Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 865

MELANESIA:

1) Melanesians prepare for annual meeting

Avinesh Gopal
Tuesday, September 17, 2013

THE Melanesian community in Fiji has started preparing for their annual general meeting later this year.

Known as the Fiji Melanesia Development Community Association, it has the membership of descendants of mostly people from the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu who were brought to Fiji during the blackbirding era.

The first group of blackbirders arrived in Fiji from the Solomon Islands and New Hebrides (now Vanuatu) in 1865, with others following until the end of the labour trade in the early 1900s.

Association president Rupeni Oli said some of the executives met at the weekend and decided that their AGM be held for two days in Caubati, Nasinu from November 29.

“We will start off with a refresher program where women, youths and all settlement heads will be briefed on the processes as some of us tend to deliberately ignore projects,” Mr Oli said.

“Our association comprises the descendants of people from the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and PNG.

“The projects in our settlements are funded by the government.”

Mr Oli said since he became the association’s president in 2006, he had moved the focus from small projects to economic activities.

He also said education, especially getting scholarships, was a problem for children living in settlements of the descendants of fellow Melanesians.

“We believe that the only way we can walk away from the vicious cycle of poverty and life in the settlements is through education.

“On the other hand, we got our own role to play too to encourage our people.

“We appreciate being called Fijians but we have to maintain our ethnic identity also.”FijiTimes

2) Activists Declare West Papua ‘Freedom Flotilla’ A Success
Organizer reports ‘secret mission’ held with West Papuan leaders

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Sept. 17, 2013) – Activists from a fleet of boats which travelled from Australia to Indonesia’s disputed Papua province have returned to Australia, describing their mission as a success.

The so-called West Papua Freedom Flotilla made the trip with the intension of raising awareness of what it claims are injustices in the Indonesian province and to highlight the need for peace and stability in the region.

The group, led by a group of senior Indigenous Australians, made symbolic presentations to West Papuan leaders aiming to connect the two Indigenous peoples.

The fleet has returned home to Gove in the Northern Territory, after the trip which went from central Australia’s Lake Eyre to Cairns, before heading to West Papua by boat.

Trip organizer, Izzy Brown, told Radio Australia’s Pacific Beat once the group had crossed into Indonesian waters it made several attempts via radio to contact Indonesian military representatives in Jakarta and the city of Merauke, without success.

“Once we were across the border we launched a small dinghy with a sail and a tracker and messages for the Indonesian government as well as messages for people in Merauke,” she said.

Some members of the flotilla were able to meet with representatives from West Papua.

“A few of us went on a secret mission to another area near the PNG and West Papuan border and met with leaders from the West Papua movement,” Ms. Brown said.

“[We] exchanged the ashes from the Aboriginal tent Embassies here in Australia and the sacred water that we carried all the way from Lake Eyre.”

The Australian government had told the group they would not receive any consular assistance if they were arrested.

According to the flotilla website, the exchange was intended to reunite the cultures of the two Indigenous peoples, whose lands where once joined before being separated at the end of the last ice age, and as a symbol of support for the West Papuans’ 50-year-long fight for independence.

The cultural exchange between Indigenous elders was held in secret, due to statements from the Indonesian military saying they would “take measures” against the flotilla.

“We’re really happy that we did receive global media attention,” Ms. Brown said.

“We really feel this campaign has helped put West Papua on the map and in people’s consciousness.”

Ms. Brown says their future plans include continuing to provide support for political prisoners in West Papua.

“We’ll be running a campaign to support those that were arrested at the prayer and welcoming ceremony in Sarong and we’re going to do more fundraising and campaigning to get the word out about the situation there,” she said.

“There’s a lot happening in West Papua in terms of people rising up and fighting for independence and we’re going to keep a close eye on that.”

Radio Australia: www.abc.net.au/ra

3) Ghost workers cause of latest PNG budget blow out

Posted at 05:19 on 17 September, 2013 UTC

Papua New Guinea’s Treasury Minister Don Polye has revealed a further 60 million US dollar budget blow-out caused by salary payments to apparently non-existent workers on the government payroll.

Mr Polye says the 2013 Budget had projected a fiscal deficit of 7 point 2 percent but this is now out to 7 point 7 percent.

But he says it remains within 32 percent of the overall gross domestic product debt ratio, which is manageable.

He has called on provincial governors and administrators to check that those being paid are legitimately on the payroll.

The latest blowout comes amid a fall in commodity prices with a drop in returns on oil, copper, cocoa and other key commodities.

Radio New Zealand International

4) PNG Govt must secure future
By Online Editor
3:59 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill paid his respects to the founding fathers of the country as the country celebrated its 38th Independence Day Monday.

“Far sighted leaders such as Sir John Guise, Sir Albert Maori Kiki, Sir Thomas Kavali, Sir Iambakey Okuk, Sir Michael Somare and Sir Julius Chan are among many who came together to form a stable administration for our first national government in 1975,” O’Neill said.

He said the present government was determined to provide strong, honest and committed national leadership.

“This means delivering the basic life-supporting services to every Papua New Guinean – a right promised to them at Independence, a right that should have been upheld ever since,” O’Neill said.

“We have just begun. There is much more to be done, but it will be done if all levels of government work together,” O’Neill said.

“The challenge we face today is to secure the future, economically and socially and do so in a way that every Papua New Guinean is included and not excluded, and benefits to the greatest possible extent.”

He said firm, but strong and stable leadership, was needed from national level down to village level to ensure the country’s growth.

Members of Parliament and foreign diplomats mingled with the public on Independence Hill from as early as 5am as they gathered to witness the traditional  flag-raising ceremony yesterday.

Members of the combined disciplined forces provided a guard of honour and band before the national flag was hoisted up the 30-metre flag pole next to Parliament.

Meanwhile, the 38th anniversary of Independence was celebrated, as always, in a burst of brilliant colours throughout Papua New Guinea.

Everywhere there was a sea of red, black, white and yellow in dress and in flags and banners.

Flag raising ceremonies, song and dance, military precision marching and merriment were the order of the day.

Messages of congratulations poured in upon citizens between and among each other, as well as from abroad.  And there were sobering messages.

Governor General Sir Michael Ogio, in his address to the nation, said he stood firm on this year’s theme for the independence: “Where there is integrity, there is hope”.

“Our real hope lies in us having integrity.

“Nothing will go wrong if we have integrity.”

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said: “I believe it means building strong urban communities, but it   also means building better villages and rural communities as well.

“It means stopping the appalling waste and misuse of government resources that are ultimately the people’s resources.

“It means delivering the basic quality of life supporting services to every Papua New Guinean, a right promised to them at Independence, a right we should have been upholding ever since.

“I believe today we are truly well on the way to doing so – rebuilding and delivering basic and quality education and health care.

“And, perhaps most importantly of all, we are now decentralising, funding, decision-making and service delivery to provinces, districts and local level governments.”

Finance and Education Minister James Marape told his Hela brethren in Tari: “Securing Tari is strategic for both Hela and PNG because it is the business, social and administrative hub of the multibillion kina PNG LNG project.

“We have to address law and order. You give us an environment of law and order and I promise you the national and provincial government will bring development to Hela and Tari Pori.”

