Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 993

MELANESIA

1) Graphic novel about West Papua released online

10 june 2014

A graphic novel advocating West Papuan independence has been released online, as part of efforts to provide an alternative version of the history of the Indonesian-run province.

The illustrated novel, which is called Vanishing Tribes: Unheard Voices from West Papua, is authored under the penname Ahinsa Angel, which means messenger of peace.

The project’s manager, who does not wish to be named, says most people don’t know that West Papua exists and cannot find it on a map.

He says the project’s main objective is to publicise the story of West Papua around the world and encourage readers to lobby their governments.

“I would like them to feel strongly enough after reading the book that they will take some action and hopefully influence those government policies so that their governments stop providing the military and diplomatic and financial support that really enables Indonesia to carry on the way they have been.”

The project manager for Vanishing Tribes, who does not wish to be named, says West Papua is a militarised democracy.

To view the novel, go to www.vanishingtribes.net. Radio NZ

2) Break up of Re-Appropriation
Anthony Kaybing
070614

The Autonomous Bougainville Government has appropriated K200 million for major development infrastructural projects for 2014 under the Special Intervention Fund.
ABG President Chief Dr John Momis said that the Re-Appropriation Bill that guarantees the ABG’s use of the SIF is one of compromise between the National Government and his Government and he expressed his gratitude to the Prime Minister, Peter O’Neil, for the funds.
The President urged the members of the Bougainville House of Representatives to appreciate this and use the funds to work hard to develop its capacity.
The break of the re-appropriation is as follows;

• Buka Ring Road – Upgrade and sealing K35 million
• Economic Feeder Roads – Scope, design, upgrading and maintenance K15 million
• Bougainville Bridges Replacements Arawa – Nagovis – Buin – survey, design, engineering K5 million
• South West Bougainville Roads (Nagovis, Siwai, Buin) – upgrade and maintenance K8 million
• Kokopau – Buin Road – upgrade and sealing K30 million
• Santoro Pass – survey and design K3 million
• Siara to Koropovo Road – design, upgrading and maintenance K3 million
• Aropa Airport – reopening, upgrading terminal and facilities for relocation K15 million
• Buka Airport – design and construction of upgrade of terminal K5 million
• Atolls & Coastal Shipping and Aviation – purchase of ship, scope, design maintenance of wharves and rural airstrips K7.5 million
• Bougainville Power Upgrages K5 million
• Water Supply and Sewage (Arawa and Buka) design and construction K14 million
• Public Services Infrastructure – housing K3 million
• 2015 ABG Elections – preparations and commitments K3 million
• ABG Project Management Unit – design, project management, supervision and reporting K5 million
• Hospital Development – scope, design and construct K5 million
• Panguna Mine Negotiations – support or consultations and negotiations K5 million
• Education Infrastructure – upgrades, design and construction K7.5 million
• Bougainville Peace Agreement – Awareness Activities K1 million
• Law and Justice and Weapons Disposal – facilities and program activities K4 million
• Churches – building maintenance and upgrades, church programs K2 million
• Support for Council of Elders – facilities, training and development plans K3 million

The break up equals up to the K200 million for the SIF funds intended for development projects in Bougainville.
The SIF is a conditional grant set up to cater for projects within Bougainville and is different from the unconditional Restoration and Development Grant which under the Bougainville Peace Agreement is an annual grant for Bougainville.
President said he was optimistic about asking the Prime Minister to increase the RDG to cater for more development projects in Bougainville.Dawnfm

3a) 100614 MAKE USE OF SCARCE RESOURCES
By Aloysius Laukai in Panakei

The Chairman of Pongo and chairman of Siwai Chairmen’s, DAVID MIKISA says Bougainville must make sure its scarce resources which Bougainville receives on behalf of Bougainville must be spent on development issues that will change Bougainville.
He made these remarks at the Opening of the South Bougainville Regional Member’s forum at Panekei mini town in Siwai, Soutyh West Bougainville this morning.
MR. MIKISSA said that the bottom up approach being initiated by MR. JOE LERA is not new but once again creates excitement to get Bougainvilleans to standup and be counted in developing Bougainville.
The Minister for Culture and Tourism,MRS. ROSE Pihei said that Bougainville needs to identify and promote one vision that will move Bougainville forward.
She said that Unity is the number one Pillar for the ABG under President Momis which our regional member, Joe Lera is promoting and must be supported by all Bougainvilleans.
The three-days Regional forum for South Bougainville was officially opened by the Regional member, JOE LERA in Panakei this morning.
The forum will officially end this Thursday and some projects initiated in the last forum last year in South Bougainville will be opened.Dawnfm

