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How about donating those airpoints, minister?

Friday July 21, 2017 Published in Smoke Signals

“It was indeed enlightening to listen to the Minister of Health speaking during the 2017 Health Budget debate with regard to medical referrals to New Zealand,” a smoke signaller says.

“The budget allocation was some $500,000…a huge cost to the nation, but so very important for serious medical cases. The minister also highlighted the cost of sending one baby child to New Zealand for emergency treatment last year. He said the cost was around $100,000 for that single referral. It has long been suggested that the air points MPs accumulate during their “official” travels overseas on government business, should be put into a National Ministry of Health Bank of Air Points, which can be accessed for such needy cases as referrals of serious medical cases to New Zealand.  Minister, you have travelled  to Geneva how many times during your tenure? There must be mega points in your personal account. You do not pay for these trips, so why don’t you set an example, and give back all those airpoints into a collective airpoints Health Bank, which can take care of sending serious cases to New Zealand. What a fantastic commitment you would be showing. You might even inspire PM Puna to let go of some of his mega-mega personal airpoints, compliments of taxpayers’ money. What a fine example you would be setting, not only as a Minister of the Crown in charge of Health, but as a proud supporter of te iti tangata.


It’s good to see government haven’t lost their illogical budget decisions, a smoke signaller says. “We have Tourism raking in the cash for the islands. So instead of feeding the Tourism Corporation so it can perform better, government decides it can live off the same scraps, while still expecting staff to double their performance. Now that makes a lot of sense. Not.


A smoke signaller says it’s a waste of time alerting Betela residents to the presence of two cat-killing dogs in the area. “The best idea is to phone the police dog controller and get them to sort out the situation. That’s what he is there for.”


The same smoke signaller has spoken out against proposed new animal care legislation, saying outsiders shouldn’t have any say in how Cook Islanders look after their animals. “Please just leave us alone. We Cook Islanders don’t believe in having to pay heavy penalties and in general, we don’t mistreat out animals. Please keep out of local peoples’ properties and don’t go crying to the news media about our animals, because you are giving our beautiful islands a bad name that they don’t deserve. If you don’t like it here, please just leave our islands.”


After visiting a certain ministry the other day, I think it might be time for some government staff to have lessons on how to conduct themselves while serving the public,” a smoke signaller says. “The person I dealt with was chewing gum very vigorously the whole time I was speaking to her and when I asked her a question, all I got in return was a grunt. A smile doesn’t cost anything – and it doesn’t cost anything to be polite, either.”