NCD Governor Powes Parkop told his constituents at the Jack Pidik Park: “The future of the nation depends on the generation of today.

“People must realise that we should be promoting good values that are important for prosperous development to take place such as taking care of ourselves, respecting other people, respecting yourself, respecting your community and by doing this we can be able to reduce violence and other unnecessary behaviour.

“It has to start with yourself and then it will transcend to other people around us from the community, to the people and eventually the nation.”.

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

5) Solomons Parliament Rejects Deferral Of Constituency Bill
Majority of MPs did not stand in support, debate to continue

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Sept. 16, 2013) – The Solomon Islands parliament has rejected a petition by three anti-corruption groups to have it defer the Constituency Development Fund 2013 Bill.

The rejection of the document, which was signed by over 600 people, has paved the way for parliament to continue with the debate on the bill.

The MP for Aoke-Langalanga, Mathew Wale, presented the petition from Transparency Solomon Islands, Forum Solomon Islands International and the Anti-Corruption Network.

When the speaker Sir Allan Kemakeza asked those who supported it to stand, a majority of MPs remained in their seats but accepted copies of it and noted its content.

The opposition supported the petition.

Radio New Zealand International: www.rnzi.com

6a) New post on Vanuatu Daily Digest

Vanuatu daily news digest | 16 September 2013

by bobmakin

Not a lot of weighty reporting today …

Minister of Lands Ralph Regenvanu has told VBTC News he has received a positive response to the ideas solicited on the subject of land ownership and leasing in every meeting he’s held in the provinces so far. These are in connection with the proposed changes to the land laws as demanded by the 2006 Lands Summit. As well as the Efate consultation with his legal and Malvatumauri team members, he has now heard from the people of Luganville and Malo. The ministerial grouping has now begun meetings on Malekula. They are distributing the Bislama information booklet “Plan blong ol jenis blong ol loa blong graon” wherever they hold their meetings which continue until all provinces have been reached.

Daily Post carries a story concerning scholarships which alleges “the scholarship office has violated its commitment to honour scholarship contracts” with students at USP Laucala campus for the “around twenty” scholarships which have been terminated. The terminations are based on non-performance of first year students who failed in whole or in part their first semester. The news item claims the scholarships office will be liable to legal restitution, but it does not say of what.

The tours as well as bungalows available in Vanuatu are being evaluated by the Department of Tourism to ensure they reach certain minimum standards. Jerry Spooner, the principal accreditation officer, told VBTC News the main idea is to lift standards of service to the traveling public. This is being carried out under the Tourism Council Act.

The Fest’Tamiriki music event of the primary schools will take place during Fest’Napuan (16-20 October, with Fes’Tamiriki on 18 October). 18 primary schools, together with Teachers’ College musicians, will participate. JICA volunteers are assisting with the organisation.

The new deputy chief of mission from the US Embassy in Port Moresby, Melanie Higgins, is visiting Vanuatu this week. She will meet government and business leaders. Senior US Army personnel are traveling with her and will be here for a regional meeting.

Tomorrow is a Clean-Up Port Vila day and Wan Smol Bag is taking the lead in the matter. It focuses mainly on the CBD.

bobmakin | September 16, 2013 at 9:59 am | Categories: The News, Digested |

6b) New post on Vanuatu Daily Digest

Vanuatu daily news digest | 17 September 2013

by bobmakin

Again not a lot of hard news being reported …

Vanuatu is hosting the Fourth Pacific Media Partnership Summit starting today and being held over the next few days. It involves the Asian-Pacific Broadcasting Union and Kuala Lumpur based Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development. It is being held in Vanuatu to save travel costs for the island countries’ members, but will be particularly concerned with the problems faced by the small island states.

Prime Minister Carcasses has confirmed to VBTC News that bi-lateral relations with China continue good. He met leaders of government in China and emphasized that priorities included the airport project and infrastructure.

For this morning there are no other airport, drugs haul or interesting court cases and, owing to the meeting in para 1, the blog will only cover Daily Post news later.

bobmakin | September 17, 2013 at 6:49 am | Categories: The News, Digested | URL:

7) Fiji PM: New Zealand’s Lifted Sanctions Come Too Late
Bainimarama: reforms, elections could have come sooner

By Reginald Chandar

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, Sept. 16, 2013) – Fiji’s Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama says thesoftening of sanctions by New Zealand is insincere, unneeded and too late.

His comments come after New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully announced a programme of electoral assistance and the easing of some sanctions last Thursday.

McCully described the move as recognition that progress has been made in Fiji and that the Pacific nation needs support for free and fair elections.

“If these countries now come on board that’s OK, that’s good, but I want to ask the question: where were they when we really needed them?” he told Auckland’s Radio Tarana.

“If they had supported us all these reforms would have come a lot sooner, the election would have come a lot sooner.”

Bainimarama said New Zealand is not really being genuine.

“McCully’s statement that only partial travel bans will be lifted, demonstrates that they are really not genuine nor do they really understand what is happening in Fiji,” he said.

“They are not starting on a clean slate which we have always been prepared to do, as equals.”

He said Australia’s new government should also move further to ease sanctions against Fiji.

“It’s great that Tony Abbott has won the Australian election because his foreign minister, Julie Bishop, has been understanding towards us in a way but other Aussie and Kiwi politicians have not,” he said.

“If the travel bans and other sanctions don’t go there will be no kiss and make up with Australia.”

Fiji had its fourth Constitution assented by the President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau and the document now is the supreme law of the country.

Fijians will go to the poll in September, 2014 to elect their new Parliament.

Four political parties have so far registered for the elections while more than 540,000 voters have registered to cast their vote in the 2014 elections.

[PIR editor’s note: Meanwhile, Bainimarama also says Fiji has no desire to return to the Pacific Islands Forum unless PIF ends its domination at the hands of New Zealand and Australia. “When it becomes a genuine expression of the will of the Pacific Islanders themselves, then we will go back, then we will think about re-joining the Forum,” he said.]

Fijilive: http://www.fijilive.com

8) Mixed reaction in Fiji over the advertisement of Supervisor of Election
By Online Editor
1:38 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Fiji

Political parties in Fiji have sent off mixed reactions over the advertisement by the government of the key position of supervisor of elections.

The Attorney-General and Minister Responsible for Elections, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, said the government was particularly encouraging applications from elections experts overseas.

“It is very important that this position be filled by an individual with the necessary skills and expertise, who can build capacity in the Elections Office and who can ensure that Fiji’s national elections are conducted in a fair, transparent and credible manner,” Sayed-Khaiyum said.

Labour leader Mahendra Chaudhry said while the supervisor of elections was needed, it was more important to get the electoral act and regulation in place.

“The Electoral Act 1998 and regulations issued under that was revoked by the government has not been replaced so there is no legislation governing the conduct of elections,” Chaudhry said.

“As far as the supervisor of elections position is concerned, it was advertised some time back but never filled after the advertisement appeared so advertising is one thing and filling the position with the right person is another and it must be completely independent of the government.”

Chaudhry said the supervisor of elections must be a person whom the people of Fiji had confidence in, was independent of the government and had the right qualifications for the position.