3b) 100614PUNGHAU EXPLAINS BOUGAINVILLE SITUATION
By Aloysius Laukai
The ABG Minister for Finance, Planning and Treasury, ALBERT PUNGHAU says that under the new ABG law on Public Finance Management all funds coming into Bougainville from Development Partners, NGOs and the four National Parliamentarians will have to be included in the ABG Budget.
He made these remarks at the opening of the Bougainville Regional Member’s Forum for South Bougainville at Panakei this morning.
MR. PUNGHAU said that currently funds for the four National members are done outside of the ABG Budget which will now have to come through the ABG Budget.
He said that their normal project approval committees for DSIP and PSIP will approve for funding but has to be reflected under the ABG Budget to make sure there is no duplication of funding of projects.
MR. PUNGHAU said that this will make sure that the funds for Bougainville creates some tangible projects for Bougainville.
He said Bougainville needs to unite and help with the progress of Bougainville.Dawnfm

3c) 100614DRIVEN BY A VISION
By Aloysius Laukai in Panakei
The Regional member for Bougainville, JOE LERA says that Bougainville leaders need to work together to shape the future of Bougainville.
He made these remarks when he officially opened the Regional Member’s forum in Panakei this morning.
He said that he was happy to work with the leaders of Bougainville to shape the future of Bougainville by approving projects that are requested by the Coe themselves.
MR. Lera that the bottom up approach he is engaged in is not new but reaffirms what President Momis has been talking about empowering the people to make the changes.
The Regional member’s forum is been attended by all ABG leaders from South Bougainville including Torokina and is the most attended leaders forum South Bougainville leaders have been working with.
They include all Executive Managers of Districts in South Bougainville.dawnfm,

3d) 100614 LEADERS VISION SYNCHRONIZE IN SOUTH BOUGAINVILLE
By Aloysius Laukai in Panakei
Dreams and visions between the Autonomous Bougainville Government and the Regional member for Bougainville, JOE LERA synchronized today at the opening of the Regional member’s forum in Panakei, Siwai, South West Bougainville.
A happy Regional member JOE LERA told New Dawn FM in Panakei today that today is the day he has been looking forward to working with the ABG for the sake of the people of Bougainville.
He made these remarks after the ABG Minister for Finance, Planning and Treasury, ALBERT PUNGHAU announced that with the enactment of the Bougainville Public Finance Management act, all funds coming to Bougainville will have to be in the ABG Budget book.
MR. LERA said that he has been trying to work and compliment the work of the ABG with counter funding of ABG Approved Projects and putting all these monies through the ABG Channelled will make sure all funds are channelled transparently and the people will see some tangible developments throughout Bougainville.
Meanwhile, Minister Punghau also told New Dawn FM in Panakei that he was happy that this has happened because the ABG was now in the process of strengthening processes to improve its handling of funds and other areas of development.Dawnfm

3e) 060614ADMINISTRATION RESHUFFLE

BY JENNIFER NKUI

The ABG government is currently looking at the reshuffle of the administration saying it wants trained people for the jobs.
ABG President Chief Dr. John Momis announced in parliament today that most of the public servants who are now working joined the public service during the crisis.
He explained that this does not mean that these public servants are not good for the job.
He said for every job, one must be trained to effectively and efficiently perform the required duties and responsibilities.
Dr. Momis said the positions will be advertised and he expects some good people to join the public service to help bring about change to Bougainville.dawnfm

