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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Vol 35 no. 9. 9 May 1972



Salient on April 11 published an article about the Peace Research Media Project, in which reference was made to Mr Barry Mitcalfe.

In one part the article suggested that Project funds had been misapplied, in particular in payment for a trip Mr Mitcalfe made to the South Pacific in 1971.

This suggestion is wholly false and without foundation. The Victoria University of Wellington Students Association (Inc.), its executive, and the editor of Salient, being the persons responsible for the writing and publication of the article, unreservedly retract it and express their deep regret that it ever appeared. They have a high regard for Mr Mitcalfe and his voluntary public service in a number of organisations including the Media Project; and they wish to publicly record their full and unqualified apology for the distress the article has caused.

Solicitors acting for Mr Alister Taylor have communicated with the Students Association as publisher of Salient in connection with an article appearing in Salient on 11th April 1972 headed: "Peace Research Media Project." The words "for example, one of the organisers according to several prominent left-wingers who should know made a helluva pile from a conference he ran a few years ago" is considered to be gravely defamatory of Mr Taylor in that it is widely known that he was organiser of the "Peace Power and Politics in Asia Conference" held in 1968. Salient takes this opportunity of acknowledging that Mr Taylor was organiser for the conference referred to and employed in that capacity on a modest retainer for a period of a few months in 1968. Mr Taylor was so employed after the termination of his employment with the N.Z.B.C. brought about by his prior involvement with the conference organisation. Salient deeply regrets any imputation in the article which might have carried the suggestion that monetary gain was any part of Mr Taylor's motivation in participating in the anti-war movement.

Salient further regrets reference in the article published by it to the effect that "not everyone was satisfied by some figures" which "were produced". These words gave the impression that Mr Taylor had failed to properly account for moneys entrusted to him. Salient and the Association accepts that such an allegation is totally unfolded.

As far as Mr Taylor is concerned Salient and the Association accepts that any suggestion of financial irregularity relating to the Peace Media Research Project is totally baseless and it regrets any impression to the contrary which the article in question might have conveyed.