“It must be an independent office not under the control of any minister.”

Chaudhry said the more important thing was to get the legislation in place which would set the framework for elections.

SODELPA member Dr Tupeni Baba said the position being under the Attorney General was not independent.

“The whole thing is flawed; it’s working under the government to control the elections.”

NFP president Raman Pratap Singh said they were concerned about the person appointing which does not render the office holder to be independent.

“According to the Constitution transitional provision 167 (3), all the functions of the Constitutional Officers Commission shall be performed by the Prime Minister.”

Singh said his party was requesting for the appointment of a caretaker government at least six months before elections as they would be independent and would not interfere with the elections process.

Th Peoples Democratic Party spokesman Nirmal Singh said they have been observing the process and witnessed credible progress made towards holding credible 2014 elections.

“We have met and consulted with several foreign monitors such as those from the New Zealand Government, EU who have come into the country and met with us. They have advised that they are very comfortable that the elections will take place and has seen some credible developments leading towards elections.”

Singh said the appointment of the supervisor of elections puts another indicator that elections would be held.

“We would comment more when the supervisor of elections is appointed.”.

SOURCE: FIJI TIMES/PACNEWS

POLYNESIA:

9) Tonga Contracts Chinese Company For Ministries Building
Construction of new structure at Pangai Si’i to begin in July 2014

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Sept. 16, 2013) – The Tongan Government has signed a contract with a Chinese company to build a government building to house several ministries.

Work on the design of the building began last year, after the Chinese Government made funding available for the project.

Last week, a team from the China Northeast Architectural Design and Research Institute visited Tonga to consult on the conceptual designs with the relevant ministries, and to formally sign the contract.

The new building will be at Pangai Si’i in Nuku’alofa, and construction is scheduled to begin in July 2014.

Last week Tonga also announced it had signed a multi million dollar aid agreement with China and that decisions on how the money was to be spent still to be made.

Radio New Zealand International: www.rnzi.com

10) Exporter Claims Samoa, China In ‘Secret’ Fishing Talks
Apia-based businessman says negotiations threaten local industry

By Jason Brown

APIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer, Sept. 16, 2013) – A leading fish exporting company has claimed that Samoa is in “secret talks” with China that may threaten the future of the country’s fishery industry.

“I was rather astonished to learn of the existence of negotiations between local Samoa officials and Chinese fishing interests,” says John Luff, Managing Director of Apia Export Fish Packers Ltd., in a letter to the editor.

“Although there are scant details available to us at this time it was confirmed in phone conversations that there was indeed some initial progress toward allowing foreign licence vessels, in this case Chinese, to operate within Samoa’s territorial waters.”

China already operates 1,300 fishing vessels in the South Pacific, all of them belonging to one company – the state owned Chinese National Fisheries Corporation.

China plans to add another 300 vessels by 2015, according to news reports.

Mr. Luff has posed five questions to authorities about the alleged talks.

These include a challenge to allowing China to use heavily subsidised long line vessels within the country’s EEZ, the Exclusive Economic Zone.

China “heavily” supports its foreign fishing fleet, with the Pew Environment Group identifying $4.1 billion in subsidies.

Only Japan spends more, at $4.6 billion.

Those figures are the latest available but stem from 2003, and could be higher now.

In his letter to the Samoa Observer, Mr. Luff said that local companies cannot compete against that kind of subsidy.

“Why Samoa, with the smallest economic zone (E.E.Z.) in the Pacific would wish to embrace the country or countries with the largest distant water fishing fleets in the world, with obvious expansion objectives, is very difficult to understand.

“The only logical conclusion that could be derived is that there is perhaps a trade off proposed in some alternative area that has little to do with the long-term viability of Samoa’s extremely valuable fish stocks.

“If this is the case, then I believe any such trade off, regardless of perceived short-term gains to Samoa, would be very ill conceived.”

Samoa does not allow foreign fishing vessels in its EEZ apart from American purse seiners, according to sources.

Changing that status would mean Samoa contributing to the destruction of regional fisheries, said Mr. Luff.

“The South West Pacific Tuna stocks are considered to be one of the last remaining healthy fisheries on the planet yet we are witnessing a rape that the region has never before encountered.”

Mr. Luff said it would be a shame if Samoa abandons its previously strong stance on preserving the country’s fish stocks. “It is internationally recognised that Samoa has a well-managed fishery with good long term sustainable fisheries policies in place. I believe it would be a great pity to see this well deserved reputation diminished,” said Mr. Luff.

It was not possible to get a comment from the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries yesterday.

Samoa Observer: www.samoaobserver.ws/

MICRONESIA:

11) Kiribati MPs Urge President To Sack 2 Ministers
Tourism minister reportedly received too high an allowance

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Sept. 16, 2013) – Kiribati’s president says he has received a petition from nine government MPs calling on him to sack two ministers for misconduct.

Anote Tong has told the Kiribati Independent he has met with the MPs to sort out their grievances regarding the conduct of the communications, transport and tourism minister, Taberannang Timeon, and public works and energy minister, Kirabuke Teiaua.

The MPs’ action comes after an incident unfolded in parliament last month when it was revealed that Mr. Timeon got a sitting allowance of US$924, many times the normal allowance.

Mr. Teiaua defended the size of the allowance, saying it was no problem.

Mr. Tong says he is still to decide what action he will take.

Radio New Zealand International: www.rnzi.com

AUSTRALIA:

12) Greg Combet and Penny Wong back Anthony Albanese as he launches Labor leadership campaign

Posted 17 September 2013, 20:22 AEST

Senior Labor figures Greg Combet and Penny Wong back Anthony Albanese for the party’s leadership.

Senior Labor figures Greg Combet and Penny Wong are in the corner of Anthony Albanese as he vies for the party’s leadership.

Mr Albanese and Bill Shorten are in the running for the top job and will spend the next month campaigning to win over caucus and party members.

Tonight in Sydney Mr Albanese launched his campaign and was introduced by Mr Combet, who retired at the election.

“When you have just lost an election, you need to look for someone who is very strong, someone steeped in Labor tradition… someone who will fight, and especially when you’re up against someone like Tony Abbott,” Mr Combet said.

“What does Labor need? A strong person, absolute clarity of view about their values, demonstration of their values through their working life and commitment to the Labor movement.”

Mr Albanese says he believes he is the person best placed to lead Labor back to government within one term.

“In terms of my capacity to work with people in an open way, in a transparent way, what I will be saying to you and to rank-and-file members around the country is what you see is what you get.

“That is what I believe we need in terms of the leadership of the Labor Party.”

Earlier, Mr Combet said he and Mr Albanese had been friends since studying economics together at Sydney University in the 1980s.

“So [I have] some personal loyalty to him, although I’ve also known Bill Shorten a long time too,” he said.

“Both of them would make great Labor leaders I think, but I’m supporting Anthony tonight … because he’s got the capacity for the job, there’s no doubt about that.”

The party’s national president, Jenny McAllister, also threw her support behind the former deputy PM at the launch, describing him as a much-loved leader.

“We are all here to support a man whose commitment to a democratic, energetic, progressive Labor Party is unquestioned,” she said.