3f) 050614ITA SPEAKS AGAINST FOREIGN INVESTORS
BY JENNIFER NKUI

Member for Kongara Dominic Itta told parliament today to carry out an enquiry into the operations of a foreign investment company currently operating in Bougainville.
He explained that under the trade and investment policy of Bougainville, foreign investors coming into Bougainville must be under the arrangement of a joint venture with Bougainvilleans.
He said foreigners coming into Bougainville must not operate businesses that the local people are operating and can operate such as guesthouses, wholesalers, petrol, workshops and others under the reserve list.
Mr. Itta said foreigners can come and operate industries that Bougainvilleans cannot operate.
He said one such company that the government should enquire into is the Pristine 101.
He said the company is now operating in downstream processing of copra right in the middle of Buka town.
Mr. Itta wants to know if Pristine 101 has given shares to ABG and under what agreements was the share equity signed.
He said under the former arrangement, ABG was to have some shares in that company.
With the current situation, Mr. Itta has asked the ABG government to carry out an enquiry so that everyone will be well informed of the arrangements of all foreign businesses coming into Bougainville.dawnfm

3g) 060614BOUGAINVILLE NOT READY FOR REFERENDUM
BY JENNIFER NKUI

Bougainville is not ready for referendum because there is no unity among its people, ABG president Chief Dr. John Momis says.
Speaking to Bougainville partners during the Bougainville development partners meeting in Buka today, he said Bougainvilleans do not share the same vision.
He said a lot of people are working to undermine the very government that the people of Bougainville have formed and shared blood over.
Dr. Momis said the very government that will mature into an independent government should the people of Bougainville choose independence is being undermined by its own people.dawnfm

3h) 060614CHURCHES TO TAKE LEAD
BY JENNIFER NKUI

ABG president Chief Dr. John Momis called on churches in the region today to lead the charges and bring about a new paradigm shift by in calculating the values of the Kingdom.
He said the values of the Kingdom includes human dignity, justice, concern for others, truth and preferential options for the poor.
He added that man is truly both the subject and object of development but must first be allowed to set his own priority and to solve his own problems.
Dr. Momis said with the help of the churches people will be empowered to make responsible decisions for referendum.
He said he believes that churches should take lead in developing people’s emotional intelligence to analyze things and to give people the sense of commitment after they have analyzed and realized some wrong has been committed.
He said referendum is in fact imminent, and it will not be long before the people of Bougainville will be asked to be ready to make responsible decisions.dawnfm


4) The value of VESP

by bobmakin

VESP is important to Vanuatu and almost fell off the bottom of today’s news post to the Digest. So that we do not lose sight of the importance of the project, here are some important facts from the press release concerning the recent meeting:

Australia and New Zealand help to improve education in Vanuatu

The Australian and New Zealand high commissions joined the Vanuatu Government in briefing education stakeholders about the Vanuatu Education Support Program (VESP) at a workshop on Thursday 5 June.

Education stakeholders with the Hon Bob Loughman, Minister of Education, Mr Simon Flores, Australian High Commission Counsellor (Development Cooperation), HE Georgina Roberts, New Zealand High Commissioner, and Mr Jesse Joe Dick, Director General at the Ministry of Education

Australia and New Zealand have been working with Vanuatu since independence to improve the quality of, and access to, education.

VESP aims to improve education outcomes in Vanuatu. It focuses on early childhood care and education and reducing barriers to accessing education for children in kindergarten to year three, including children with disabilities.

This year, 22 provincial trainers will train 700 primary teachers in practical, school-based training in effective teaching and learning. Five hundred literacy and numeracy kits will be distributed to over 400 primary schools across the country to help teach 25,160 children enrolled from year one to year three. The program also includes school grants to all primary schools to assist families with the cost of sending their children to school.

