NEWS (Melanesia/Pacific) # 675.

 

1) Transperensi PNG i sapotim Australia

Updated 5 November 2012, 21:20 AEST

Transparency International Papua New Guinea itok emi wanbel wantem tingting blong Australia long stopim ol PNG pipal husat isave stilim moni blong publik long baem ol haus na bisnis long Australia.

Long wik igo pinis Australia gavman i bin tokim PNG gavman olsem  Australia  bai i noken givim ol visa  moa igo long ol Papua New Guinean citizen husat i usim korapsen moni long investim long Australia.

Papua New Guinea Praim Minista, Peter O’Neill i tok em gutpela long mekimsave long ol lidaman blong PNG i mekim korapsen pasin na baem ol samting oa statim ol wok bisnis blong ol long ol siti blong Australia.

Deputy oa  Namba-tu Chairperson blong Transparency International PNG, Gale Agoni itok tingting blong Australia emi wanpla gutpla tingting stret.http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/tokpisin/2012-11-05/transperensi-png-i-sapotim-australia/1041560

2) PNG PM i laik stopim Australian ikonomis

Postim 5 November 2012, 21:05 AEST

Caroline Tiriman

Long  Papua New Guinea, ol belheve na kros  long ol wok blong Board blong PNG Sustainable Development Program Ltd nau igo bagarap olgeta.

Oli bin statim PNG Sustainable Development Program long kisim na lukautim ol shea blong  BHP wantem Ok Tedi copper mine.

Nau PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill itok, taem i kamap pinis we  BHP Billition imas givim despla tripla wok blong boad igo long PNG.

Long wik igo pinis, Australian economist Prof  Ross Garnaut, em BHP-ibin makim olsem siaman blong PNGSDP, ibin lusim wok blong en, tasol pastem long despla emi bin tok olsem sampla politisian blong PNG bai nap seksek long kisim ol samting blong BHP em kos blong ol istap olsem 1.4 billion dollars na bai oli no nap larim long mekim ol wok divelopman bihaen taem.

Mr O’Neill ibin tokim palaman olsem bikpla askim blong en olsem BHP imas larim PNG long makim ol bod memba istap iet.

Now that is a fair call by the leader of a country that is concerned about the management of millions of millions of kina by foreigners on behalf of our people.  They need to be accountable.  These are not funds that belong to BHP anymore.  This does not belong to a few directors of that board anymore.http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/tokpisin/2012-11-05/png-pm-i-laik-stopim-australian-ikonomis/1041552

3) Vanuatu voutas i wari long korapsan

Updated 5 November 2012, 16:27 AEST

Caroline Tiriman

Ol pipal blong Vanuatu nau i sidaon wantem bikpla wari bihaenim ileksan long wonem oli tok  ibin gat planti korapsan ibin kamap long ileksan long wik igo pinis.

Vanuatu elections in a polling station

Ol Vanuatu pipal i wari olsem korapsan ibin bagarapim ileksan

Despla wari blong ol i kamap, long wankaen taem ol nius itok care taker praim minista, Sato Kilman iwok long redi long kamapim wanpla kolisan gavman long kantri.

Ol ripot ikam long Vanuatu itok sampla kendidet husat ibin lusim ileksan wantem tu sampla kendidet husat ibin win bai go long kot long trinde long askim kot long lukluk gut ken long ol rilsat blong ileksan.

Igat sampla wari tu olsem planti palaman memba bifo ibin baem vout blong ol pipal long ileksan.

Lopez Adams, emi wanpla lida blong ol yuth egens korapsan long Vanuatu.

 4) Papuan group says one of its leaders killed by Indonesian military

Posted at 06:34 on 05 November, 2012 UTC

A Papuan separatist group, the West Papua National Committee, or KNPB, says one of its leaders has been killed by Indonesian security forces.

The group’s chairman, Victor Yeimo, says Paul Horis was killed by Indonesian special forces on Sunday, while another member is seriously hurt in hospital.

He says on Saturday a member of the Regional Parliament in Merauke, Peter Katem, was beaten and tortured by the Indonesian military in Merauke.

Other members of the group have been arrested for making or storing bombs – a claim Mr Yeimo dismisses, saying the KNPB is committed to a peaceful campaign for the right to self-determination.

The group has been a prime target of the Indonesian security forces over the past several months.

Radio New Zealand International

5) Australia turns away PNG investors using ‘corrupt money’

By Online Editor
12:04 pm GMT+12, 05/11/2012, Papua New GuineaPNG citizens have been barred from using ‘corrupt money’ to invest in Australia in a move welcomed by the Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill.

Up to 100 PNG citizens own property in the northern Australian city of Cairns and there have been allegations Australia is used to launder PNG money.

PNG’s Prime Minister Peter O’Neill says the decision is already having an impact.

“I think some of our leaders have already been affected by that,” he said.

“That information was given to me because the Australian government wanted to highlight they are taking this position.”

He says it’s about time, some of his country’s leaders and its corrupt citizens who have money in Cairns deserve not to be welcomed into Australia.

SOURCE: RADIO AUSTRALIA/PACNEWS

6) Prince Charles, Camilla Arrive In PNG
Traditional cultural performances greet Royal couple

 

By Gorethy Kenneth

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, Nov. 5, 2012) – Papua New Guinea is on the International spotlight right now as the heir to the Throne of England Prince Charles accompanied by his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall Camilla Parker Bowles complete their Pacific tour in the country today.

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall who stepped off the Royal Australian Air Force plane at the Jackson’s International Airport tarmac on Saturday evening bring with them “greetings from the Queen of England”, Queen Elizabeth II.

They have until today in Port Moresby to continue their Pacific tour and will visit two most important places – Haus Ruth and the Hohola Development Centre.

Yesterday they visited the Adventure Park at 14-Mile and Boera village outside of Port Moresby with separate but vital programs.

