9 Jun 2021

News from around the Pacific

12:04 pm on 9 June 2021
Sebastien Lecornu

Sebastien Lecornu Photo: AFP or licensors

Lecornu deplores slow vaccination in French overseas territories

The French overseas minister Sebastien Lecornu has the slow Covid-19 vaccine uptake in overseas territories has no link to France's vaccine supply, which has been plentiful.

In France, more than half the adult population has been inoculated while in some territories only about 10 percent has had a vaccination.

"Some people maintain a climate of mistrust beyond any scientific logic, with fear spreading on social media based on untruthful arguments," he said.

In French Polynesia, about a third of the population has been vaccinated.

In Wallis and Futuna, the vaccine uptake has slowed to the point that vaccine stocks are to be returned in order to prevent them from expiring.

Hunter shot dead in New Caledonia

An investigation has been opened in New Caledonia into the fatal shooting of a 37-year-old hunter.

The man was killed near Touho when a teenage member of a hunting party mistook the victim for game.

Reports say the victim, who wasn't wearing a vest, had moved away from the agreed position in the hunters' line-up.

An investigation into involuntary homicide has been opened.

The teenager is free but risks being jailed for up to three years.

Pasifika nurses say there aren't cultural supports in place for them.

Thirty-thousand nurses in New Zealand will strike this morning, having overwhelmingly rejected district health boards' latest offer on pay and conditions.

Pasifika nurses say there aren't cultural supports in place for them.

There are just over 1500 Pasifika nurses in New Zealand.

But the Chairperson of the New Zealand Nursing Organisation's Pacific Section, Eseta Finau, said proper representation is a continual issue.

She said it's only through their peers that nurses feel supported because district health boards fail to acknowledge their needs and contributions.

Ms Finau is concerned that prospective Pasifika nurses see a grim picture of what they can expect once they join the profession.

Strike action will begin at 11 o'clock this morning, with a march onto Parliament at noon.

Fijian community health activist is the newest on the Earthshot Prize Council.

A Fijian community health activist says it's an amazing opportunity to be sitting on the Earthshot Prize Council.

Ernest Gibson is one of the newest on the 15-member council which includes Britain's Prince William, environmentalist Sir David Attenborough and actor Cate Blanchett.

The prizes will be given out annually from this year and are aimed at finding at least 50 solutions to the world's greatest environmental problems by 2030.

Mr Gibson said it's great to be part of a programme rewarding ground breaking technological innovation.

It means that I have the opportunity to share parts of this region that may not have been discussed at this level. I have an opportunity to share learnings from my cultural and my people that have been cultivated over hundreds of years."

Ernest Gibson said young people like him have a lot of drive and potential to shake up the system.