Sir Bob Jones loses hearing aid before defamation hearing, forcing court to improvise

Wellington businessman Sir Bob Jones' defamation trial got off to a slow start on Tuesday morning after his hearing aid was lost. 

Sir Bob was sworn in on the stand when he realised he did not have his listening device, forcing him to head home and look for it as the court adjourned.

A search of his home was unsuccessful and he returned to court empty-handed.

The trial was able to continue with the use of a recording device. 

Initially the 80-year-old wore the device on his head like a hat before a judge stepped in to correct him and show him he could have it sit beneath his chin. 

Sir Bob is suing filmmaker Renae Maihi for starting an online campaign to strip him of his knighthood following a column he wrote in 2018 about Waitangi Day.

In the column, Sir Bob called for an annual "Māori Gratitude Day" as "there are no full-blooded Māoris in existence... had it not been for migrants mainly Brits not a single Māori alive today would have existed."

He went on to say there should be "a public holiday where Māori bring us breakfast in bed or weed our gardens, wash and polish our cars and so on, out of gratitude for existing."

He later claimed the article was satirical.

The defamation proceedings are expected to last two weeks.