The Royal Highnesses are here at the request of Her Majesty the Queen, Head of State of Papua New Guinea and Head of the Commonwealth, to mark a truly historic event in Her Majesty’s life – her Diamond Jubilee of her reign.

They arrived to a rousing welcome, a 21-gun salute and traditional and cultural performances in Port Moresby on Saturday.

They were met by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato, National Events Minister Justin Tkatchenko, NCD Governor Powes Parkop, Chief Secretary Manasupe Zurenuoc and Foreign Affairs Secretary Ambassador Lucy Bogari.

Papua New Guinea Defence Force Commander Brigadier General Francis Agwi led Prince Charles to a Royal Guard of Honour to inspecting the PNGDF and Police band. Prince Charles saluted the Queen’s and the Regimental Colours as he passed by inspecting the Royal Guard on Saturday.

Prince Charles was later invested with the insignia of a Grand Companion of the Order of Logohu — an honour which carries the title of chief — by Governor-General Sir Michael Ogio at the Airways Hotel.

The Order of Logohu — Motuan for Bird of Paradise — is part of a new honours system introduced in 2005, the nation’s 30th anniversary year, which recognises the high achievement of individuals.

The Duchess of Cornwall was presented with the insignia of a Companion of the Order of the Star of Melanesia and the Royal couple also received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee commemorative medal from Governor- General Sir Michael Ogio. Yesterday, more than 5000 residents of Port Moresby braved the hot sun to attend the ecumenical church service at the Sir John Guise stadium.

 

PNG Post-Courier: http://www.postcourier.com.pg/

7) K100 gold coin presented to Prince of Wales

By Online Editor
3:16 pm GMT+12, 05/11/2012, Papua New GuineaA K100 (US$48) gold coin was presented to the Prince of Wales as a special Papua New Guinean gift to commemorate his mother Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee.

Produced by the Bank of PNG, the coin carried the visiting royal couple’s image and was presented to him in Port Moresby

A K50 (US$24) silver coin was also presented to Prince Charles.

He was further presented a locally-produced portrait of himself made with the use of wool.

Artist Oko Fumi, from Lufa in Eastern Highlands, said he had been working on his bilum art for nearly five weeks.

The royal entourage’s visit to 14-Mile Adventure Park included the naming of a locally-grown orchid after the prince’s wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, who was accompanying him on this trip. The orchid is called Dendrobium Camilla.

Prince Charles also witnessed the presentation of Diamond Jubilee stamps and the world’s largest first day cover that contained 50 stamps and measured 11 inches by 17 inches.

The new Diamond Jubilee stamps come in six different values – the K8 stamp is purple, the K7 stamp is brown and has the image of the Queen and Prince Charles, the 50t stamps show the prince’s image while the 25t carries a picture of the visiting royal couple.

The visiting couple is also found on the lime-coloured K100 stamp alongside the Queen and Prince Philip.

Prince Charles’ image is also found on the K120 stamp.

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

8) AUTONOMOUS BOUGAINVILLE NIUS:

311012PM FULL SUPPORT
By Aloysius Laukai

Prime Minister PETER O’NEIL says that the national government will fully support the Autonomous Bougainville Government with funding to come out from its financial problems it is facing today.

He said that the O’NEIL/DION government was committed to the peace process on Bougainville and has already released the much talked about ONE MILLION KINA for Bougainville.

The Prime Minister made these comments when answering to a series of questions raised by the newly elected Regional member for Bougainville, HON JOE LERA who wanted to know if Export levies for Bougainville currently collected by East New Britain province through exports of Bougainville’s Cocoa and Copra can be paid back to Bougainville.

MR.LERA said that Bougainville’s sweat were not being felt on Bougainville because all these exports were done in East New Britain Province.

He said every week 50 to 100 Bougainville Businessmen travel to Rabaul to do shopping at the Hardwares and Wholesales as Bougainville still has to develop these infrastructures.

The member said that all Bougainville monies end up to places like RABAUL.LAE and PORT MORESBY in this way.

Prime Minister in his response said that he would he would be talking with the Minister for Treasury and would respond to him in writing.

He stressed the need for Bougainville to be supported by the government.

281012 Former PM’s arrive in Buka
By Tapo Tovilu

Two former Prime Ministers of Papua New Guinea Sir Julius Chan and farther of the Nation Sir Michael Somare arrived last Friday in Buka.
Their trip was to attend the funeral service of Late Member for North Bougainville in the Pre Independence National Parliament, Sir Donatus Mola who died last week.
Present at the airport to receive both members was ABG president Dr John Momis and his cabinet.
While giving his welcome Momis said that another former member who helped to build Papua New Guinea and Bougainville had passed.
He said the late Donatus was a colleague and a friend to all and his passing was a loss to Bougainville.
The two former members departed at 2pm after the funeral service held at Hahela Parish.

271012SOUTH BOUGAINVILLE LEADING
By Aloysius Laukai

The UNDP Chief technical officer on Bougainville, TONY AGYENTA has praised the people of South Bougainville for supporting their youths and minimizing criminal activities in South Bougainville.
He told NEW DAWN FM in Arawa that South Bougainville a branded notorious criminal haven has changed and is now focusing on developing their areas.
He was speaking after returning from South Bougainville yesterday.
MR. AGYENTA said that uncontrolled drunkards on the streets now can be seen in Buka and Arawa towns whilst in the South the chiefs are working with their Police and former combatants to stop the brewing of homebrew in their communities.
The UNDP Chief Technical Officer also questioned why more bottle shops have been approved in Buka town in the last six months.
He said the ABG must do something to reverse this as it was only creating problems for the region.
He said whilst the UNDP was trying to assist the government to improve law and order, the liquor commissioner was approving Bottle shops everywhere resulting in the rise of illegal activities.
New Dawn FM was unable to talk to the Liquor Commissioner regarding this story.

