ANZ acknowledges civil penalty court decision in relation to 2015 Institutional Equity Placement

Source: ANZ statements

This follows an earlier judgment, delivered on 13 October 2023, in which the Court found that ANZ should have notified the ASX of the joint lead managers’ take-up of shares in its 2015 institutional share placement.

The Court has today ordered ANZ to pay a civil penalty of $900,000 in relation to a continuous disclosure contravention that the Court found occurred on 7 August 2015. 

ANZ is considering today’s decision together with the judgment delivered in October.

Fatal crash, Masterton

Source: New Zealand Police (District News)

Police can advise that one person has died following a serious crash in Masterton.

The crash, involving two vehicles, was reported shortly after 1:50pm.

The Serious Crash Unit attended, and the road has since reopened.

Police wish to thank motorists for their patience while the road was closed.

Enquiries into the circumstances of the crash are ongoing. 


Issued by Police Media Centre

Climate News – NIWA Hotspot Watch

Source: NIWA

This week’s Hotspot Watch – While no hotspots currently exist in the North Island, a new hotspot is close to emerging along the Kapiti Coast.
As of 5 December, the New Zealand Drought Index (NZDI) map below shows that abnormally dry conditions are currently found in parts of Wellington.
In the past week, the hotspot located in Marlborough Sounds remained in place, while new, small hotspots emerged in Nelson and Banks Peninsula. Conditions are also approaching hotspot criteria in South Canterbury and parts of Otago and Southland.
Abnormally dry conditions are currently found in parts of Nelson, Marlborough, North Canterbury, Banks Peninsula, South Canterbury, and interior Otago.

Fire Safety – Otago’s Lakes zone enters restricted fire season

Source: Fire and Emergency New Zealand

The Lakes zone in Otago will enter a restricted fire season, as of 8am on Saturday 9 December, until further notice.
This zone incorporates Queenstown and Wanaka and joins Central and Upper Waitaki zones in a restricted season. Central and Upper Waitaki zones moved into a restricted season on Tuesday 5 December.
A restricted fire season means a permit is required to light a fire in open air. You can apply for one at
Declaring the restricted fire season, Fire and Emergency New Zealand’s Otago District Manager Phil Marsh says conditions in Otago are rapidly changing.
“This coming weekend and into the start of next week we are looking at a potential ‘spike’ period where forest fire danger will likely reach ‘very extreme’ in Lakes, Central and Upper Waitaki,” he says.
“For that reason, we have made the decision to move Lakes into a restricted fire season.
“Requiring people to have a permit before lighting a fire means our local team can be on hand to provide advice about how to safely conduct a burn.”
For fire safety tips, applying for a permit, and more information about the activities you can and can’t do in a restricted fire season,  go to

Media News – Workers at Radio New Zealand warn of industrial action over pay claim

Source: PSA

The failure of RNZ management to agree to a pay rise which fairly reflects the rising cost of living could see workers at RNZ take industrial action warns the PSA and E tū.
Workers are pushing for a 7% rise while RNZ is offering 5.5%.
“Workers at RNZ are like so many around the country who are facing a big squeeze on their household budgets from rising supermarket bills and mortgage interest costs, so we believe 7% is fair and reasonable,” said Kerry Davies, National Secretary for the Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi.
E tū union organiser Dr Michael Gilchrist said, “Union members feel betrayed by the offer, and angry that at this time the RNZ board awarded a $65,000 bonus to chief executive Paul Thompson. That’s no less than a full year’s salary for many staff.”
More than half of RNZ’s staff of around 300 stopped work to meet this week to discuss progress in bargaining for the collective agreement. Others provided essential cover for the national broadcaster.
The meeting resolved to back the claim for a 7% pay increase and advised RNZ if a satisfactory offer was not made by next Wednesday (13 December), members would ask their unions to initiate a secret ballot on industrial action.
RNZ received a net funding boost of $23M but says most of that money would be spent on new technology and new projects. That is despite Paul Thompson telling staff at meetings earlier this year that probably the biggest driver of RNZ’s strategy was to ‘retain, train, pay and support our people’.
Around three quarters of RNZ workers are covered by the collective agreement and are members of E tū or the PSA.

