News in 5: Byron Bay woman’s malaria fight; Emma Watson’s tattoo mishap; Campion’s ex denies paternity.

Shelly Hill. GoFundMe.

1. Byron Bay woman facing double amputation after contracting malaria during “dream trip” to Cambodia.

Volunteering in a Cambodian elephant sanctuary was a dream for 46-year-old Byron Bay woman Shelley Hill.

The mental health worker had been planning the trip for a long time and was diligent about receiving the necessary vaccinations before her departure.

But, when she consulted a doctor about the need for anti-malaria medication, she was told it would not be necessary because it would be the dry season, her GoFundMe page reads.

It was a decision that proved almost fatal, and will likely result in the amputation of her hands and toes.

“She started feeling sick straight after she got back but she just thought she had giardia or a tummy bug that she had picked up over there,” her close friend Mel Wilson told Nine News.

Four days after returning from the week-long trip in February, Hill was rushed to hospital where she spent five days in a coma on life support. Her organs were shutting down and she was diagnosed with the most severe strain of malaria.

Advertisement

Though Hill has since regained consciousness, she remains on daily dialysis after kidney failure and is still fighting an infection.

In addition, restricted blood circulation has caused irreversible necrosis – or cell death – in her hands and feet that will most likely require amputation.

“On Friday [the doctor] said if he had to operate he would take all 10 toes and both hands,” Wilson said.

“The ends of her fingers are completely black and they actually sound like wood when she taps them on a table or something. They are just wasted away and she can’t feel either hand.”

Malaria is an infection spread through mosquitoes in tropical and sub-tropical countries. The malaria parasites, which live in infected female mosquitos, are injected into a person’s bloodstream via mosquito bites. The parasites infect the liver and blood cells, NSW Health states, and can cause a serious, sometimes fatal, infection.

The disease is preventable, and NSW Health recommends overseas travellers begin taking preventative antimalarial drugs several weeks before departure.

“Depending on the risk of malaria in the areas you are visiting, you may be advised to take drugs to prevent malaria,” the website states.

According to Nine News, Hill works for Medibank Private on a suicide hotline and, before contracting malaria, was habitually fit and healthy.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Hill pay for the medical bills and the long rehabilitation that lies ahead. To donate to help Hill’s recovery, click here.

MORE FROM Current Affairs

2. Emma Watson debuts ‘Time’s up’ tattoo with one, small problem.

Emma Watson attends the 2018 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on March 4, 2018 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo via Getty Images)

Actress Emma Watson is a fierce and wonderfully eloquent leader in the 'Time's Up' movement currently sweeping the entertainment industry.

But last night at an Academy Awards after party, fans noticed the 27-year-old debuted a 'Time's Up' tattoo with an itty-bitty typo... it was missing the apostrophe.

The social media chatter was relentless (we all know how passionate 'grammar police' can be), with many asking: "What would Hermione think?"

But the missing apostrophe might not have been an accident - the hashtag itself, after all, doesn't include an apostrophe, either.

Watson says 'Time's Up'. (Photo via Getty Images)

Either way, the trolls are missing the point.

The former Harry Potter star is a leader in fighting for equality and the rights of women in the entertainment industry, and also around the world.

"I stand in solidarity with women across every industry to say #TIMESUP on abuse, harassment, and assault," she posted to Instagram when the initiative was launched at the start of January.

She recently donated AU$1.8 million to the UK's Justice and Equality Fund. She is pushing to make Time's Up a global movement. And, lets not forget, in 2014, she helped UN Women launch the campaign HeForShe, calling for men to advocate gender equality.

Apostrophe or not, Watson's is an effort that demands recognition.

3. A Melbourne council had received four complaints about a dog that mauled a 10-year-old girl on Sunday night.

South African Boerboel dog
It's believed a South African Boerboel was responsible for the attack. Image via Getty.

A Melbourne council has received repeated complaints about dogs at a suburban home where a 10-year-old girl was mauled, AAP reports.

The girl suffered serious injuries including bites and cuts and is believed to have lost an ear when attacked by the South African boerboel at her Berwick home on Sunday night.

She remains in a stable condition in hospital while two dogs were seized by City of Casey rangers. According to Nine News, the dog has since been put down with permission from the owner.

The council on Monday revealed they had been called to the property before and have previously issued four infringements to the dogs' owner.

Council officers attended the property in December following reports that a dog, described as similar to a bullmastiff, acted aggressively towards a woman jogging past.

"Following an investigation, it was deemed the incident was not serious enough to trigger seizure of the dog," the council said in a statement.

The council then issued four fines to the dog owner in January and February for various offences including biting a person.

The dogs remained unregistered at the time of the attack, the statement read.

Neighbours rushed to the home on Sunday night after hearing screaming and seeing the girl's sister, aged seven, calling for help.

It is believed the girls' mother had left them home alone while she went to the gym.

"A young girl came out saying her sister was being attacked," neighbour Jimmy Baird told 9 News on Monday.

Mr Baird and another neighbour ran to the home and found the terrified girl banging on a door trying to get away from the dog.

"As I opened the door, this massive head was coming through the door frothing at the mouth. It was obviously going to go us," he said.

The neighbours went around to the side of the house and distracted the dog, allowing the girl to escape.

"I'm glad we were there because the young girl probably wouldn't have survived."

Police Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton said the matter would be handled by the local council but added the incident served as a reminder for people to keep control of their dogs.

The attack comes a day after a 12-month-old girl was killed by her family's Rottweiler in northern NSW.

