Prime Minister's new Chief Science Advisor announced by Jacinda Ardern

Auckland University's Professor Juliet Gerrard is the Prime Minister's new Chief Science Advisor.

Professor Juliet Gerrard.
Professor Juliet Gerrard. Source: The MacDiarmid Institute.

Jacinda Ardern confirmed the appointment today in a press conference.

She reiterated the importance of using science and facts to make policy decisions and acknowledged the work of National to establish the Chief Science Advisor role which was filled by Sir Peter Gluckman.

Professor Gerrard gained her Doctorate in chemistry and biological chemistry from Oxford University, and is a Professor of Biochemistry from the University of Auckland. 

"I am very much looking forward to connecting with a cross section of scientists from all types of institutions, especially emerging scientists," Professor Gerrard said in a statement. 

"New Zealanders owe Sir Peter Gluckman a great debt of gratitude for his tireless work as the country's first PM Chief Science Advisor and he will continue to make a contribution through his highly respected international and academic roles."

Photos: Farmland, roads and houses under water, sheep stranded as flooding hits Gisborne region

Just a week after many parts of the Gisborne region were flooded in torrential rain, a second deluge overnight has again laid already soaked farmland under several feet of water.

Widespread scenes of paddocks and houses in the Gisborne region totally flooded have been photographed today.

One local man, John Edwards, who lives between Gisborne city and Te Karaka, can be seen out in almost waist high water with his dogs.

Mr Edwards went out hoping to rescue some lambs from the floods.

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Local John Edwards trying to rescue lambs from the floods between Gisborne and Te Karaka. Source: 1 NEWS

Get 1NEWS' live updates on the weather conditions in the region this morning. 

John Edwards out with his dogs in flooded farmland between Gisborne and Te Karaka. Source: 1 NEWS

Source: 1 NEWS


Nicky Hager receives apology from police and 'substantial damages' over Dirty Politics investigation

The New Zealand Police have apologised to Dirty Politics author Nicky Hager from their 2014 investigation into the book and will pay damages and legal costs, a settlement document says. 

Mr Hager had his home raided in 2014 as part of the investigation, with the High Court ruling in 2015 the warrant used was "fundamentally unlawful". 

"As part of the settlement of Mr Hager's claims, the New Zealand Police wish to acknowledge the following breaches of Mr Hager's rights and to apologise for them," the document says. 

"Police also now accept and acknowledge that in certain respects the search warrant was overly broad and should have contained conditions to address concerns raised to protect journalistic privilege."

Mr Hager received an apology and payout from police for an 'unlawful' 2014 raid on his Wellington home. Source: 1 NEWS

The settlement document says police "accepted that they did not have reasonable grounds for the search, that they attempted to breach Mr Hager's journalistic privilege in multiple ways, and that they unlawfully obtained his private information from third parties including his bank".

"Police apologise unreservedly for these breaches of his rights."

Mr Hager is to receive substantial damages and also a substantial contribution to his legal fees. 

"This sends a vital message that people can share important information with journalists with confidence that their identities will be protected," Mr Hager said in the statement. 

Assistant Commissioner Richard Chambers released a statement to 1 NEWS which said: "Police confirm that an out of court settlement has been reached with Mr Nicky Hager regarding a search warrant executed on his property in 2014. Police acknowledge that the processes used to obtain the warrant and request other personal information about Mr Hager were unlawful, and have apologised to Mr Hager for this.

"The settlement includes costs and damages, details of which remain confidential between the parties. Police investigation processes have since been updated in consultation with the IPCA and the Privacy Commissioner."

The New Zealand police have apologised to Dirty Politics author Nicky Hager from their 2014 investigation into the book and will pay damages and legal costs. Source: 1 NEWS