271012CONNECTING TO GOVT
By Aloysius Laukai

The UNDP Chief Technical Advisor on Bougainville ANTHONY AGYENTA yesterday told participants of the South Bougainville Development and Technical Meeting to make sure that their work is connected to the government network.

He was explaining on the processes that can connect the districts to the headquaters in Buka.

MR. AGYENTA said that if the head of the government was strong and the legs were weak it would naturally collapes.

He told the partticapants that this training was to help then strenghten the legs of the government so that it can be able to stand.

MR. AGYENTA said this can be done by strengthening the cordinating structure of the administration.

He said that Properly planning,collecting and storing data base and monitoring is the way the districts must develop their capacity to support the Government and its administration of which they were serving in the districts.

He stressed that when people are not connected to their government they will simply lose confidence in their government which in turn could lead to more problems for the region.

MR. AGYENTA said that UNDP will support the administration to build the capacity needed to support the Autonomous Bougainville Government. 

271012LOCALS STAYED BACK
By Aloysius Laukai

The leaders in South Bougainville yesterday questioned why Bougainvilleans in the Bougainville administration cannot visit the districts.

The Executive Manager for Buin district JOHN ITANU made these remarks when thanking a Sepik man, MOSES KOLIWAN who was facilitating the meeting in Bana yesterday.

In his closing remarks, MR. ITANU questioned why Bougainvilleans from the administration are only excited if the meeting is held in Port Moresby and other centres and not within the region.

He said that comments by certain staff that the notice for the meeting was given to them late was not true.

He said meetings orgarnized by the administration for district staff was an opportunity for them to meet the headquater staff and such attitude by them is not acceptable.

The meeting was officially closed by the newly appointed Minister for Culture and Tourism, the Hon. ROSE PIHEI

271012 WORKSHOP ENDS ON HIGH NOTE
By Aloysius Laukai

The South Bougainville Administration Development and Technical meeting ended yesterday on high note.

The two-day workshop gathered Executive Managers and their team leaders in the Four districts in South Bougainville from Buin, Siwai Torokina and the host district Bana to look at ways in which they can work together in the districts and how they can link to the administration at the headquaters.

The meeting was organized by the Bougainville administration with financial and technical support from UNDP on Bougainville.

This meeting was also attended by NGO groups in the district and including officers from the Deputy Administrator Administration’s office in Buka.

The meeting was the first since the Commissioner for South Bougainville resigned two years ago.

Amongst the issues the group discussed they were very vocal on the need for the Bougainville Administration to appoint a commissioner for the South Bougainville Region.

They said that as long as the position remains vacant the people of South Bougainville will continue to miss out on much needed services.

The group also questioned why this has taken so long for the administration to act.

The meeting also discussed ways to minimize the cost of carrying out their activities including approval of funds by the Headquaters.
.
A detailed reccomendation would be made available to the Administration and the media on Monday.

Pictured after the meeting are MR. EDWARD KENAI UNDP Development Planning and Cordination Associate, MR. ANTHONY AGYENTA UNDP Chief Technical Advisor, MR. JOE NORO(senior) Executive Manager Siwai District, MRS. ROSE PIHEI ABG Minister for Culture and Tourism.

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261012 Ona speaks out
By Tapo Tovilu

The son of one of Bougainville’s grate leaders, Francis Ona has come out openly on his position on the issue of the planed reopening of the Panguna mine.
In a press release yesterday the Minister for Planning in the Meekamui Government Stanley Ona openly stated that his people and the Government of Meekamui will not allow any scheme to re-open the Panguna mine.
He also added that current media reports of the discussions into the re-opening of the Panguna mine are damaging to all parties and unless serious conditions are met there will be no mining of Panguna.
He says that if the ABG would like to re-open the Panguna mine serious negotiations and discussions must be made first.
He added that many lives were lost in their struggle for human rights and their fight for freedom and such should be avoided in the future.

261012 Work force support needed
By Tapo Tovilu

After last week’s mass recruitment exercise by Mining giant New Crest Mining, there is a need for more support for Bougainville’s young human resource.
From the results of the recruitment exercise, close to 300 applicants were turned down due to their lack of experience in the field.
A senior public servant who wishes to remain anonymous says that this clearly shows that the trained human resources of the region need help.
He explained that it wasn’t a damaging comment but with the situation in the region the ABG must do more to support our work force in terms of more training and work experience.
He says that though it is up to the individual to have sufficient training and work experience, the base line is that the worker will in turn help build the ABG thus the government is obliged to help in the workers build-up.
He added that the huge turn up was a clear example that many of the educated and trained elite would like to work for the rebuilding of the region.
He called on the relevant authorities to look into the matter and provide adequate support for the current unemployed human resource for Bougainville.

261012 PUARA SAYS COOL DOWN
By Aloysius Laukai

The CEO for Human Resources Division of the Autonomous Bougainville Government, PUARA KAMARIKI is calling on former public servants to calm down as the next Risk Allowance payments process are in progress.
He told New Dawn FM this afternoon that as soon as cheques are printed in Port Moresby, a team of officials will come to Buka to make the payments.
MR. KAMARIKI was responding to calls by former public servants that the second payment was very slow and should be speeded up.
He said although payments were to be paid in June and due to the National elections, these payments were further delayed.
MR. KAMARIKI hopes to get the new date from the department of Personal Management this week.
He said names have been finalized for payment and he hopes all former workers who risked their lives during the crisis would be fully compensated.

9) Solomon Islands Minister explains value of our Tuna

By Online Editor
3:11 pm GMT+12, 05/11/2012, Solomon IslandsThe recent fishing access agreement signed between the Ministry of Fisheries and Korea has increased its value to $16 million, Solomon Islands minister Alfred Giro says.

