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Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson shared in an instagram post earlier today that himself, his wife Lauren Hashian along with their 2 young daughters Jasmine (4yrs) and Tiana (2yrs) are recovering from Covid19 after testing postive about three weeks ago.

He revealed they caught it off close family friends who had visited with them not realising they were positive at the time.  

Dwayne said his two young daughters, exhibited mild symptoms, but he and his wife, Lauren Hashian, were a different story.

"I can tell you that this has been one of the most challenging and difficult things we have ever had to endure as a family," he said. "And for me personally, too, as well, and I've gone through some doozies in the past."

"But I am happy to tell you guys that we as a family are good. We are on the other end of it. We are on the other side. We are no longer contagious. And we are -- thank god -- we are healthy," he said.…more

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An important addendum to todays Covid announcement is that none of the confirmed Pacific cases are so far linked to the Emmanuel Cook Islands Church that the Rydges maintenance worker attended.

Prime Minister Jacinda Adern reinforces the importance of keeping up the high levels of Pacific testing if anyone has symptoms of Covid and reminds the public of how high Pasifika testing numbers are at 23% - higher then the percentage of the Pacific population in Aotearoa.

She has also given assurance that there will be a Pacific member included in the Ministry Of Health team in dealing with assessments and recommendations for our vulnerable communities.

Another important point made for Pasifika communities is that testing for overstayers is done by Ministry Of Health and this testing process isn't connected to other government enforcement agencies. Dr Bloomfield encrouages all people regardless of immigrations status to come forward and says the Government is keen to establish a position of community trust on this.

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Fresh Off The Vote 2020 - Bianca Seinafo

Bianca Seinafo is an actor, presenter and teacher.

She's a proud Samoan Kiwi from Christchurch and she tells us why she thinks it's important to enrol and vote in this year's election. Enrol at vote.nz





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Navy disaster relief vessels and other large ships will no longer rely on old fashioned plumb lines and charts measuring in fathoms to enter some of Tonga’s waters, as they have done since the 1800s.

A partnership between Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Pacific governments is coming to fruition with the publication of new electronic navigational charts for the Kingdom of Tonga.

The new charts, created using hydrographic surveys of the undersea world around Tonga, will be vital if large ships are to navigate the reefs and hidden rocks safely. They also ensure compliance with international maritime regulations.

Ms Kelela Tonga, Director of the Marine and Ports Division at Tonga’s Ministry of Infrastructure, says the charts are of great importance for the safety of navigation of all vessels.

“The production of these charts is a milestone for the future of safe shipping within Tongan waters,” she said.…more

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Funerals could take similar approach to tangihanga under new rules

By Jordan Bond for Radio New Zealand

Government ministers have backed down over tangi and funeral rules, which initially restricted attendees to a maximum of 10 people at a time.

It is now set at 50 people, but the funeral director must submit a plan and have it accepted showing they can mitigate health risks of spreading Covid-19.

"It's definitely what the public have been asking for, so they'll be happy. We're happy, and we'll accommodate whatever needs to be accommodated by the Ministry of Health," said Funeral Directors Association spokesperson Simon Manning.

The association asked Minister of Health David Clark for the limit to be 100 people, arguing they would be more than capable of handling that number, Manning said.

Gee and Hickton Funeral Directors general manager Gavin Murphy agreed that 50 people was too few, but should be better than a limit of 10, which put some families in an unfathomable situation.…more

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Prime Minister of Samoa's response to the New Zealand Law Society


Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi has responded to New Zealand Law Society President Tiana Epati’s “serious concerns” with the constitutional law reforms under review in Samoa.

The Prime Minister’s reply is published verbatim.

“There is no place for the President of an overseas Law Society to use that organization’s name to try to lecture us or interfere with our country’s democratic processes.

Samoa’s Government is trying to create a Specialist Court of Appeal for its own cultural Lands and Titles to be legally acknowledged and preserved.

It is a matter now at Select Committee for public consultation, and it is a matter for Samoa. In short, it is none of your overseas presidential business.

All the best as you concentrate on the needs of all your society’s members, and we will concentrate on looking after our own country-Samoa.…more

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Ministry of Health Samoa Update: - 

As of 9:00am 11th April, 2020, there are NO CONFIRMED CASES of COVID-19 in Samoa. We continue to provide care for all patients who need it, and are prepared to provide care for those who may become infected with COVID-19.

At the time of this update, we can report the following:

1)    The 12 outstanding specimens were sent to New Zealand Tuesday evening on an emergency medevac flight

2)    The results of these 12 tests were all NEGATIVE for COVID-19.

3)    To date, all of the 32 samples sent overseas (New Zealand) for testing came back negative

4)    For the past 5 days, no new samples were collected for COVID-19 testing.

MOH will continue to investigate people reporting fever and flu-like symptoms with a history of travel in the past 14 days overseas, and update the public on the status of their COVID-19 testing.

Active surveillance for early detection of COVID-19 cases in Samoa is ongoing.…more

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New website for Pacific communities to Fight COVID-19

A new website dedicated to providing information for Pacific communities across New Zealand has been launched to help stop the spread of Coronavirus.

PreparePacific.nz  is supported by Counties Manukau Health, Auckland District Health Board, Waitematā District Health Board, Northland District Health Board, Ministry of Health and The Cause Collective.

The aim of the site is to provide up-to-date and relevant information that supports the fight against COVID-19 but in a one-stop shop portal and from Pacific perspectives.

Counties Manukau CE, Fepulea’i Margie Apa says Pacific peoples are faced with a lot of mixed messages about Covid19, and PreparePacific.nz will help them find what they need in one place.

“Our Pacific communities told us they have to look at many different sources to find information which at times is difficult to understand,” says Apa. “We listened to their insights and designed PreparePacific.nz around their needs.”

Features include panels in Pacific Island languages, health messages from Pacific doctors, contacts for family and sexual violence, financial support information and a list of essential services and Pacific providers.…more

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The spread of the Covid-19 virus and the compulsory self-isolation period has dramatically changed the way we live, with restrictions on how we socialise and gather as a community.

One area that has had a devastating impact on our families is the strict restrictions on the funeral and burial process when loved ones die during this period. The Ministry of Health has banned all public funerals and burials and in most cases, bodies are buried between 24 to 48 hours after death.

“This has been the hardest time in my entire career,” says Tongan/Maori funeral director Francis Tipene, who also fronts the popular reality show The Casketeers. “It’s been heartbreaking to uplift someone from a home or the hospital and telling their family that would be the last time they will see their loved ones.”

This week, Francis and other funeral directors challenged the strict guidelines, knowing how difficult it was for Pasifika families who were in mourning. Changes were made, allowing family members living in the same household as the deceased, to attend a funeral service and burial.…more

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World Bank provides US$5.1m for Samoa COVID-19 response

Press release - World Bank Group 

The World Bank has delivered US$5.1 million in immediate funding to support Samoa’s response to the global COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The funds will support Samoa’s efforts to prepare and manage its response to COVID-19.

Samoa currently has no confirmed COVID-19 cases, however a State of Emergency is now in place across the country.

“Protecting Samoan people from COVID-19 is our absolute priority,” said the Hon. Sili Epa Tuioti, Samoan Minister of Finance. “While we remain fortunate that we currently have no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Samoa, it is critical that we are as prepared as possible.…more