22 Sep 2005

Niue MPs to hear departing NZ representative

6:58 pm on 22 September 2005

MPs in Niue will hear a speech tomorrow in parliament by the departing high commissioner of New Zealand.

Sandra Lee-Vercoe is leaving five months ahead of schedule for family reasons.

Ms Lee-Vercoe acted as a co-ordinator in Niue's recovery after Cyclone Heta devastated the remote island in January 2004.

Our correspondent in Niue, Patrick Lino, says Ms Lee-Vercoe was instrumental in getting help to the island quickly.

"We can gather from the things that people said, is that she's been doing a lot for Niue, and especially in dealing with the New Zealand government and just working through and just getting things moving in terms of helping us, specially after Cyclone Heta."

New Zealand's representative in the Cook Islands, Kurt Meyer, will be in Niue for the next six months to serve until a permanent replacement is found.