Zealand but I think she does need to show a bit of respect for the difficult situation Australia have with dealing with refugees, the hundreds of people who died when they did have a whole swarm of boats turning up in Australia." 

The National leader was asked why Malcolm Turnbull would stand by it's agreement for the US to resettle 1,250 refugees in its offshore detention centres, and not take up New Zealand's similar offer.

"The indications from Australia are, first, if the refugees come here they can then get entry back into Australia and they have worked very hard to close down the flow of boats and the large number of deaths that were occurring among the people on the boats that didn't make it.

"That's their issue, the point I'm simply making is the New Zeland Prime Minister knows they won't take up the offer, no Australain politician would take it up.

"And I think it's probably stretching the goodwill in the relationship of making a show of looking like she's trying to push them."   

Bill English says Jacinda Ardern is "pushing" Australia over the men in detention in PNG. Source: Breakfast



Man in critical condition after stabbing at property near Opotiki

A man has been hospitalised in a critical condition following a stabbing at a property near Opotiki, in the Bay of Plenty, this morning.

The man has been transported to Whakatāne Hospital after he was stabbed at an address on Waiotahe Valley Road, in Waiotahi, at 7.25am.

The people involved in the incident are known to each other, police say.

Police know the identity of the suspect and are working to locate him.

A scene examination is currently being carried out at the address.

Source: 1 NEWS


Live stream: Major water policy speech to give glimpse at Government’s approach to water regulation

Nanaia Mahuta will discuss storm water, drinking water and bottling. Source: 1 NEWS

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Person in critical condition after being hit by bus in Christchurch

One person’s been hospitalised in a critical condition after being hit by a bus in Christchurch this morning.

Emergency services were called to Main North Road in Redwood around 8am.

A police spokesperson says the road has been closed and motorists are being asked to follow the direction of emergency services.

A bus driver at the wheel.


'We were really excited' - hear the voices of some of the first New Zealand women to vote 125 years ago

Today marks the 125th anniversary of women’s suffrage in New Zealand, which made our small island the first self-governing nation to grant women the right to vote.

It wasn’t a smooth road, however, and although not as long or violent as other campaigns for the vote in the UK and US years later, Kiwi women faced their share of opposition.

A strong push for the vote began in the late 1870s when electoral bills were being put forward to Parliament which had clauses saying it gave women the right to vote, not just men.

But it was much earlier that a handful of women began advocating for voting rights for women.

“It was just a few maverick voices at that point, but it was being discussed,” says Victoria University's Professor Charlotte Macdonald.

The movement picked up steam when the Women’s Christian Temperance formed nationwide in New Zealand.

That’s when women started saying, “we want to change the politics in the places that we live”, says Professor Macdonald.

It wasn’t just for political equality, but for moral reform to protect women, she says.

“They were saying ‘we need to organise to get the vote because without that no matter what we do we’re just going to get cast aside’.”

From there, women began a much larger campaign which involved petitioning, public meetings, writing letters to the editor and working with sympathetic MPs.

A lot of their efforts failed, but the women tirelessly continued to work for equality in voting rights.

From 1886 to 1892, a series of petitions were presented to Parliament.

“Petitioning was the only way in which women, and people outside Parliament, could have their voice heard and the British suffrage campaign was petitioning at the same time so it’s a well-known technique,” says Otago University's Professor Barbara Brookes.

“It was also a really important educationally technique because if you’re going to sign a petition people usually explain to you what it’s about.”

Nearly 32,000 signatures were obtained from women across the country including many Māori women.

It was on September 19, 1893, following another petition and electoral bill passed in the House when Governor Lord Glasgow signed the bill into law and women granted the right to vote.

When election day finally comes in November 28, 1893, 82 per cent of women over the age of 21 turn out to vote.

This changed the course of women’s lives in New Zealand leading to many policy changes for women, female MP being elected to Parliament 40 years later and eventually three female prime ministers.

And take a brief look at the journey Kiwi women took to be granted the right to vote in NZ. Source: 1 NEWS