“He’s a man who’s never been afraid to point out an abuse of power and he’s fought alongside many of the people here in this room for meaningful party reform.”

Former health minister Tanya Plibersek, who is Mr Shorten’s preferred deputy, was also seen at the Albanese launch.

‘Passionate supporter of equality’

Senator Wong says both candidates would make outstanding Labor leaders and even prime ministers, but she says Mr Albanese has the most experience.

“One of the primary reasons I’m also supporting Anthony is there’s been no stronger, more passionate supporter of equality, particularly for women,” she said.

Albanese v Shorten

The leadership contest between Anthony Albanese and Bill Shorten essentially pits union power against rank-and-file party members.

Take a look back at the political careers of both men, and read about how the voting process works.

“He’s an incredibly strong supporter of women getting into Parliament and supporting their careers, so he really lives his Labor values.”

The results of the ballot between Mr Albanese and Mr Shorten will be announced on October 13.

Former prime minister Kevin Rudd changed the party’s rules for electing a new leader when he regained the Labor leadership.

Mr Rudd gave party members a 50 per cent say in the choice of leader and also introduced a rule that meant a 75 per cent majority of caucus would be required to change the Labor leader in government.

Mr Combet has criticised the rule which governs the percentage of caucus needed to dump a leader.

“I understand why that position was brought forward but I think that’s inherently undemocratic and it needs to change,” he said.

“If you don’t have the support of the simple majority of the Labor Party caucus then you’re not in a good position as leader.”radio australia

13) Tony Abbott appoints Angus Campbell to lead Operation Sovereign Borders policy

Updated 17 September 2013, 19:06 AEST
By national security correspondent Michael Brissenden

Deputy Chief of Army Angus Campbell will be put in charge of combating people smugglers and securing Australia’s borders under the incoming Coalition Government.

Deputy Chief of Army Angus Campbell will be put in charge of combating people smugglers under the incoming Coalition Government. The ABC understands the appointment will be confirmed by Prime Minister-elect Tony Abbott later this week. He will be promoted to a three-star general and coordinate the 16 departments and agencies that will come under Operation Sovereign Borders. Major General Campbell will have the powers to bypass normal Defence Force command structures and will report directly to the immigration minister. The Coalition’s policy includes turning boats back, buying old boats from Indonesian fishermen and paying Indonesians to spy on people smuggling operations.radio australia


14) Australian PM-elect Tony Abbott reveals new cabinet line-up

By Online Editor
1:43 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, AustraliaAustralian Prime Minister-elect Tony Abbott has revealed his new cabinet line-up at a press conference in Parliament House of Canberra on Monday, nine days after the coalition’s election win over Labor.

Abbott said the new government’s task was to “calmly” implement the commitments it made to the Australian people during the election campaign.

“You’ll see there is enormous stability in this team but there has been as well some significant promotions,” he added.

This 19-member cabinet of the Abbott government will be sworn in on Wednesday at the House of Governor-General.

According to Abbott, Nationals leader Warren Truss will be Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development. And Deputy Nationals Leader Barnaby Joyce will be Agriculture Minister.

Abbott confirmed he supported Bronwyn Bishop to become Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Deputy Liberal Leader Julie Bishop, as foreign affairs minister, is the only woman in a frontbench position in this cabinet.

Other Ministers includes Defence Minister David Johnston, Attorney-General George Brandis, Minister for Indigenous Affairs Nigel Scullion, Minister for Finance Mathias Cormann, Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane, Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb, Treasurer Joe Hockey, Communication Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Health Minister Peter Dutto, Education Minister Christopher Pyner, Minister for Immigration and border protection Scott Morrison, Environment Minister Greg Hunt, Employment Minister Eric Abetz, Small Business Minister Bruce Billson and Minister for Social Services Kevin Andrews.

Compare with the Labor government, Abbott emphasized that his ministers would have short titles, and his colleagues in the outer ministry would be simply described as “Assistant Minister”.

SOURCE: XINHUA/PACNEWS

TOK PISIN:

15) PNG imakim 38 yiar indipendans tasol emi lus tingting long ol yut

Updated 17 September 2013, 11:41 AEST
Kene Kala

Ol yut blong Papua New Guinea i tok taim kantri i makim 38 yar indipendens blongen, Gavman ino luksave long ol.

Ol png pipal i makim indipendans day 2013 (Credit: Audience submitted)
Odio: James Lunge, wanpla Year 11 sumatin long Jubilee Catholic Secondary School long Port Moresby na em ibin toktok wantaim KK.

James Lunge, em i wanpla Year 11 sumatin long Jubilee Catholic Secondary School long Port Moresby.

Em ibin mekim displa toktok insait long wanpla foram bung, em Sharp Talk ibin hostim wantaim het toktok SHAPING OUR FUTURE long wik igo pinis.

James Lunge i tok bikpla wari ol i lukim em long planti grup blong ol yut i stap, tasol ol ino lukautim planti ol yut blong tude.

Emi tok tu olsem maski igat ol evis blong ol yut olsem national yut komisin, ol yangpla pipal ino gat wanpla gutpla samting emi ken helpim ol long bihaenim gutpla lif na sidaon long kantri.

Oli sutim tok long gavman long lus ting ting long ol.radio australia

16) Kitano Construction kampani long Solomon Islands i bungim heve

Updated 17 September 2013, 16:50 AEST
Paulus Kombo

Polis bilong Guadalcanal Provins i pulim kalabusim wanpela man bihain long emi bin hatim bel blong  ol vilis pipal na ol igo bagarapim ol masin bilong Kitano Construction em kos moa long  3-million Solomon dollar.

Odio: David Diosi, Guadalcanal Provinsiol Polis Commander i toktok

Despela man em polis i pulim kalabusim em ibin stap namel long 90 ol wokman em  Kitano Construction kampani ibin mekim ol redundant oa rausim ol wantem sampla pei blong ol long last wik.

Ol despela wok wokman ino hamamas long mak bilong moni kampani i peim ol olsem redundancy pakage na wanpela bilong ol ibin bel hat na igo stilim wanpela track bilong kampani na draive igo insait long wanpela villis na mekim sampla pasin em ol pipal i wari tru long en.

Ol pipol bilong despela villis i kros long despela na ol igo long compound bilong despela kampani na bagrapim ol masin samting emi kos planti million dollar.

David Diosi, Guadalcanal Provinsiol Polis Commander itok despla wokman ibin spak tumas na klostu emi bin bamim ol pipal long despla vilis na mekim ol pipal ibin kros tru na oli bin bagarapim planti samting blong despla kampani.radio australia

FRENCH:

17) 38 années d’indépendance pour la Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée

Posté à 17 September 2013, 8:18 AEST
Pierre Riant

C’est un 16 septembre 1975 que le pays a obtenu son indépendance de l’Australie. Pour le Premier ministre Peter O’Neill, l’heure est à l’optimisme.

Dans un discours publié dans la presse locale vendredi mais prononcé hier, Peter O’Neill déclare ceci : «  Bien que nous ayons voyagé loin en tant que pays au cours de ces 38 dernières années, nous n’avons pas été assez loin.