Australia Law News – Australian Judicial Officers Association on the Supreme Court (Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry) Bill 2023

Source: Australian Judicial Officers Association

Statement From: Justice Michael Walton, President of the Australian Judicial Officers Association – 8 December 2023

The Australian Judicial Officers Association is a voluntary association of serving and retired judges and magistrates drawn from all jurisdictions across Australia. The AJOA is committed to furthering the public interest in maintaining a strong and independent judiciary within a democratic society that adheres to the rule of law.

The AJOA notes the public statement by the Attorney-General of Tasmania that the Tasmanian Parliament is to be recalled on 12 December 2023 to consider legislation to establish an enquiry into Justice Gregory Geason of the Supreme Court of Tasmania.  It has been reported in the media that Justice Geason (who is not a member of the AJOA), has been charged with one count of common assault and one count of emotional abuse to which he has pleaded not guilty.  It is not to be overlooked that the charges against Justice Geason have not been determined and are next listed for mention before the Magistrates’ Court on 6 February 2024.

The AJOA does not seek to comment on the charges brought against Justice Geason, other than to note that, like the rest of the community, judges are subject to the law, including the presumption of innocence.

The AJOA is, however, very concerned about the manner in which the Tasmanian government has proposed to respond to the situation which has arisen in relation to Justice Geason.

The AJOA supports the establishment of procedures and bodies to receive and determine complaints made about the conduct of judges. Most states, but not Tasmania, already have such bodies.  The urgent recall of the Tasmanian Parliament proposed by the Attorney-General is not, however, for the purpose of considering legislation to establish an equivalent body in Tasmania, but to pass legislation directed only at Justice Gleason.

Judges of the Supreme Court of Tasmania may only be suspended or removed from office upon the address of both Houses of Parliament.  It is therefore open to Parliament to make enquiries into the conduct or behaviour of a judge to the extent that it is thought that their conduct or behaviour might render them unsuitable to continue in office.  Any such enquiries must, however, be formulated so as not to infringe legal principles, including the separation of powers between the legislature, the executive and the judiciary.

The AJOA has serious concerns that the legislation proposed to facilitate an enquiry into Justice Geason’s conduct and behaviour, the Supreme Court (Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry) Bill 2023, does not meet these essential standards in certain key respects.

If enacted, s 17(1) of the Supreme Court (Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry) Bill 2023 would give the Minister for Justice the power to suspend Justice Geason in certain circumstances, including where he is charged with an offence that is punishable by imprisonment for a term of 12 months or more.  The charges brought against Justice Geason are of this type.  The Minister is also given power to specify the terms and conditions in relation to the suspension and to lift the suspension at any time (s 17(3)).  These provisions, if enacted, would constitute a flagrant interference by the executive with the independence of the judiciary.

Section 6(2) of the Supreme Court (Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry) Bill 2023 appears to abrogate all vital and long-established common law privileges, including legal professional privilege.  The Commission of Inquiry into Justice Geason would be empowered to conduct its inquiry and obtain information ‘in any manner it considers appropriate’, and would not be restricted by law or by any privilege from ‘reviewing records, documents or information’. Further, s 7(5)(b) makes s 26 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act 1995 applicable. That provision abrogates privilege against self-incrimination.

The proposed Commission of Inquiry into Justice Geason would be required to complete its inquiry as soon as practicable (s 5(2)) and would be empowered to prepare an interim report (s 8(1)) containing ‘interim findings of fact’ upon which it could express its opinion about whether the Judge’s conduct and behaviour warrants his suspension or removal from office.  The capacity of the Commission of Inquiry to express an opinion that a judicial officer should be removed from office based only upon ‘interim findings of fact’ contained in an interim report undermines the integrity of the proposed inquiry and off

Australia News – Graphene hardens up as a core ingredient in recycling concrete in future – Flinders University

Source: Flinders University

Amid the rubble of large-sale earthquake, war or other disaster – and as ageing buildings and infrastructure are replaced – mountains of concrete are often taken to landfill or pounded into rubble for roads.  

