Smoke Signals

Smoke Signals are remarks and observations that range from the serious to the sarcastic. Typically anonymous, these quips capture the community's notes on life and events in the Cooks, or what's echoing over the Coconut Wireless. Smoke Signals and interesting island photos can be sent by email ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or text to 188, or call the newsroom on 22999.

You have to feel sorry for those long suffering suckers that have money locked up in the Cook Islands National Superannuation Fund.

Smoke Signals

Friday October 19, 2018

Patrol boat’s mystery mission destined to stay that way

The “mission” the Cook Islands police patrol boat Te Kukupa returned from on Friday last week seems destined to remain a mystery forever. In spite of a police spokesman explaining that the story would be revealed within a day or two, there has still been no explanation – and the only thing we know is that it involved something on a regional level.

Smoke Signals

Wednesday October 10, 2018


It seems beyond unbelievable that a civil servant who has been suspended twice from his position as secretary of Marine Resources, should now be appointed to run the Office of the Prime Minister.

Smoke Signals

Friday September 28, 2018


A staff member of the Cook Islands News tried to contact a senior public servant over two days recently. On the first call she was told he was in a meeting. On the second call she was told he was out in the field. He was away for the day on the third call and the fourth was that he was sick. By the fifth call he was on annual leave but, by the sixth call, he was just simply out of the office and contactable on his mobile. He was not answering his mobile however.

Smoke Signals

Thursday September 20, 2018

Time to front up on pension

In 2016 Members of Parliament (Rose Brown and George Maggie) attended a meeting of Grey Power at Sinai Hall. At that meeting the MPs pledged to support the abolition of taxation on pensioner benefits.

Smoke Signals

Saturday September 01, 2018

An unhealthy situation

The newspaper says there is lots of flu going around, and at Dr Uka's surgery, it has been standing room only, with people queuing up to see him.

Smoke Signals

Wednesday August 29, 2018

History rewritten…

Local TV ad tells us that ANZ bank has been banking in the Pacific for 135 years. However, a quick look at Mr Google will tell you that ANZ was formed in 1951 from two other banks. Even if ANZ has purchased one or more banks which have indeed been operating in the Pacific since 1883, it certainly was not under the ANZ name. Management may wish to set the record straight.

Smoke Signals

Wednesday August 15, 2018


Whoever runs the National Auditorium has about five months before UB40 plays to hire a sound technician that isn’t the one that made this year’s Te Maeva Nui (like last year’s) a sound disaster by adjusting the bass so high that the walls shook and the voices were drowned out. And while management is at it, perhaps the exit signs, none of which have lights working, can be fixed before there is a disaster in the event of fire.

Smoke Signals

Monday August 13, 2018

Buggies in the same basket as dodgy scooter drivers

A smoke signaller says he can’t understand recurring anonymous criticism of the island’s buggy tours “When I have been, I have enjoyed my time on them. Some people don’t know how to drive them, and it is the same situation with visitors who hire scooters. But do we put down the scooter hire companies? I commend the buggy tour owners for trying something different on the island to give the tourists a tour that is enjoyable.

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