D’énormes défis nous attendent ; une population qui grandit rapidement et nous avons des routes, des lignes aériennes, des ports, des hôpitaux, des garnisons que nous devons construire ou élargir.

Mais nous avons posé les fondations des politiques que nous allons mettre en place. »

C’est l’Australie qui en 1906 a pris le contrôle de la colonie britannique de Papouasie dans la partie sud de l’île. La partie nord était aux mains des Allemands et les forces australiennes s’en sont emparées  pendant la première guerre mondiale. Les deux territoires ont fusionné après la seconde guerre mondiale  qui a vu également la mise en place d’un gouvernement et d’un système judiciaire.

Le pays, conduit par Sir Michael Somare, est devenu autonome un 1er décembre 1973 puis indépendant le 16 septembre 1975 avec Sir Michael au poste de Premier ministre.

Certains se demandent si la Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée était prête pour l’indépendance, ce débat refait toujours surface pendant les fêtes de l’indépendance. Mais Alex Rheeney, le rédacteur en chef du Post Courier,  semble sur la même longueur d’onde que le Premier ministre : « Peut-être qu’à l’époque c’était l’occasion de franchir le pas et maintenant 38 ans plus tard, nous avons encore des défis à relever.

Les Papous font la fête aujourd’hui et les critiques disent que la joie sera brève et que nous allons retrouver la réalité le 17 septembre et c’est ce que nous faisons depuis 38 ans.

Mais le défi aujourd’hui est que chaque individu de Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée se demande ce qu’il peut faire pour vraiment contribuer au bien-être de la nation. Qu’il se dise peut-être que je peux faire quelque chose pour la vie des autres au lieu de laisser ce rôle au gouvernement et aux partenaires du développement. »radio australia.

18) PNG : saison noire pour les tortues de Milne Bay

Posté à 17 September 2013, 8:23 AEST
Pierre Riant

Conformément à la loi, la saison de la chasse est terminée mais des pêcheurs continuent de se rabattre sur les tortues au rythme de parfois 5 par jour.

Cette chasse inquiète les habitants de cette province de Milne Bay qui regroupe 600 îles. Douglas Tomuriesa, le député de Kiriwina-Goodenough, nous explique les raisons derrière ce que certains appellent le massacre des tortues.

TOMURIESA : « À une certaine époque de l’année, notamment cette année, les gens chassent les tortues pour leur consommation mais aussi pour alimenter les marchés locaux. Et c’est maintenant une grande inquiétude pour les dirigeants locaux mais aussi pour la communauté internationale, que cette prise excessive de tortues pour la consommation. »

Combien de tortues ont été tuées cette année ?

TOMURIESA : « Je n’ai pas le chiffre exact mais j’ai été sur le terrain et un expatrié en visite aux îles Trobriand a vu la même situation, c’est de 3 à 5 tortues qui sont prises chaque jour, ce qui fait  environ 30 tortues par semaine. Et ça nous inquiète beaucoup. Nous avons donc prévenu les autorités et nous avons tout fait pour mettre un terme à cette chasse. Et je dois dire que le nombre de prises a baissé depuis 2 semaines, c’est une ou deux tortues maintenant. Mais nous aimerions arrêter tout cela. »

La loi interdit maintenant la chasse aux tortues et aux dugongs mais selon Douglas Tomuriesa, personne  n’est là pour veiller à la mise en application de la loi.

Qu’en est-il des lois coutumières ? Est-ce que les tortues et les dugongs sont pris en considération par les lois coutumières ?

TOMURIESA : « Il y a une loi coutumière, j’ai eu l’honneur de parler au grand chef des îles Trobriand et après lui avoir parlé, ainsi qu’à d’autres chefs coutumiers, je peu dire que la loi coutumière interdit de tuer des tortues et des dugongs quotidiennement ou à des fins commerciales. C’est seulement quand il y a une grande fête ou un évènement spécial que les gens sont autorisés à prendre des tortues. Alors ils en prennent 2 ou 3 mais seulement pour ce type d’occasion et pas tous les jours, ni en manger tous les jours, ni pour des besoins commerciaux. »

Alors pourquoi 5 tortues sont tuées chaque jour dans la province ?

TOMURIESA : « Les pêcheurs des îles Trobriand font maintenant de la pêche commerciale pour alimenter les marchés locaux parce que beaucoup de personnes mangent du poisson pour leurs protéines. Mais les conditions météo sont difficiles dans nos îles depuis au moins 5 ou 6 mois. Et le mauvais temps empêche les pêcheurs d’aller en haute mer. Alors ils vont dans des endroits où les tortues viennent s’abriter et c’est là qu’ils les prennent. Tous les jours, ils vont chasser la tortue et prennent le même poids que s’ils prenaient du poisson et ils vont aux marchés locaux pour les vendre. »

Le nombre de prises a maintenant un peu baissé et ce n’est pas grâce aux pêcheurs mais aux habitants, aux villageois qui ont pris l’affaire en mains et qui empêchent des pêcheurs de chasser les tortues.radio australia

PASIFIK:

19) Central Pacific shipping regulator should be endorsed this week

Posted at 09:41 on 17 September, 2013 UTC

A body that aims to bring more certain shipping services to small island countries of the central Pacific is expected to get a full endorsement this week in meetings in Suva.

The Central Pacific Shipping Commission was created three years ago, with the help of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community, to improve the regularity of shipping to the Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and Tuvalu.

The SPC’s Captain John Round says the member countries are ready to endorse the Commission as a regulatory body, presenting them as a single market that is a more valuable route for the shipping companies.

And Captain Round says the companies back the concept.

“We were expecting that because the Commission actually basically ensures that the market supply and the demands are met and once the approved shipping companies have been identified there will not be any cherry pickers, so to speak.”

Radio New Zealand International

HEALTH:

20) Solomons hospital monitoring for illness outbreaks after floods

Posted at 09:41 on 17 September, 2013 UTC

A Solomon Islands hospital in eastern Guadalcanal says patient intake seems to be back to normal after the region was hit by destructive flooding last week.

Heavy rain in the mountains left 12,000 people affected by food and water shortages.

The nurse manager at the Good Samaritan hospital at Tetere, Adrian Manikera, says

he is now seeing only a few potentially flood-related illnesses each day but is monitoring the situation closely.

“I have a surveillance form supplied by the Ministry of Health to monitor diarrhoea cases and fever cases and chronic fever cases to keep track of the possibility of outbreak but currently have a normal number of patients coming daily. But in the days to come, the story might turn out different.”

Mr Manikera appealed to the Ministry of Health’s health promotion team last week to come to the area educate locals, but they have not yet come.

He says he has been going out into the community himself, encouraging people to boil water before they drink it.

Radio New Zealand International

21) Solomons Group Lauds Uncovering Of Health Ministry Fraud
Joint civil society group also hits out against PM Lilo

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, Sept. 16, 2013) – The Joint Civil Society Group (JCSG) commends the Solomon Islands Ministry of Finance and Treasury for uncovering the SBD$10 million [US$1.4 million] fraud in the Ministry of Health.

Interim chairman of JCSG Barnabas Henson says this is welcome news.

“This is the kind of corruption that has been one of the major hindrances to national growth and development,” he said.