In an exclusive interview with Solomon Star, Giro said this was a substantial increase from last year’s agreement.

“We believe we have set an increased benchmark rate for our Vessel Day Scheme(VDS) as set out by Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) at a minimum rate of US$5000 (SBD$35,500).

But Ghiro declined to release the exact figures of the increased VDS rate agreed upon at the recent talks with Korea.

“We don’t want to disclose the amount since we are yet to negotiate with other fishing nations like New Zealand, Japan and Taiwan,” he said.

Asked whether the $40 million access agreement signed with Korea truly reflects the value of our tuna, the minister said “not really”.

“This value is only for one particular country and does not really reflect the true value of our tuna.

“A combination of other bilateral access agreements could reflect on the value when all the values combined.”

When asked what the total number of fishing efforts the country has for the past year and this year, Giro said last year the country has over 2700 VDS and that had increased to over 3,000 this year.

“This is a good indication as the country continues to show improvement in its fisheries sector and had gained more VDS, which will really benefit the country to maximise its tuna value,” he said.

In simple calculations, since the minimum VDS rate is US$5, 000, the country should be earning estimated revenue of SBD$90m (US$13.5m) last year alone.

And this year the country should expect to earn SBD$106m (US$15m).

An amount that is expected to increase further since the ministry has confirmed it has increased its minimum VDS rate above the minimum rate put out by PNA of US$5,000.

But the Solomon Star understands the ministry is charging different VDS rates for different fishing nations above the minimum rate.

SOURCE: SOLOMON STAR/PACNEWS

10) Horsetrading Underway As Vanuatu Election Results Trickle Out
Preliminary results seem to show edge for Kilman’s party

 

By Ricky Binihi

PORT VILA, Vanuatu (Vanuatu Daily Post, Nov. 2, 2012) – Unofficial 2012 Election results have nearly all arrived and now the main political parties are courting each other with the intention of forming a government before Christmas.

The Daily Post has been told that preliminary negotiations are now underway. It will not be before the end of the week when all the Presidents of the political parties that fielded candidates on October 30 should start arriving in the capital.

The party of incumbent care taker Prime Minister Sato Kilman, People’s Progressive Party could be leading talks to form a government with his political allies from 2010 while Vanua’aku Pati President Edward Natapei and the Union of Moderate Parties President Serge Vohor want to counter that with a more lucrative deal.

There were some disappointments and triumphs in this election from the unofficial results the Daily Post is receiving.

For instance, the President of Vanuatu Democratic Party veteran politician Maxime Carlot Korman who has not lost a seat since Vanuatu first went to the polls in 1979 has lost the seat on Efate. And it would seem that no women candidate from of the 17 constituencies has been able to win a seat in the tenth Vanuatu Legislature.

[PIR editor’s note: According to another story in the Vanuatu Daily Post “Interim Prime Minister Sato Kilman’s People Progressive Party (PPP) will be lodging election petitions in four of Vanuatu’s 17 constituencies.” It is alleged that cases of fraud and election malpractice may have occurred.]

On the other hand the President of the Vanuatu Liberal Party, Mr Willie Jimmy Tapangarua has created Vanuatu history by being the first ever former MP to retain his seat after spending some years outside Parliament and as Ambassador to China.

In 2008 the Tongoa strong man polled 616 votes which was the ninth position in the 6-seats Port Vila constituency but two days ago he managed to secure the last seat in Port Vila according to unofficial results.

Meanwhile negotiations for the number game will go all the way to wire because the Daily Post has found out that the numbers from the current care taker government coalition partners are almost even to that of the parties that are not in government.

In all honesty PM Kilman’s coalition partners have edged their former Opposition numbers. With the new elected MPs, particularly from Independents, Daily Post believes the numbers will be even which means some arm twisting before Parliament meets to elect a Prime Minister.

 

Vanuatu Daily Post: http://www.vanuatudaily.com

11) Bainimarama Calls Election Skeptics ‘False Prophets’
PM again commits to democratic elections in 2014

By Tevita Vuibau

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, Nov. 4, 2012) – Elements in society spreading rumors there will be no democratic elections in 2014 have been labeled “false prophets” by Prime Minister, Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama.

Speaking at the opening of the 2012 Lomaiviti Day, Commodore Bainimarama did not mince his words saying many of these “false prophets” were politicians in previous governments.

“Ko ni sa baci rogoca na veivakadiloi sa basika tiko e na vuku ni ituvatuva au sa kacivaka oti me baleta na Veidigidigi Levu me na vakayacori e na yabaki 2014.”

(“You may have started hearing rumours about the arrangements being made for the General Elections in 2014.”)

“Oqo na nodra Cakacaka ni veivakacalai kei na veivakasesei na “parofita vakailasu” ka levu vei ira qo na dau ni politiki makawa.”

(“This is the work of false prophets trying to mislead and confuse people, and many of them (false prophets) are former politicians,” he said.)

Commodore Bainimarama then proceeded to reassure all in Fiji and the world over that the country would have democratic elections come 2014.

“Au via vakadeitaka ga vei keda nikua, ka me rogoca ko Viti kei Vuravura, ni Veidigidigi Levu e na Yacori e na yabaki 2014.”

“I want to assure all of us here today and I want all of Fiji and the world to hear as well that we will have National Elections in 2014,” he said.

Commodore Bainimarama said with the voting age reduced from 22 to 18, the youth of Fiji would have a voice in choosing their leaders.

He also called on parents and guardians to educate their children in order to allow them to pick a government worthy of taking Fiji beyond 2014.

Fiji Times Online: http://www.fijitimes.com.

12) Fiji PM promise 2014 election

By Online Editor
09:05 am GMT+12, 05/11/2012, Fiji
 Elements in society spreading rumours there will be no democratic elections in 2014 have been labeled “false prophets” by  Fiji’s Prime Minister, Commodore  Frank  Bainimarama.

