Stamps featuring modern Te Reo Maori words being rolled out in bid to highlight living language

A brand new set of postage stamps is being rolled out today featuring Te Reo Maori words that look to highlight the modern Maori language.

The release comes just before the start of Maori Language Week, which begins on Monday.

Chairman of the Maori Language Commission Dr Wayne Ngata hopes the stamps will show people that Te Reo Maori is a living language that changes with the times.

"If your language doesn't adapt with the modern world it gets lost in time," Dr Ngata told TVNZ1's Breakfast today.

The stamps highlight Te Reo Maori words for things like text, Wi-Fi and computer.

For example, the Te Reo Maori word for computer is rorohiko, which translated into English literally means electric brain.

Dr Ngata outlined his hopes for the new stamps, saying: "I hope people will pronounce them, and have a greater appreciation that the Maori language is a part of our country, our business and our lives."

The Te Reo Maori word for computer is rorohiko, which translated into English literally means electric brain. Source: Breakfast

Medical specialists say elective surgery boost promise will lead to even more 'overstretched workforce'

The Association of Salaried Medical Specialists says Health Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman's election promise of boosting elective surgeries per year will only lead to an even more overworked medical sector.

Dr Coleman said there are currently about 174,000 elective surgeries performed across the country per year, but additional funding of $30 million per year over the next four years would increase that to 200,000.

Ian Powell, speaking this morning to TVNZ1's Breakfast, said about half of New Zealand's specialist medical staff are already burnt out from high work load in operating theatres "like a factory", and a boost in the drive for numbers will only make that worse.

"The system copes despite that - but it is not a good state of affairs," Mr Powell said.

Mr Powell said that, in a system which is "all about numbers", it was likely that less-complicated elective surgeries would be prioritised over other necessary operations, leading to "perverse outcomes".

Overall, he said the promise was "additional work for an overstretched workforce" and that New Zealand's priority should be on supporting those specialists, rather than pushing more work through them.

"That's what any incoming government should be focused on."

Ian Powell says the increase in number will only lead to more burnout in the medical workforce. Source: Breakfast


Watch: Huge plumes of smoke billow from top of Wellington building

Cordons have been put in place in the Wellington CBD after thick black smoke began billowing from the Willeston Centre. Source: Supplied