11 May 2005

New Zealand restates commitment to build harbour on Cooks' Manihiki

3:56 pm on 11 May 2005

The manager of NZ AID in the Cook Islands says they are committed to seeing the completion of a harbour on Manihiki.

Matt Paterson, who's also the deputy high commissioner, says NZ AID has been involved in a number of successfully completed projects on Manihiki, including a health clinic and harbour for Tukao, but there have been problems with the harbour at Tauhunu.

Manihiki's mayor, Kora Kora, says construction of the harbour, the hospital and the airport terminal, is at a standstill, and the office of the minster for outer islands administration, or OMIA, which is responsible, is doing nothing about it.

Mr Paterson says NZ AID funded the materials and the Cook Islands government was responsible for the construction.

He says they will take action once an audit office review of OMIA projects on Manihiki is finished next week.

"We're still awaiting the outcome of that review before deciding on a plan of action to complete the harbour, and to date, through myself and the high commissioner, have made a commitment to the people of Manihiki that once that review is complete, we will complete the construction of that harbour."

Matt Paterson.

The audit office