Speaking at the opening of the 2012 Lomaiviti Day, Commodore Bainimarama did not mince his words saying many of these “false prophets” were politicians in previous governments.

“You may have started hearing rumours about the arrangements being made for the General Elections in 2014.”

“This is the work of false prophets trying to mislead and confuse people, and many of them (false prophets) are former politicians,” he said.

Commodore Bainimarama then proceeded to reassure all in Fiji and the world over that the country would have democratic elections come 2014.

“I want to assure all of us here today and I want all of Fiji and the world to hear as well that we will have National Elections in 2014,” he said.

Commodore Bainimarama said with the voting age reduced from 22 to 18, the youth of Fiji would have a voice in choosing their leaders.

He also called on parents and guardians to educate their children in order to allow them to pick a government worthy of taking Fiji beyond 2014.

SOURCE: FIJI TIMES/PACNEWS

13) PM’s attack is unfair, says Fiji’s Constitution chair Prof Ghai

By Online Editor
09:02 am GMT+12, 05/11/2012, FijiFiji’s Constitution Commission chairman, Professor Yash Ghai has labelled Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s attack on Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi for his consultancy with the Commission as unfair

Prof Ghai in a statement said the Prime Minister criticised him and the commission for improper and deceitful conduct and these are serious charges.

A constitution covers a wide variety of issues, some of considerable complexity. Members of a small commission such as ours cannot be expected to have sufficient knowledge of all the issues on which they have to make decisions,” he said.

“The Decree wisely provides for the commission to seek the assistance of experts on specialised issues. The experts can be local or foreign—we have had both. We have benefited greatly from the experience and research of local experts, some of whom were deeply involved in the preparation of the People’s Charter, and some opposed to it.”

“It is not our practice to make public announcements when we appoint a consultant (nor are we required to do so). But we certainly do not hide our experts. If we are asked, as was the case with Ratu Joni’s appointment, we have not withheld information.”

Prof Ghai said they often invited government, military, academic and civic organisations to workshops which they organised around topics of the experts and they also tried to organise a public event in the form of a seminar with foreign experts, to educate and engage the people—with very considerable success.

“Members of the government departments, including the Prime Minister’s Office, have attended our internal workshops where Ratu Joni was present.”

“When we were considering which local experts could help the Commission, we all supported Ratu Joni’s participation. That is hardly surprising,” he quipped. “He is well known locally and internationally, not only for his wide knowledge and experience of the law, but of social and political affairs, a deep understanding of traditional cultures, and for his wisdom. He is admired for his strong sense of fairness.”

“None of the local commissioners, despite their other excellent qualifications, has practical or academic experience of law. Questions of local law crop up all the time as we decide on the content of the constitution.”

“The lack of submissions from relevant government bodies has made expert guidance on law more necessary, a task that Ratu Joni fulfilled admirably.”

“When I first approached him for his assistance, he agreed readily, and indicated that he did not need a consultancy or a fee. It was under pressure from us that he accepted a consultancy, no different from other consultancies. He also made it clear that he was intending to make his own submission and asked us if this would create a conflict. The commission considered and concluded that there would be no conflict.”

He said contractual arrangements for the consultancy do not provide for an automatic payment for 30 days. This is the maximum period, but payments are made only for the days he worked for us.

He neither claimed nor was paid for the day he came to the public hearing. Ratu Joni’s position with the Commission was labelled untenable because he appeared before the commissioners as part of the delegation from the chiefly island of Bau which supported the concept of a Christian State.

“Fiji is a small society and people function in several capacities and contexts.

Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi is not only a legal practitioner with some years’ experience, but a Fijian who has served in the public service and the judiciary as well as on the boards of civil society organisations concerned with human rights.”

“He is also a traditional leader and it was in that role that he appeared before the Commission. Ratu Joni’s views about Fiji as a secular, multicultural and tolerant society are a matter of public record, but he also respected what the people of Bau wanted.”

“These contradictions are not uncommon in a country in transition and are part of the challenges the Commission faces in drafting a new Constitution. Throughout our work with Ratu Joni, we have found him a person of great integrity, knowledge and wisdom,” he concluded.

Meanwhile, the Fiji government has rejected the claim by the Chairman of the Constitutional Commission, Professor Yash Ghai, that the Prime Minister’s criticism of the appointment of Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi was “unfair.”

In a statement, Bainimarama repeated his insistence that Ratu Joni’s appointment as a consultant to the Commission was in breach of the decree that established its terms of reference.

“Professor Ghai knows that the decree stipulates that any staff or consultants engaged by the Commission must abide by its non-negotiable principles and be impartial. Those non-negotiable principles include a secular state, which Ratu Joni opposed when he lent his name to a submission calling for a Christian state”, he said.

Bainimarama noted Professor Ghai’s statement that Ratu Joni was not paid his consultancy fee on the day he was party to the submission on a Christian state.

“This is neither here nor there as far as the Government is concerned. It also demonstrates that there is no transparency in the appointment of consultants by the Commission. The fact is that Ratu Joni was engaged as a consultant on October the 1st. He was party to a submission against one of the non-negotiable provisions on October 12th and continued as a consultant until the end of the month. This breached the terms of the decree and there is no other way to portray it,” the Prime Minister added.

SOURCE: FIJI LIVE/PACNEWS

14) Ghai clears the air

Tevita Vuibau
Monday, November 05, 2012

THE Constitution Commission has clarified that the decision to hire Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi as a consultant was neither improper nor deceitful conduct on its part.

And it has also refuted Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama’s claim that Ratu Joni was a paid consultant when he was part of a delegation that made a submission to the Constitution Commission which contravened one of the non-negotiable principles.

In a statement issued yesterday, Commission chairman Prof Yash Ghai clarified misconceptions relating to the employment of Ratu Joni by the commission.