“The Ministry of Finance staff deserves official recognition for their diligence in discovering this grand-scale fraud.

“Those who have uncovered the recent CDOs fraud should be commended as well. This is the stuff we’re talking about.”

On the other hand, Henson said the prime minister’s swift action in seeking credit for this find and attesting it to his ‘zero tolerance policy’ is grossly hypocritical.

“He first needs to show cause for his statement by subjecting the PMO and Cabinet to similar financial scrutiny if he is as genuine as he claims to be,” Henson said.

“This is pure hypocrisy because the PM’s political behaviour is ascetically inconsistent with his purported anti-corruption beliefs.

“It is hypocrisy because apparently there is an absence of self-awareness here which in turn is highly deceptive – pretending to believe in something he has no faith in.

“It is hypocrisy because the PM is only lip servicing the cause, pretending to be doing something about it, when really he knows he’s not – being weak-willed.

“We are sorry but PM Lilo has again failed to convince by his illusive temperament because it has become very difficult to see any light of truthfulness in him.

“Nonetheless he deserves to be accorded credit for being the ‘finest political actor this nation has ever seen,’” Henson said.

He added Lilo’s leadership has gone ‘toxic’ hence only his removal from office would avert disaster.

“Nothing he says will ever be taken as truth given that he himself has demonstrated intense failure to ‘live his talk.’

“Play acting in political leadership is no joke – a leader who plays parts is potentially unreliable simply because he has more than one face to display.

“Can this type of leader be trusted?

“Is it worth sacrificing the lives of our students, teachers, parents/guardians, the sick, the marginalised, or the silent majority?

“PM Lilo must not be allowed to continue on with his despicable political play-acting. Enough of this madness.”

Solomon Star

EDUCATION:

22) New USP Solomons Campus Construction To Begin In 2014
Building could start in July, ADB has provided initial loan

By Moffat Mamu

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, Sept. 17, 2013) – Work on the new Solomon Islands University of the South Pacific (USP) campus in Ndoma, West Guadalcanal is expected to start mid next year.

And this new campus will be a model green campus and self-sufficient.

This was revealed by the USP’s acting Vice Chancellor (VC) Dr. Esther Williams last Friday in Honiara at the annual USP graduation ceremony held at the Maranatha conference centre, east Honiara.

The ceremony saw 146 local students being conferred with certificates, diplomas, undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications.

The ceremony was graced with the presence of His Majesty King Tupou the Sixth of Tong who is now the Chancellor of the University of the South Pacific.

He was accompanied by Her Majesty Queen Nanasipau’u.

Solomon Islands Government was represented by the deputy Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga.

Speaking at the occasion while outlining the university’s plan for the Solomon Islands campus, Dr. Esther said Solomon Islands is one of USP’s largest members in terms of students and also played an important role in the operation of the university.

“Solomon Islands is our second largest member in terms of student numbers and is an important member of USP.”

Speaking in the absence of the Vice Chancellor Professor Rajesh Chandra, Dr. Esther said the university is indeed very grateful to the Solomon Islands Government and the provincial government of Guadalcanal for the 100.4 hectares of land gifted to USP to build the new campus at Ndoma.

“It was only in September 2012 at the SI graduation ceremony, our Vice-Chancellor had indicated the urgent need for land to build a new and modern campus in the Solomon Islands to enable the university to provide students in Solomon Islands with the best learning environment with improved space, facilities, support staff and services to ensure student success and improved pass rates.”

She added that now that land had been secured work on the new site will kick off as of next July.

“Today land has been found and the ADB has provided a concessional loan and construction is expected to start in July 2014.

“I believe this is an exciting time for USP and the Solomon Islands with developments moving fast for this assignment.”

She pointed out there is a joint task force comprising representatives of the Government of the Solomon Islands and the USP that is overseeing the plans for this campus.

“I also take this opportunity to thank our hardworking campus advisory committee its chair and members and our High Commissioner of Solomon Islands in Fiji His Excellency Patteson Oti who have worked hard in the acquisition of land and physical ongoing plans for the campus including the development of an academic plan.”

The acting VC highlighted at the ceremony that according to plan this campus will be a model green campus being self-sufficient in water and renewable energy.

“The new campus will have lecture and tutorial rooms, meeting rooms, student study spaces, student accommodation and staff housing and state of the art computer and science labs and recreational facilities.

“There will also be a conference centre, a much needed facility here in Honiara.”

She further highlighted that the design of the new campus will reflect the culture and local traditions of the Solomon Islands and its people.

“The new SI campus would offer improved and state of the art facilities to students, but undoubtedly the benefits that would accrue to the Solomon Islands economy in the injection of funds in the building of a campus, employing local contractors, and the SI Campus providing more employment to local staff than currently the case would be immense.

“This will include the anticipated reduced cost of training Solomon Islanders locally rather than sending them overseas.”

It’s understood a team from the USP is currently working with the local authorities and government ministries in the country to prepare the land to ensure work kicks off come July.

A government officer told the Solomon Star over the weekend that one of the immediate tasks that needs to be done is to scan the land for any old world war explosives and have them removed to allow construction work to start.

Areas along West Guadalcanal near Ndoma was part of a battle field during the Guadalcanal campaign of the second world war.

Solomon Star

MEDIA/FILM+:

23) Fiji Labour Party Campaigns Against Media Restrictions
FLP says it will review laws after success in 2014 polls

By Avinesh Gopal

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, Sept. 16, 2013) – The Fiji Labour Party (FLP) plans to reverse media restrictions if it wins the next elections and comes into power.

However, the party says some form of media accountability and responsibility is necessary, adding it always advocated for a Media Tribunal to ensure this.

In its mini-manifesto in preparation for the 2014 elections, the FLP says licensing restrictions will be removed and local/expatriate ownership laws will be reviewed in the best interests of the country.

The party says it will review the Media Industry Development Decree to remove what it believes are harsh penalties and any restrictions on media freedom.

It says it will “retain the progressive bits such as the benefits of training, monitoring and other things considering the fact that seven years of censorship has had a debilitating impact on standards of reporting and media ethics.”

Also, the mini-manifesto says the FLP will establish a National Youth Volunteer Service Scheme to give unemployed youths jobs as volunteer workers while undergoing training.

The party says such training will enhance unemployed youths’ chances of securing regular paid employment or engaging in self-employed ventures.

On housing, the FLP says it will see that the state subsidises low income houses to bring them within the reach of the low income earner.

The party believes education is the right of every child and needy students should not be denied this basic right as a result of financial constraints.

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

LAW&ORDER:

24) Former Fijian fund manager and NZ resident found guilty of corruption

Posted at 09:41 on 17 September, 2013 UTC

A former deputy general manager of the Fiji National Provident Fund has been found guilty of corruption by the Fiji High Court.

Foana Nemani, who currently lives in New Zealand, was charged with extortion and abuse of authority, for authorising the payment of allowances to herself and a former CEO in 2006 without the proper procedures.

In 2011, the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption said it was working with Interpol for Nemani’s arrest.

She had travelled to New Zealand for medical reasons and did not return.

Our correspondent Ricardo Morris says last year the High Court ruled she could be tried in her absence.