5) Vanuatu daily news digest | 10 June 2014

by bobmakin

  • The new building at the Vila Central Hospital (VCH) was handed over by Ambassador Takuji Hanatani to Prime Minister Natuman yesterday. PM Natuman praised the Japanese aid project for its recognition that a great deal of state of the art equipment would also be needed and for providing it. The new facility contains theOutpatients (six consulting rooms), Emergency, and Pharmacy departments, the operating theatre, and radiology section along with the laboratory.. The whole facility cost VT 1.4 billion all media report.
  • Japanese aid has performed an additional service to the health of Vanuatu through a study of the fitness of Pango village school children. It seems 20% of children in classes 4 to 6 are showing signs of obesity, Daily Post reports. This contrasts very unfavourably with Manua primary school at North Efate, showing only a 10% obesity figure. The prevalence of junk and unhealthy foods in town and parental lack of dietary control are blamed.
  • A delegation of Penama councillors has been visiting the capital to discuss the lack of development in the province with government. President Lonsdale Hinge said there aremany important development issues approved by the provincial government which seem to be held up in Port Vila. Radio Vanuatu News reported the meeting of the councillors from all three islands of the province and their planner with senior civil servants.
  • Social media it seems has now given the Rentabau Airport development the title of Skamfild because of the huge scam most likely involved in its creation and about to be unveiled in the report of the ad hoc committee to Parliament. Commentator to this blog, Nasimal, calls into doubt the business acumen of the PM and DPM who entered government into the project nearly a year ago.
  • VBTC News reported the Director of Forestry stating a compelling need for land owners to develop land lying idle for forestry purposes, by clearing “bush-rope” and planting commercially useful forest trees. Hannington Thaddee mentioned the importance of adding value to the land owners’ resource as soon as possible.
  • Dailky Post reports PM Natuman about to make his first visit to his home island of Tanna since recently taking office. He will visit villages on East, West and South Tanna and important government installations such as schools and the Lenakel hospital and the new road to Iakel custom village.
  • The Vanuatu Education Support Programme (VESP) has been discussing the progress of Vanuatu in achieving the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) in universal primary education. Vanuatu is unlikely to achieve the target of 100% in 2015, yesterday’s Daily Post pointed out. VESP is a joint project hugely funded by Australia and New Zealand.

POLYNESIA

6) Samoa’s first woman MP laid to rest

10 june 2014
The funeral was held this morning for Samoa’s first woman MP and former deputy parliamentary speaker, Le’aupepe Faimaala Martha Phillips.

The Head of State, the Prime Minister and MPs were among the mourners.

Le’aupepe, a nurse by profession, first entered Parliament for the Palauli i Sisifo constituency in 1970.

She served several terms and later became the first woman judge of the Lands and Titles court.

Le’aupepe Faimaala died last week in New Zealand where she had been living with her family.

She was 80 years old.Radio NZ

 7 ) Tonga to combat obesity


The Tongan government says it is overhauling its policies in a bid to deal with what it says is the biggest killer in the region – obesity.

10 june 2014
The Global Burden of Disease Study shows half of the adult population in Tonga is obese, making it the country with the highest proportion of obesity in the world.

The chief executive officer for the Tonga Ministry of Health, Siale Akauola says the government is committed to turning the situation around.

Dr Akauola says it plans to appoint a secretariat, who will specifically monitor the outcomes of projects fighting obesity, alongside the Non-Communicable Diseases Committee.

He says different government ministries will be tasked with fighting issues related to obesity.

“The Ministry of Agriculture will deal with food, the Ministry of Internal Affairs will deal with community participation, the Ministry of Education will deal with childhood obesity, will look at ways to support young people learn about good eating habits. The resources will be more efficiently utilised, cut across a whole lot of people. With that reform, we will slowly, slowly see improvement.”

Siale Akauola says the government has already increased tax on some unhealthy foods, but plans to apply a fat or sugar tax more widely.Radio NZ

8) Scheme aims to bring high speed internet to all in Tuvalu
By Online Editor
5:14 pm GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Tuvalu

The Tuvalu Telecommunications Corporation has signed a deal that aims to bring high speed internet to all of Tuvalu.

The multimillion dollar, five year satellite broadband deal with Kacific Singapore is expected to begin in late 2016, and plans to supply cheaper and faster broadband to the entire country.

The general manager for the Tuvalu Telecommunications Corporation, Simeti Lopati, says while the aim is for 100 percent coverage of the nation, schools are a key priority.