Prof Ghai said the commission employed Ratu Joni as a consultant not only because of his vaunted legal expertise but also because of his integrity, morals and strong sense of fairness.

“When I first approached him for his assistance, he agreed readily and indicated that he did not need a consultancy or a fee,” Prof Ghai said.

“It was under pressure from us that he accepted a consultancy, no different from other consultancies.

“The contractual arrangements for the consultancy do not provide for an automatic payment for 30 days.

“This is the maximum period but payments are made only for the days he worked for us. He neither claimed nor was paid for the day he came to the public hearing.”

Prof Ghai said Ratu Joni also made it clear that he was intending to make a submission, a fact the commission had considered before concluding there would be no conflict.

He said Ratu Joni acted in many different positions in his career, with his views about Fiji as a secular, multi-cultural and tolerant society a matter of public record.

He said Ratu Joni also respected what the people of Bau wanted.

And that, Prof Ghai said, was the reason he was part of the Kubuna Confederacy delegation calling for a Christian State.

“These contradictions are not uncommon in a country in transition and are part of the challenges the commission faces in drafting a new constitution,” he said.

Prof Ghai also said it was not the practice of the commission to make public announcements when appointing consultants.

“But we certainly do not hide our experts. If we are asked, as was the case with Ratu Joni’s appointment, we have not withheld information,” Prof Ghai said

“Members of the government departments, including the Prime Minister’s Office, have attended our internal workshops where Ratu Joni was present.

“Throughout our work with Ratu Joni, we have found him a person of great integrity, knowledge and wisdom,” Prof Ghai said.

In a statement yesterday, Commodore Bainimarama repeated his insistence that Ratu Joni’s appointment as a consultant to the commission was in breach of the decree that established its terms of reference.

“The fact is that Ratu Joni was engaged as a consultant on October the 1st. He was party to a submission against one of the non-negotiable provisions on October 12th and continued as a consultant until the end of the month. This breached the terms of the decree and there is no other way to portray it,” Commodore Bainimarama said.http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=216371

15) Key Fiji NGO supports Ratu Joni in spat with the interim regime over consultations

Posted at 06:34 on 05 November, 2012 UTC

The head of a civil society group involved with Fiji’s constitution consultations says it is unavoidable that Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi has found himself in a dual role over consultations on the new constitution.

The deposed vice president is at the centre of the latest row between the Constitution Commission and regime leader Commodore Frank Bainimarama.

The interim Prime Minister has scolded the commission for employing Ratu Joni as a consultant when he had also made a submission as a high chief calling for a Christian state, breaching one of the regime’s decrees.

Reverend Akuila Yabaki of the Citizen’s Constitutional Forum says the regime has targeted Ratu Joni who is a highly trained lawyer as well as a high chief.

“It should be understandable that he should contend with such a dual personality and having to manage such a contradiction in the current situation which is still divided. I think from civil society’s perspective we would like to support Ratu Joni in the work that he is trying to do.”

Reverend Akuila Yabaki of Fiji’s Citizen’s Constitutional Forum.

Radio New Zealand International

16) BRED Bank opens in Fiji

By Online Editor
08:56 am GMT+12, 05/11/2012, FijiSaturday marked another milestone in our financial system. A new European bank opened its doors in Fiji.

The 9.30am opening saw a large crowd already gathered outside MHCC in Suva to be one of the very first to experience what BRED Bank had to offer.

The BRED Bank flagship branch in MHCC was officially opened by the Reserve Bank of Fiji Governor, Barry Whiteside.

Whiteside said: “Not since Bank of Hawaii entered our financial system in 1993, have we had a bank start from ‘scratch’ and be challenged to build its operations from the ground up.

“The opening of a new commercial bank in Fiji continues the new era in financial sector development in Fiji.
“The people of Fiji are the beneficiaries of this development and I understand that they are in for a real French banking experience.”

BRED Bank has injected a capital investment of approximately $40 million (US$22.4 million) and plans to open other branches around Fiji.

It was also noted the bank had plans to establish satellite branches in close proximity to large residential and industrial/commercial areas, as well as kiosks in shopping centres.

Whiteside believes investments like BRED Bank served to fuel and drive the increasing positive sentiment in our economy.

BRED Bank chief executive, Satish Deb, said the BRED’s presence in Fiji resulted from its interest, expansion and success within the Pacific region.

“Fiji presented BRED with the required elements for establishing a banking operation,” he said.

“This includes a good-sized and well-developed market, a well-established financial system, good communications and infrastructure and human resource capabilities.

“BRED was also confident with entrusting its capital investment in Fiji in the hands of totally local management.”
Deb said they had come a long way in a very short time in establishing a bank.

“We are very passionate about BRED Bank because we have created it with a culture and mindset to provide better banking for Fiji and we will conduct our business with that pledge.”

Governor Whiteside pointed out that entry into our banking system was quite deregulated.

“However, I must say that while anyone can apply to establish a bank in Fiji, they must meet our fairly comprehensive licensing requirements,” he said.

“This plays an integral role in ensuring we are dealing with reputable, tried and proven players.”

Whiteside said historically, we have had banks withdraw from the country for various reasons.

“Some contend this indicates the country is sufficiently banked,” he said.

“The Reserve Bank of Fiji, however, does not presently have a policy on limiting the number of players in the industry.

“We do like to ensure that those institutions that do come in are strong and have the appropriate backing to take them forward.”

Whiteside said in Fiji had well-entrenched players, which would make a new entrant’s task of generating adequate returns very challenging.

“But if a reputable entrant fronts up and meets the stipulated requirements, as BRED Bank has done, we will grant entry into our banking system.

“This is a deregulated market mechanism that promotes competition, productivity and efficiency.”.