For a more sustainable approach, Flinders University and The University of Melbourne experts are developing a ‘value add’ for old broken concrete to ‘upcycling’ coarse aggregate to produce a strong, durable and workable  concrete using a small amount of a secret ingredient – graphene.  

The novel method is gaining ground every day as new graphene deposits are discovered and mined – bringing the price of that raw material down as the cost of cement and aggregates continues to rise, the researchers say.  

They have tested results using a weak graphene solution on recycled aggregates to produce concrete potentially superior to untreated recycled aggregates in cement-based mixtures.

Such methods are urgently needed in waste management with demolition and construction waste products expected to rise to almost 2.6 billion tonnes by 2030 globally. At the same time, the production of concrete is adding to climate change with greenhouse gas emissions and extraction methods adding to the ecological impacts.  

Improving the quality of recycled concrete aggregates will also play a vital role in the quality, performance and workability of recycled concrete aggregates while reducing the environmental footprints.  

“This new form of treated recycled concrete aggregates may be more expensive to make right now, but when considering circularity and the life cycle of the materials, the costs are coming down rapidly,” says Flinders University’s Dr Aliakbar Gholampour, the first author in a new article in Resources, Conservation and Recycling.  

Dr Gholampour, Senior Lecturer in Civil and Structural Engineering at Flinders, says the new method’s success could also help to meet increasing demand for building materials around the world.  

Dr Gholampour has filed a patent for the approach, with University of Melbourne coauthor and Senior Research Fellow Dr Massoud Sofi, who is Deputy Director (Research) at the Centre for Recovered Resources (CoRR).  

The latest article, Performance of concrete containing pristine graphene-treated recycled concrete aggregates

(2023) by Aliakbar Gholampour, Massoud Sofi, Houman Alipooramirabad (Birmingham City University) and Youhong Tang has been published in the high-impact journal Resources, Conservation and Recycling, DOI: 10.1016/j.resconrec.2023.107266.

Acknowledgements: This work was supported by Flinders University, The University of Melbourne and the ARC (IH200100010).

Fig. 6. (a) Axial compression, (b) splitting tension, (c) water absorption and (d) drying shrinkage tests.


Source: New Zealand Defence Force

The last of the Kiwi contingent has wrapped up its involvement in a mammoth four-month, eight-nation exercise aimed at preparing Indo-Pacific countries for a large-scale natural disaster.

Ten New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel were taking part in Exercise Pacific Partnership, which included medical, engineering, Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR), public health and community outreach projects.

They joined dock landing ship USS Pearl Harbor at various stages during the exercise, which started in August, providing expertise in planning, coordination, chaplaincy, physiotherapy, cultural advice, rehabilitation and physical training.

Ex Pacific Partnership was developed 18 years ago as a way to improve on the disjointed HADR response to the 2004 Indonesian earthquake and tsunami. It’s the largest annual multinational HADR preparedness mission conducted in the Pacific.

The New Zealanders were among more than 1500 personnel from the United States, Australia, Canada, Chile, Japan, Republic of Korea, and the United Kingdom taking part.

Host nations included Vietnam, Philippines, Malaysia, Palau, Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Fiji and Tonga.

Four ships from three different navies were involved and personnel were flown into some of the more remote mission stops like Palau and Papua New Guinea.

Royal New Zealand Navy Captain Jon Beadsmoore held the role of Multinational Operations Coordination Cell director for the duration of the exercise, coordinating the participation of international personnel joining the mission.

“It was a busy role, with a large number of personnel movements as people surged in and out of the exercise,” he said.

It was a complex exercise and Captain Beadsmoore said the behind-the-scenes co-ordination of all the participants was a great challenge.

“It’s worth it to see the positive effects the mission has on the communities in each country we’ve been able to visit. The teamwork that is generated amongst all the partner nation staff and the host nation personnel contribute to the success of the mission.”

