7 Mar 2007

Niue politician puts power problem on agenda with NZ

8:06 pm on 7 March 2007

A Niue politician says electricity supply has to be considered an essential service and New Zealand needs to bear this in mind when allocating its aid.

Niue is suffering more prolonged power outages after one of the two diesel generators had broken down.

It follows a major fire last year which gutted the island's power plant and left the island without power for a week.

New Zealand agreed at the time to provide a third generator but because of a prolonged tendering process that machine is yet to arrive.

The Niue government says they have told New Zealand to sort this out while opposition MP, O'Love Jacobsen, says is this is probably where the most necessary economic assistance from New Zealand should be directed.

"I just think that, surely, other projects can be withheld and utilise those monies to bring ashore the necessary generators that are required to have an all functioning and operational power [supply] for this island."

O'Love Jacobsen