News of Zealand

News of Zealand: International Students Paying to Work

Metiria Turei concedes criticism is legitimate, and tax on soft drink could save children's teeth.
August 8, 2017, 11:07pm
Image via Flickr

All you need to know about the world this morning, curated by 95bFM and VICE NZ.

LOCAL NEWS

Indian Students Paying Up to $40,000 For Jobs
Members of New Zealand's Indian community have opened up about the exploitation some Indian students are experiencing. Students say they've been in jobs where they earned less than their official rate after being forced to pay a third of their weekly wages to their employer. One former student said he had to pay $35,000 to the employer to get his job. Another former student said he was made to work up to 70 hours a week, but was only paid for 40. According to the Migrant Workers Association, "job-selling" is common and these problems are widespread.

Turei Admits Mistakes in Handling of Benefit Fraud Admission
Metiria Turei, co-leader of the Green Party, has admitted she should've payed back the money she owed before going public with her admission of historic benefit fraud. Her statement came after two Green MPs, Kennedy Graham and David Clendon, announced they would quit to protest Turei's confession. They were both subsequently ousted from the party's caucus. Turei accepted that criticism about not paying back what she owed was "legitimate". "I could have made that decision and I didn't, and these are the consequences of that," she said.

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Squid Fishing Endangering NZ Sea Lions
An action plan has been put forward by the Ministry for Primary Industries to protect local sea lions from squid fishing. The 'Squid 6T Operational Plan', released yesterday for consultation, would regulate trawling for squid around the Auckland Islands, home to the most important breeding colony of this endangered species. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has cautiously welcomed the plan, saying New Zealand sea lions are among the rarest in the world, and deserve more attention.

A Sugary Drinks Tax Could Save New Zealand's Teeth
The appeal, backed by 10,000 signatures and the World Health Organisation, was put forward to Parliament by the Greens, the Maori Party, and The Opportunities Party. Dentist Rob Beaglehole said, "We know that last year, 30,000 children had one or more teeth taken out." On average, New Zealanders consume six times the recommended amount of sugar each day.

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Google Fires Engineer Behind Anti-Diversity Document
Google has dismissed the software engineer James Damore over a document he wrote attacking the company's gender diversity policies. Damore had argued biology helped explain why men were given top roles.

China Fears It Will Suffer from New North Korea Sanctions
Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi said his country will lose out most under the latest economic sanctions imposed on North Korea by the UN Security Council. Wang said that "it will mainly be China paying the price for implementing the resolution," but also pledged China would "properly implement" the sanctions, which forbids any new economic partnerships between the countries and bans many of North Korea's exports.

Venezuelan State Websites Hacked
A series of official Venezuelan websites have been hacked by a group opposing President Nicolás Maduro. The government's main website, along with the Navy and National Electoral Council sites, were all hit in the cyberattack. A message from the "Binary Guardians" group stated: "This dictatorship has its days numbered."

Controversial Pakistani Charity Starts New Political Party
The charity Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD), a Pakistani organisation the UN has deemed a front for a terrorist group, has started its own political party, the Milli Muslim League. JuD's leader, Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, is living under house arrest in Pakistan and has been named a terrorist by the US and the UN. The leader of the charity's new political faction said the party would work for Saeed's release.

Calls for Peace As Kenya Votes
As Kenyans headed to the polls on Tuesday, President Uhuru Kenyatta expressed his wish for voters to take part in the presidential election "in peace." Around 180,000 police and security officers were on the streets to prevent violence in the contest between Kenyatta and Raila Odinga. Barack Obama urged both leaders to respect the result and "to reject violence and incitement." The country famously saw widespread violence after a disputed 2007 vote. According to Al Jazeera, Kenyatta currently leads after two-thirds of the polling stations have reported results.

Reporting by Harry Willis, Mary-Margaret Slack and Josh Storey.