Checkpoint. 2001-07-20

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Questions are now being raised about why the Westland District Council has loaned 400-thousand dollars to a private logging company when most of the work is not based on the West Coast. The regions four district councils each got a share of the 120 million dollars given as compensation after the Government stopped native logging in the region's crown owned lands. The biggest loan so far has gone to a company, Forever Timber Ltd, set-up by former staff of state owned TImberlands, a local saw mill and a Christchurch specialist wood processor. They want to log 7- thousand cubic metres of native forest on private land in the nearby Tasman District, and promise 32 jobs, 13 of them on the coast. Joining us now is Westland's mayor John Drylie. LIVER
Joining us now is Gerry McSweeney, the President of Forest and Bird and a tourist operator on the West Coast. LIVER
[illegible] police who've launched a homicide inquiry after reports of a killing at local motel say they hope to know in the next few hours whether they do in fact have a body. Senior Sergeant Nigel Escott says yesterday a person rang them, claiming that a killing had taken place a week ago in the motel unit. Nigel Escott says the person identified themselves and the complaint is being taken seriously. PREREC IV
Sri Lanka's capital, Colombo, is once again calm after a violent night of clashes between rock throwing anti-government demonstrators and armed police. Two people were killed and more than 70 injured in street battles sparked by the government's suspension of parliament. President Chandrika Kumaratunga suspended parliament to avoid a no-confidence vote after her ruling alliance lost its parliamentary majority. Meanwhile the General Manager of New Zealand cricket Tim Murdoch says the national team will move out of Colombo after tonight's match against India - but he says it's not a knee-jerk reaction. DROP IN
The BBC's Colombo correspondent, Francis Harrison, says the oppositon-led protests were actually banned. PREREC IV
Over 600 National Party delegates are gathered in Auckland for their annual conference. The focus of the three day even is a high-profile presidential contest between the encumbent John Slater and challenger Michelle Boag. The conference is well underway. Our political editor Al Morrison is there and he joins me now. LIVER
In Australia - the Englishwoman who escaped from a gunman after he shot her boyfriend on an isolated outback highway north of Alice Springs, is expected to make her first public statement about her ordeal in the next few hours. Joanne Lees will prepare a written statement but has refused to read it on camera, and has also refused police offers for her to record it in private using a police video camera. The statement was expected yesterday. Meanwhile there is still no sign of the gunman or the mising boyfriend Peter Falconio, whose blood was found at the scene of the highway holdup. Philip Cornford from the Sydney Morning Herald is in Alice Springs - I asked him why the police are so keen for Ms Lees to make a public statement. PREREC IV
While the South Island remains in the grip of icy weather, Canterbury is still dealing with last winter's legacy. In October a severe storm hit the province, toppling about nine thousand trees and all but destroying the Lyttelton marina. Nine months on, the clean-up is still going on - John MacDonald compiled this report. PKGE
The organisers of next month's Catching the Knowledge Wave conference have been accused of shutting out smaller political parties. While the smaller parties are invited to the conference only National and Labour have been involved in the committee organising the conference. Economics correspondent Brent Edwards has more. PKGE

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Year 2001

Reference number 143905

Media type AUDIO

Collection Sound Collection

Ngā Taonga Korero Collection

Credits RNZ Collection

Date 20 Jul 2001

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