14 Oct 2009

Morning Report: local papers

6:33 am on 14 October 2009

Wednesday's papers: Maori TV still fighting for 2011 Rugby World Cup rights; identity of mystery Asian woman in Aisling Symes disappearance, now known; Education Minister strikes a deal with primary school unions over Government's national standards policy.

NZ Herald

The New Zealand Herald reports police have identified a mystery Asian woman seen talking to Aisling Symes before her disappearance, but have yet to find her. Police still want to talk to her despite a postmortem revealing the child died by drowning.

Maori TV chief executive Jim Mather says the channel will continue to fight the Government for the rights to screen the 2011 Rugby World Cup, and will use money from iwi and corporate groups to outbid it.

District health boards in Auckland will pay $4.4 million more for laboratory services this year than previously planned because of a deal to prop up the shaky new company, Labtests.

Dominion Post

The Dominion Post says Waitakere City Council could be prosecuted over Aisling's death. Neighbours of the Symes say that the council repeatedly ignored requests to do something about a manhole cover that the toddler probably crawled through.

Education Minister Anne Tolley has struck a deal with primary school unions that will see them work together on the Government's national standards policy.

The Press

The Press says Clayton Weatherston is to appeal his conviction for the murder of Sophie Elliott. Sophie's father, Gil Elliott describes the taxpayer-funded appeal as frivolous.

Police say they believe Aisling's body was in a drain for a week before she was found.

Consumers are being advisd to be wary of claims about health products after findings against a health drink by a European health authority.


The Otago Daily Times says neighbours are critical of the police search for Aisling Symes.

Judith Ablett Kerr who represented Weatherston at his trial at the High Court in Christchurch, won't say why she is no longer acting for the convicted killer.

Alcohol advertising and sponsorship have been banned from the University of Otago and university-organised events. There are concerns that this will affect next year's student orientation festival, which is sponsored by Speights.