“According to my knowledge that had not been carried out in Fiji before. They managed to use a section that covers the absence of an accused person in court.”

Ricardo Morris says sentencing will follow and the court may attempt to prepare extradition papers.

Radio New Zealand International

25) Vanuatu airport marine bust suspected part of bigger scheme
By Online Editor
3:46 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Vanuatu

Authorities in Vanuatu suspect the seizure of banned marine species at Vanuatu’s Bauerfield Airport indicates there is a large scale smuggling ring operating in the country.

The fisheries department found 30 kilogrammes of beche-de-mer, green-snail, triton and trochus shell concealed in the falsebottom bags and has linked them with Chinese nationals who have left the country.

The principal compliance officer Felix Toa Ngwango says there are other Chinese people still in Vanuatu who are believed to be involved and they are being investigated.

“It’s a big amount, especially to our research officers because they’re making a lot of effort in surveying these areas and also rehabilitating the reefs. But when they found that people are going ahead and harvesting left, right and centre, you know, to them it’s like a slap on the face and I can tell you, it’s really big.”

Toa Ngwango says ni-Vanuatu are also illegally harvesting banned and regulated marine species.

SOURCE: RNZI/PACNEWS

CLIMATE CHANGE,CONSERVATION & ENVIROMENT:

Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme

News Release

Apia, Samoa

Monday, September 16, 2013

26) Choiseul Climate Resilience Project Discussed At Forum

People and local communities are paramount in the ‘Ridge to Community to Reef’ concept used in a project to help the Choiseul Province in the Solomon Islands increase their resilience against climate change and natural disasters.

This was one of the lessons shared at the third Pacific Environment Forum in Apia, Samoa. The one day event brought together Pacific environment stakeholders to discuss natural solutions for building resilience to climate change.

The Choiseul Integrated Climate Change Programme uses natural solutions integrated with other actions in fisheries, agriculture and management planning. The Ecosystem based Adaptation (EbA) component is being implemented by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and funded by USAID in collaboration with other development partners.

This project also aims at enhancing food security and strengthening the resilience of natural ecosystems.

Dr. Melchior Mataki, Permanent Secretary of the Solomon Islands Ministry for Environment,

“Through this extension of the ridge to reef approach we are giving importance to the communities and ensuring that we do not lose sight of the needs of the people as they are at the forefront and are the ones that make decisions or take actions that can negatively or positively impact the natural environment,” said Dr. Melchior Mataki, the Permanent Secretary of the Solomon Islands Ministry for Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management and Meteorology.

His was one of several presentations on lessons learnt in implementing the EbA approaches at the Pacific Environment Forum today.

Natural solutions for building resilience to climate change – an integrated ecosystem approach is the theme of the third Pacific Environment Forum coordinated by SPREP. Ecosystem based Adaptation recognises the importance of intact ecosystems in providing protection and resilience of communities to climate change.

All communities in Choiseul are coastal. The terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystems they depend on are closely linked by the relatively small catchment areas that connect the mountains, coastline and ocean. Ridge to community to reef planning integrates multiple sectors including agriculture, forestry and fisheries in order to protect what communities rely upon for their livelihoods and help keep ecosystems healthy to reduce vulnerability.

According to Dr. Mataki, while this partnership programme has just started with the signing of a partnership in January this year, this is a project that has potential for real success; a vital ingredient being the ownership of the local community.

“We have had to identify EbA within the context of the problems they face, instead of telling them about EbA and that they should be doing this, we have provided them with real examples of where strong habitats have helped strengthen coastlines. We see EbA solutions through their perspective and internalise it within the issues they face so it becomes a way of life for them. This way, once the project is over, the community themselves will help sustain it.”

The Choiseul Integrated Climate Change Programme partners are: Secretariat of the Pacific Community; Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme; Deutsche Gesellschaft Für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ); Pacific-Australia Climate Change Science and Adaptation Planning Program; The Nature Conservancy, and the United Nations Development Program.

27) Pacific state looks to become world’s first floating nation
By Online Editor
1:36 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Kiribati

The islands now called Kiribati have been inhabited since 3000 BC, but if the seas continue to rise they could be gone in as little as a century.

For a decade, Anote Tong the president has been warning the 100,000 inhabitants of the tiny Pacific state that they may not have much longer to cling to their 32 atolls. Now, he can talk about a potential solution.

Improbable though it may sound, with the help of a pioneering Japanese company and a few hundred billion dollars, Tong is considering the creation of the world’s first floating nation.

Shimizu Corp., a Tokyo-based construction company, is devising plans for a city that floats on vast “lily-pads” on the surface of the Pacific, although the designs look like something that might be devised for another planet in the distant future.

Each island will be nearly two miles across, with a central tower rising half a mile to form a “city in the sky.” The tower will have residential units for 30,000 people and space for offices, services and shops.

The central shaft will be used to grow vegetables and fruit, with Shimizu aiming to make the city self-sufficient for food. The flat base of the island, which will be tethered to the ocean floor far below, will have a residential zone for another 10,000 inhabitants, along with forests, beaches and arable land, as well as port facilities.

Single units can be connected to form floating “cities” of up to 100,000 people. “The idea behind the Green Float project was first as a solution to the problem of a rapidly growing human population or as a city that would be immune to earthquakes and tsunami,” said Masayuki Takeuchi, the head of the scheme.

“But we quickly realized that it could save islands from rising sea levels. We are still at the planning stage, of course, but we believe this is a feasible project.”

In April, a team of engineers from Shimizu travelled to Kiribati, granted independence from Britain in 1979, to update its president.

The estimated cost of pounds 317billion – almost 3,000 times the nation’s pounds 111 million GDP last year – is almost as mind-boggling as the designs, but Takeuchi is sure future units would be cheaper. Where the money might come from is not yet clear, but Tong is convinced that his nation, which rises no more than 6ft above the present sea level, requires a radical solution.

Earlier this month he said global commitments to reduce the impact of climate change would not help his country: “The momentum of what’s already in the atmosphere will ensure that sea levels rise above our islands. We will be totally devastated.”.

SOURCE: THE TELEGRAPH/PACNEWS

28) BRICS pledge cooperation on climate change
By Online Editor
3:58 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Brazil

The BRICS bloc of emerging economies, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, said Monday it would strengthen cooperation to fight climate change through a series of joint resolutions.

BRICS representatives issued a joint statement containing the resolutions agreed to by the five countries at the two-day 16th BRICS Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change, which concluded Monday in Foz do Iguacu, southern Brazil.

The BRICS countries said they were fully committed to the successful outcome of the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference, to be held in Warsaw, Poland, in November.

They pledged to back the Polish government’s efforts to ” achieve a comprehensive and balanced outcome in Warsaw, in an open and transparent, inclusive … process.”

The five countries also agreed on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP), a set of commitments on global warming that were established at the 2011 UN Climate Change Conference, in Durban, South Africa.

The BRICS ministers said the ADP’s process and outcome should be guided by and be in full compliance with all the principles and provisions of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change ( UNFCCC).