It was hard to pick out a specific highlight from the exercise, Captain Beadsmoore said.

“But for me personally it has been the fri

Activist News – National rallies and marches after feeble, anti-Palestinian parliamentary motion passes

Source: Palestine Solidarity Network Aotearoa – Statement

Nationwide marches, rallies and vigils will take place across the country again this weekend despite the passing of yesterday’s parliamentary motion supporting a ceasefire in Gaza.

Israel has now slaughtered well over 6,600 Palestinian children, the equivalent of all the children in 24 average-sized New Zealand primary schools.

We were pleased to see the word genocide has finally reached the New Zealand parliament with a clear refreshing speech from Damien O’Connor who described the reality of life for Palestinians in Gaza.

But instead of sheeting home responsibility for the genocide the government motion contained not a single word of criticism of Israel – not even a peep. The parliamentary motion was a feeble, anti-Palestinian motion.

The focus of the protests is shifting to Palestinian calls for BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) against Israel because of its apartheid policies against Palestinians.

“We are working to isolate apartheid Israel just as New Zealand helped to isolate apartheid South Africa several decades ago,” says PSNA National Chair John Minto. “The big majority of New Zealanders are on side with Palestinians but our elected representatives still defer, in the most cowardly way, to apartheid Israel”

“It is the failure of western governments, New Zealand included, to hold Israel to account for its crimes against the Palestinian people that is behind Israel’s genocidal rampage in Gaza today.”

The details of the rallies and marches around the country are on our facebook page here.

John Minto
National Chair
Palestine Solidarity Network Aotearoa

Save the Children – “We are failing the children of Gaza”: Conditions to provide humanitarian assistance to children in Gaza are not met

Source: Save the Children

The intensity of the Government of Israel’s offensive coupled with its ongoing siege have undermined the ability to provide humanitarian assistance, Save the Children said today.
If a definitive ceasefire and the necessary conditions for a humanitarian response are not put in place immediately, more children’s lives will be the cost.
Inger Ashing, Save the Children International’s Chief Executive Officer, said:
“We are running out of words to describe the horror unfolding for Gaza’s children. Most of them have been forcibly displaced, squeezed into a tiny sliver of land that cannot accommodate them. Those who haven’t been forced from their homes are cut-off from the basics needed for survival, far away from the little amount of humanitarian assistance that can be delivered.
“Those who have survived the bombardment so far face the imminent risk of starvation and disease. Our teams are telling us of maggots being picked from wounds, and children undergoing amputations without anesthetic. Children are enduring and witnessing horrors, while the world looks on. The level of human suffering is intolerable.
“As humanitarian agencies have been repeatedly warning: there is nowhere safe in Gaza. We have sounded the alarm for weeks and the world has failed to act.
“Humanitarian assistance has become the only lifeline for children and their families since this escalation began – and now, even that is becoming increasingly impossible. We are simply unable to do our job effectively.
“The intensity of hostilities and the weaponisation of aid by the Israeli authorities, including drip-feeding of food, water, and medicine, to a population under siege, mean we simply cannot reach children throughout Gaza at the scale required. Our ability to fulfil our duty to keep our teams safe has been destroyed. Our collective responsibility to protect children has been thwarted.
“What kind of future will the children who survive the onslaught face? They have lost their families, their homes and schools have been destroyed, they have suffered unimaginable mental harm. We cannot also let them lose hope that the world will act, and that humanity will prevail.
“I received this message from my team in the occupied Palestinian territory today: ‘We are failing the children of Gaza.’ But this is outside of our control. The world has a responsibility to act immediately.”
Save the Children stands ready to scale-up our support to children who will need humanitarian assistance to live to see next week. But the basic conditions to reach families need to be established by the international community.
Save the Children has been providing essential services and support to Palestinian children since 1953. Save the Children’s team in the occupied Palestinian territory has been working around the clock, prepositioning vital supplies to support people in need, and working to find ways to get assistance into Gaza.