SOURCE: FIJI SUN/PACNEWS

17) Bluesky Introduces Internet TV In Samoa
20 local, international channels delivered over broadband

By Lance Polu

APIA, Samoa (Talamua, Nov. 3, 2012) – Bluesky Samoa has launched Moana TV introducing over twenty local and international channels.

The Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) service is the latest technology in television service and is a limited service offered within the Bluesky’s broadband coverage area in both Upolu and Savaii islands.

In launching the service last night, CEO Aoe’e Adolfo Montenegro said the service uses Bluesky’s broadband network to deliver content to a digital set top box installed in subscribers’ homes and businesses.

“Moana TV is the first IPTV service not only in Samoa but the entire South Pacific,” he stated.

He said that the service is currently deployed in 50 test locations and will be rolled out in phases.

“In its first phase, it will only be available in selected areas including Apia urban through to Puipa’a on the west and through to Lauli’i on the East coast of Upolu and Siumu on Upolu’s South Coast. The service will be commercially available to residents and businesses in those areas in December. Additional areas in Upolu and coverage in Savaii are in the next roll out phase.”

Moana TV is the latest of BlueSky’s product innovations to hit the market.

“We continue to be committed to innovation and continuous improvement of our services to the people of Samoa,” said Aoe’e.

“This is just the beginning as we continue to work hard to extend coverage and to realize the potential of the technology which includes features like Video on Demand, personalized schedules and Digital Video recording,” he said.

The Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi congratulated BlueSky for the remarkable achievement and a milestone for Samoa.

“This latest product on offer in technology and innovation reaffirms that Government made the right decision in awarding Bluesky the tender less than two years ago, as the second telecommunications provider for Samoa,” the Prime Minister stated.

Talamua: http://talamua.com/index.php

18) Palau Prepares To Go To Polls On Tuesday
President Toribiong declares national holiday

By Aurea Gerundio-Dizon

KOROR, Palau (Island Times, Oct. 30, 2012) – President Toribiong has declared the National Election Day on November 6 to be a national holiday.

The president Wednesday issued executive order on this regard, calling the National Election Day as National Day of Democracy.

Meanwhile, the Palau Election Commission has sent out a total of 2,927 absentee ballots for the General elections. Absentee ballots must be received by the commission within seven days from the election for it to be valid for counting.

The commission also finalized polling places for the upcoming elections.

The polling place for Ngcheyangel voters will be at Bai ra Melengel, Bai ra Mengellakl for Ngarchelong, Ulimang Kuateleu for Ngaraard, Labk for Ngiwal, Bailechesau for Melekeok, Community Center El Ngara Ked for Ordomel and Oikull/Ngchesechang in Airai, Bai ra Obraod above Airai Office/Ngerusar Center for Ngerusar and Ngeruluobel/Ngetkib, Aimeliik Community Center for Aimeliik and Ngaremlengui Old Age Center for Ngaremlengui.

Ngatpang, Ngchesar, Ngardmau, Peleliu and Angaur will have their respective state offices as polling places.

In Koror, the polling place for voters from Ngermid will be at Bai ra Ngerbachesis, Bai ra Elangel for Ngerkesoal, Bai ra Ibelau for Ngarchemai, Osial ra Catholic Mission for Iyebukel/Idid, Ngarachamayong Cultural Center for Meketii, Dngeronger, Ikelau and Madalaii, Bai ra Ngedechibel for Ngerbeched, Youth Center el Ngara Skozio for Meyuns and Blai ra Taoch for Ngerkebesang.

Sonsorol and Hatohobei voters are considered absentee voters.

Central polling place are as follows: Ngarachamayong Cultural Center for Desbedall (Ngcheyangel, Ngarchelong, Ngaraard, Ngiwal, Melekeok and Ngchesar); PHS Spider Gym for Keukl (Ngardmau, Ngaremlengui, Ngatpang and Aimeliik); and PNOC Gym for Iouleldaob (Peleliu, Angaur, Sonsorol and Hatohobei).

19) Chique de bétel et tuberculose

Posté à 5 November 2012, 8:33 AEST

Pierre Riant

Quand on mastique de la noix de bétel, on crache. Et quand on crache, on contribue à la propagation de la tuberculose.

betel nut painting ABC 20121102

Pax Jakupa Junior avec son tableau ‘Woman Selling Betel Nut’ (Vendeuse de noix de bétel). (Credit: ABC)

Et à la saleté générale puisque les grands centres urbains de Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée sont zébrés de ces jets rouges crachés par les consommateurs de noix de bétel également associées aux cancers oraux.

Toutefois, pour de nombreuses familles papoues, la noix de bétel est une source de revenus non négligeable et sans impôt. Cette noix est aussi appelée ‘Green Gold’ (l’Or Vert).

Mais le gouverneur de la capitale, Powes Parkop, veut interdire la vente et la consommation de cette noix qui, selon lui, contribue à la propagation des maladies transmissibles ; une pratique non hygiénique qui ajoute aussi à la saleté des villes et met en danger la santé de tous les habitants.

C’est une déclaration devant le Parlement du ministre de la Santé, Michael Malabag, sur les maladies associées au style de vie qui a déclenché le débat dans le pays.  Powes Parkop.

PARKOP : « La tuberculose est de retour dans notre ville, comme le cancer et d’autres maladies transmises par l’air via les chiques de bétel et le jus que l’on crache ici et là. Et nous devons commencer à sensibiliser les gens sur les bonnes pratiques alimentaires, l’abus de l’alcool ou la chique de bétel. Ça, c’est de la médecine préventive et peut-être que les gens auront alors moins besoin d’aller à l’hôpital ou au médecin. »

Powes Parkop n’est pas seul dans sa lutte contre la noix de bétel. John Pundari, le ministre de l’Environnement, veut l’interdire dans tous les centres urbains.