The BRICS stressed the need for “a balanced approach between all pillars of the Durban Platform — mitigation, adaptation, finance, capacity-building, technology development and transfer, transparency of action and support,” saying that the ADP’s outcome should not rely solely on mitigation, but take all other factors into consideration as well.

The Durban platform is expected to be signed in 2015 and take effect in 2020.

The BRICS said it believes in the principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities,” and called for commitments from all countries.

“Responsibility for climate change … rests on all countries, differentiated according to the extent to which they have contributed historically to the urgent problem which we now face, taking into account national circumstances, capabilities, population, development needs, in the context of equitable access to sustainable development,” said the joint statement.

Argentina, Fiji, Paraguay, Peru and Venezuela also had representatives at the meeting.

The next BRICS Ministerial Meeting will be held in China in the fourth quarter of 2013.

SOURCE: XINHUA/PACNEWS

29) Tuvalu planning to use 100 percent solar power by 2020
By Online Editor
3:54 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Tuvalu

Tuvalu intends being 100 percent powered by renewable energy by 2020 as its commitment under the Majuro Declaration.

The declaration was the key decision to emerge from the Pacific Islands Forum summit in Majuro earlier this month.

In it Pacific countries commit to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and Tuvalu’s prime minister, Enele Sopoaga, says they intend following Tokelau as a country using only solar energy in place of diesel fuel to provide electricity.

He says he wants lighting on each of the nine atolls to be provided by solar by Christmas.

“We really need to be practical and we are going for partners who are working with us – New Zealand in particular, the European Union and Japan. And these things are doable and will save us a lot of money by moving away from petroleum to solar energy.”.

SOURCE: RNZI/PACNEWS

SPORTS:


30a) Start preparing now for 2015 Pacific Games: PNG PM
By Online Editor
1:49 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Papua New GuineaPapua New Guinean athletes must start preparing now for the 2015 Pacific Games, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill says.

Speaking at welcome reception on Team PNG’s return from topping the XI Pacific Mini Games in Wallis and Futuna, O’Neill said the 2015 Pacific Games would be the next biggest regional sporting event.

He told the athletes the 2015 Games to be hosted by Port Moresby would be bigger and they had to prepare for it.

A team from the Games organising committee led by chairwoman Emma Waiwai attended the Wallis Games to present a report on preparations for the 2015 Games.

The organisers reassured the Pacific Games Council of its commitment to deliver the best ever games in 2015.
Waiwai announced the country would be ready to host all athletes and officials in 2015.

“The 2015 Pacific Games will be next and we will be ready for you,” she said.

The Games Organising Committee team in Wallis and Futuna hosted a dinner for Pacific Games Council executives and other officials.

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

30b) New sports chief for PNG Sports Foundation
By Online Editor
1:46 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, Papua New Guinea

Rugby union personality Peter Tsiamalili Jnr is the new acting Executive Director of the PNG Sports Foundation.

The appointment was announced last night by Sports and Pacific Games Minister Justin Tkatchenko in the presence of Public Service Minister Sir Puka Temu.

“Tsimalili will be acting in the position for three months,” Tkatchenko said.

He said the Tsiamalili was appointed by the Public Service Minister ahead of Walter Yongomina and Vince Onevagi on the recommendation of the PNG Sports Foundation.

“The position will be re-advertised and hopefully by the end of January a permanent appointment will be made by NEC. All the processes and requirements for this acting appointment were fully met and I thank Sir Puka for approving this.

“I look forward to working with Peter as he is a young energetic man who has a lot of experience and knowledge in sports administration,” the Minister said.Tsiamalili 35 from Tokoro, Amun in the Kunua district of West Bougainville returned to Buka in 2006 when his dad Peter Tsiamalili Snr passed away.

He was the former Operations manager of PNG rugby union and has been running his own business on Buka since then. Tsiamalili said he was honoured and looked forward to taking on the challenges in the Foundation’s office.

“I will carry out the duties and responsibilities to the best of my abilities over the next three months,” he said. He take up office today.

SOURCE:POST COURIER/ PACNEWS

30c) Knighthood for Tietjens, just don’t call him Sir
By Online Editor
1:44 pm GMT+12, 17/09/2013, New Zealand

Just call him Titch. Gordon Tietjens officially became a knight yesterday, bestowed the honour with the touch of a sword on each shoulder by Governor-General Jerry Mateparae.

But apart from the Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit medal pinned to his chest, the evergreen New Zealand sevens coach hadn’t changed a dot.

“It’s still Titch, no doubt,” he said when asked if he expected his players to start calling him Sir.

“I’ll always be known as Titch, by the players, and most people, so nothing will change.”

And that in a nutshell is why Tietjens’ honour will be such a popular one.

Not only has he been a Kiwi winner since 1994, but the 57-year-old has never lost sight of the wider role of his sport both in rugby and the community.

“It is a huge honour. To me, being knighted is a real reward for sevens rugby and the way it’s climbing up on the global scene. It’s a massive sport now going to the Olympics in 2016.

“Winning the tournaments is great because that’s why we’re in the game, but the younger players who launch their careers, that’s special to me,” he said after being congratulated by wife Julia and an assortment of family and close friends.

“When I see one of my players named in a Super Rugby side and going on to be an All Black.

“Even on the weekend [against South Africa] seven of my players who had been involved in my sevens were part of the test team.

“That’s special when you see younger players like Charles Piutau or Beauden Barrett who were involved in sevens in a big way. It’s great when you see them responding and playing as well as they are now.”

On a day when many of those having honours bestowed upon them for their work in search and rescue, the Pike River disaster and the Christchurch earthquake, “services to rugby” seemed a tad trivial.

However, over 20 years one wonders how many young men Tietjens has positively influenced. More than 30 of his charges have gone on to become All Blacks and with four Commonwealth Games gold medals, 11 IRB world series titles and two World Cups.

For countless more he and his sevens teams have provided us all with an example of continued and relentless pursuit of excellence.

Tietjens is looking forward to another barrage of good-hearted jibes about his new status when his sevens squad next assembles.

His ability to take people from different cultures and bring them together to work towards a common goal is one of his great attributes.

And therein lies the reason Tietjens, the individual not the rugby coach, has been knighted. He has forged a profession from a passion and it shows no sign of slowing down.

“I still have a passion for it and with an Olympic gold beckoning in 2016, I’d love to be part of the Olympics,” he said.

“That’s my drive, and my main drive now, of course, is trying to find some new younger players who can launch their careers to go on to become All Blacks.”

In an instant, he was back in game mode thinking about yet another World Series campaign and the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Tietjens would probably have lingered for hours on the governor-general’s lawn if anyone was keen to pass the day talking sevens. However, yesterday he was off to lunch with family to celebrate a rare acknowledgement away from a rugby field.

“It’s a very proud moment. I’m very humbled by the award. I owe it to a lot of people. I’m talking about family, friends, all the players who have been involved and my management teams… They’ve all been tremendous.

“I remember 1994 was my first year, I was very, very nervous to be the All Blacks sevens coach. To be still coaching in my 20th year is quite unbelievable and also the New Zealand Rugby Union have supported me in a huge way.

“A coach being around that long you don’t see often, so I owe them a huge thank you as well.”

SOURCE: PACNEWS

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