4. Change room spat between Aussie cricketer David Warner and South African rival sparked by "disparaging comments about Warner's wife".

David Warner and Candice Warner
David Warner and Candice Warner. Image via Getty.

A war of words has broken out in the wake of David Warner's stunning tea-time rampage in Durban, with South Africa claiming Australia were also guilty of personal sledging in the spiteful Test, AAP reports.

Dramatic footage emerged on Monday of Warner being restrained by teammates in an off-field confrontation with South Africa keeper Quinton de Kock.

The CCTV video shows a fired-up Warner remonstrating with de Kock as the teams walked upstairs to the change rooms during Sunday's tea break.

Match referee Jeff Crowe and the International Cricket Council continue to probe the ugly episode, but it's understood it was sparked when de Kock made disparaging comments about Warner's wife.

South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis, whose contribution to the tea commotion was to emerge from the rooms and tell Warner to move on, argued on Monday "there was a lot of personal stuff being said" by "both parties".

Proteas team manager Mohammed Moosajee suggested Warner got personal in his sledging and "whatever happens out on the field, you giving something you've got to take it".

Du Plesiss and Moosajee wouldn't get into nitty-gritty, but the Proteas are privately alleging that Warner referenced de Kock's sister and mother in some verbals.

Australia captain Steve Smith wouldn't confirm what triggered the rampage, but repeatedly rejected accusations Australia made personal comments about de Kock.

"We were certainly very chirpy out on the field as well. As far as I'm aware we didn't get personal towards Quinton," Smith said after his side's 118-run win.

"I don't think it was personal at all, but Faf can say what he likes I guess.

"What he (de Kock) said got a little bit personal towards Davey and as we saw it certainly provoked an emotional response.

"Those things aren't on and you can't be getting into somebody's personal life... that's crossing the line."

Warner is physically held back by Usman Khawaja in the footage then shepherded into Australia's rooms by Smith.

"What was said and done during that interval was regrettable on both sides," Smith said.

"At times we need to pull things back and ensure we are playing within the spirit of the game."

Du Plesiss, who admitted he'd never seen anything like the incident in his career, called on umpires to take better control during games.

"If you chirp each other it's always on the field. There needs to be boundaries," he said.

"Umpires play a big role in that, to make sure that you don't let it get to that stage."

5. Vikki Campion's ex-fiancé denies he is the father of the baby she will raise with former deputy PM Barnaby Joyce.

John Bergin. Image via Twitter.
John Bergin. Image via Twitter.

The former fiancé of Barnaby Joyce's partner, Vikki Campion, has denied he is the father of her baby, The Daily Telegraph reports.

Two days ago, the former deputy prime minister of Australia admitted he had "doubts" about the paternity of his partner's child, revealing he was travelling at the time the child was supposedly conceived.

He said the baby's paternity was a "grey area", but said he "wouldn't care" if the baby was his and planned to raise it as his own.

In response to Joyce's comment, Vikki Campion's former fiancé, John Bergin, has denied he is the father of the child.

"I haven't seen Vikki since late 2016, any suggestion that I am the father of Vikki's child is incorrect," he told The Daily Telegraph.

"I'm sure you can appreciate that I don’t have anything further to add."

After revealing his doubts about the baby's paternity, Barnaby Joyce says personal questions are "nobody else's business".

"Anything that's personal in nature is nobody else's business but mine and Vikki's, nobody else's business," Mr Joyce told reporters in Tamworth on Monday.

"So we're not here to be part of some ongoing litany of discussions about this."

6. A month-long committal hearing to decide if Cardinal George Pell will stand trial for sexual abuse has begun.

Cardinal George Pell
Cardinal George Pell. Image via Getty.

Cardinal George Pell's barrister has accused Victorian police of failing to follow guidelines for investigating prominent people because of a "presumption of guilt" against the 76-year-old, AAP reports.

The highest-ranking Catholic official to be charged with sexual abuse faced court on Monday for the start of a month-long committal hearing that will determine if he stands trial.

Defence barrister Robert Richter QC said a former judge had prepared a report about how police should investigate prominent people.

"It is a guide to police about how to fairly investigate claims against prominent people," he told Melbourne Magistrates Court on Monday.

"We say that was not followed because there was a presumption of guilt."

Pell's legal team had made submissions on that issue to Victoria Police and the Director of Public Prosecutions, the barrister said.

Mr Richter questioned whether police had taken into account the 21 witness statements the defence had provided, which were favourable to the cardinal.

He said those statements should have been properly investigated as part of the inquiry.

"They have not done so," he said.

Mr Richter said only three of those witnesses would be called by the prosecution to give evidence at the committal.

"These documents are certainly relevant to the alleged offences," he said.

"I know it doesn't suit the prosecution because they are exculpatory of the cardinal."

Pell has taken leave from his position as Vatican treasurer to fight the historical sexual offence charges involving multiple complainants.

Apart from the first 25 minutes, most of Monday's hearing was closed to the public while the first accuser gave evidence.

The hearing is expected to remain closed to the public and media for two weeks while complainants give their evidence, as required by law in sexual offence cases.

The complainants will give evidence from a remote witness facility, accompanied by a support person and, if they wish, a three-year-old labrador support dog called Coop.

As many as 50 people will be called as witnesses at the hearing.

Pell will also be allowed to have a support person with him during the closed sessions, with Mr Richter saying it was important because of the cardinal's age and health.

 

MORE FROM MAMAMIA

JOIN THE CONVERSATION