PUNDARI : « Il faut l’interdire ! Qu’est-ce que la vie comparée aux chiques de bétel et à tous ces crachats dans les rues de Port Moresby. La vie vaut un peu plus que de mastiquer et cracher des noix de bétel. On est quand même au courant de la tuberculose résistant aux médicaments. Alors bien sûr, je m’inquiète de notre attitude et de cette population qui mastique et qui crache. Comment allons-nous contenir la maladie dans le pays. Il faut légiférer, il faut une loi interdisant les noix de bétel. »

Pour le dirigeant de l’opposition, Belden Namah, il faut faire de la prévention.

NAMAH : « Il faut éduquer la population, cette façon de vivre, nos attitudes. En Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée, c’est un problème d’attitude. Quand vous allez dans les hôpitaux, tous les lits sont cassés. Il y a des crachats de jus de bétel sur tous les murs. Pareil à l’hôpital général de Port Moresby. Nous avons un sérieux problème d’attitude en Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée. Alors comment faire pour changer ? Il faut les convaincre de mener une vie saine. Mieux vaut prévenir que guérir. » http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/french/2012-11-05/chique-de-bétel-et-tuberculose/1040968

20) Pacific Islands contributes only 0.03% to Greenhouse Gas Emission

Posted on November 5, 2012 – 3:41pm |

Although islanders have done little to contribute to the cause – less than 0.03% of current global greenhouse gas emissions – they are among the first to be exposed.

Most islands are experiencing climate change impacts on community livelihoods, infrastructure, water supply, coastal and forest ecosystems, fisheries, agriculture, and human health. The consequences of sea level rise, sea temperature increases, ocean acidification, altered rainfall patterns, and overall temperature rise will be increasingly felt.

Climate change is expected to result in a variety of environmental, social, and economic effects on island states, including threats to natural habitat, loss of habitable and agricultural land, coastal erosion, increased intensity of tropical storms, occurrence of invasive and pest species, decreased food and water security, and adverse impacts on human health with particular acuity in small island economies.

Climate change is already disproportionally affecting the islands of the Pacific.http://www.dailypost.vu/content/pacific-islands-contributes-only-003-greenhouse-gas-emission

21) Brazil 2014 to be screened across Oceania

By Online Editor
3:24 pm GMT+12, 05/11/2012, Brazil The Oceania Football Confederation says the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil will be screened across all territories of Oceania, excluding New Zealand.

The OFC has confirmed its partner MP & Silva, a leading international media rights company, has secured a deal with SBS Australia to televise the world cup.

The package offers all 64 matches from Brazil live and daily highlights of 45 minutes, as well as all FIFA tournaments between 2012 and 2014, including the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup in Brazil, 2013 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Tahiti and 2012 FIFA Futsal World Cup in Thailand.

The SBS Australia is able to offer the coverage as the licensee for FIFA media rights in Australia and Oceania during the 2011-2014 cycle.

The OFC General Secretary Tai Nicholas says it’s fantastic people in the region will again get the chance to watch the world’s biggest footballing event.

He says this can only be good for the game because young people will be able to see their heroes in action and have something to aspire to.

He also added they are committed to seeing an increase in football exposure across the Pacific.

SOURCE: RNZI/PACNEWS

22) Courageous Kurukuru succumb to Russia

By Online Editor
3:30 pm GMT+12, 05/11/2012, Solomon IslandsThe Kurukuru, the Solomon Islands national futsal team, will hope for better results in their two remaining group matches at the FIFA Futsal World Cup after falling to a potent Russian side 16-0 in their opening game.

The contest was never likely to be about who was going to win but rather how many the Russians could put past the team they humiliated four years ago with a world-record 31-2 scoreline. Once again, Russia reigned supreme but signs that the Kurukuru are on the rise were aplenty throughout the match.

“I am proud of the boys for not giving up today – the Russians were a class apart from us but the fighting spirit within the team did not let up until the final whistle. The result is not in our favour but we expected it to be tough so we managed our objectives for this game,” Kurukuru coach Dickson Kadau said.

“Obviously, there is a lot more work that we need to do to be on par with the best of the world but in our own way the boys achieved something today. We need to work on defending all around the court and properly mark opponents because the game is now more dynamic than ever – these are important lessons for us today and we will improve.”

With the help of their naturalised Brazilians, Russia were up 8-0 in the first half and a further eight strikes in the second spell helped them to the biggest scoreline in the competition so far and also to the top of the Group F table. Elder Lima top scored with seven goals while Sergey Servgeev and Alexander Fukin both got on the scoresheet twice.

Kurukuru showed some control in the opening five minutes but the Russians soon began to take over the game. While some of the flare of the island boys was on display, getting past the Russian defensive wall proved an insurmountable challenge. The Russians continued to drive them down with press forward and made it 3-0 after four minutes with goals in quick succession.

From there, the concentration levels of the Kurukuru appeared to wane and mistakes began to creep in. The Russians capitalised on the lapses to add five more goals for a very comfortable first-half lead.
The second half opened in similar fashion to the first with Russia quickly gaining the upper hand and using their well-versed movements to break down the Kurukuru defence. Sergeev needed just one minute to score and the situation went further downhill as efforts from his teammates took the game well beyond reach of the Kurukuru.

The Oceania champions displayed greater determination in the dying minutes with captain Elliot Ragomo and Micah Lea’alafa both exciting the crowd with breakaway runs but the Russians ensured a clean sheet finish with class defending at the back.

The Kurukuru now need to win both their remaining games in the competition to guarantee them a place in the second round. South Americans Colombia are the next team on their schedule and that clash will be followed by an encounter with Guatemala.

Kadau believes the Russian game will be an invaluable experience for the Kurukuru as they look ahead to their next two challenges.

“The lessons from today will be vital if we want to win our remaining group matches. Both at a player and management level we need to correct our errors and move on with renewed objectives and determination,” he said.
SOURCE: OFC/PACNEWS

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