7 Jun 2013

Pacific inmates in NZ release music CD for charity

3:14 pm on 7 June 2013

A New Zealand prison choir, made up of inmates from Samoa, Tonga, Fiji and the Cook Islands has recorded and released a CD of Pacific Island hymns and traditional songs for charity.

The charity CD was officially released last week, but it was overshadowed by a riot which broke out at the same prison just a day after the release.

None of the choir members was involved in the riot at Spring Hill prison.

A prisoner, who is not allowed to be identified, spoke about the pride he felt in having completed the recording of the CD.

"Celebration of something positive that I've done, is very rare in my life. And so, at the moment I think I'm a bit overwhelmed. I think it will sink in later. At the beginning it was very hard to get everybody to actually join up and have a go at it, most of us have been in prison for a few years now, and it's never been done before, a choir."

A Spring Hill prisoner from the Pacific Focus Unit choir.

The Corrections Department says the CD release is going ahead as planned and all proceeds will go to the Cancer Society.