“At the moment, the schools and the medical clinics on the outer islands, they don’t have internet connection speed. Although the departments, they are quite advanced at looking at e-learning, but then the major bottleneck is to get the internet to the schools and the clinics.”

Lopati says the government has been trying to invest a lot into education and health, and he believes having internet on the outer islands will help those efforts.

He says it will also provide an important connection between the outer-islands and the main capital island, as well as the rest of the world.Radio NZ

9) Keeping Cook Islands Maori Alive Is Parent’s Responsibility: Secretary
Government can only do so much to promote language preservation

By Ben Chapman-Smith

RAROTONGA, Cook Islands (Cook Islands News, June 9, 2014) – Keeping the Cook Islands Maori language alive and thriving is a responsibility that ultimately lies with parents in their homes, says the Secretary for Culture.

Sonny Williams responded to comments made last week by Pastor Ngarima George, who said the Ministries of Culture and Education must to do more to ensure the language is spoken by future generations.

Both ministries are doing as much as they can, Williams said.

“We do run events and activities with a strong Maori content.”

Some examples of the Culture Ministry’s work include Te Mire Atu (Composers Competition), Mire Ura (Dancer of the Year), Te Maeva Nui (Cultural Festival), and sponsoring Maori speaking competitions in schools.

“At the end of the day, it really comes down to whether parents speak Maori to the children or not,” Williams said.

Asked whether he thinks many parents speak Maori to their children, he said: “Not many and decreasing”.

Williams said the Ministry of Culture battles every year to get Budget funding for all its activities.

Pastor George does not sit in on Budget bidding meetings witnessing the fight for funds to maintain cultural, arts and heritages programmes, he said.

“If he did, he wouldn’t be so quick to point fingers.”

The reduction in funding over the years has resulted in some activities being dropped, or taken up by the private, community and non-Government sectors.

“We don’t do and can’t do everything in the cultural and heritage sector. Some of these are carried out by others including, Voyaging Society for Ocean Voyaging, Vaka Eiva, Koutu Nui, Are Korero, Kau Taunga, Vairakau Maori, etc,” Williams said.

“We’ve been encouraging people like Ngarima to run Reo Maori Learning Classes.”

He also said the Ministry of Education is doing more now in teaching Maori than it has ever done before.

George would know this if he went and spoke to the Ministry, Williams said.

Cook Islands News

MICRONESIA


10) Medical team performs knee, hip replacements in Majuro
By Online Editor
10:11 am GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Marshall Islands

In a country with a hospital that frequently runs out of basic medicines and has backup generators that often don’t work when there is a city power outage, plunging the hospital into complete darkness, it would seem that sophisticated surgery for hip and knee replacements would be out of reach.

But a visiting United States medical team conducted more than a dozen hip and knee replacements at Majuro hospital in the Marshall Islands this past week. Although this surgery isn’t routinely offered in Majuro, the Canvasback Missions volunteer medical teams have been performing knee and hip replacements at both Majuro and Ebeye hospitals for several years, saving the government’s health ministry hundreds of thousands of dollars in expensive off-island medical referrals.

In the first four days of a 10-day visit, Canvasback doctors saw 163 patients and performed 11 surgeries. It is typical of the high-volume productivity these teams produce. Majuro hospital doctors pre-screen patients in the weeks prior to visits by the many specialty teams brought in by Canvasback — ear-nose-throat, orthopedics, obstetrics and gynecology — so the visiting doctors can respond quickly to the patients with the most urgent needs.

Jamie Spence, who with his wife Jacque founded Canvasback in the 1980s to provide medical services in the islands, said these visits provide Marshall Islands patients U.S.-level medical care for free, with the government’s health ministry paying a small fraction of the actual cost of the visit.

For orthopedic and dental team visits this month, half of a 40-foot container was loaded with crates of medical supplies, while the team itself brought two dozen large boxes of supplies.

Four medical team visits to the Marshall Islands last year cost the Marshall Islands US$142,500 for airfares, while Canvasback spent US$822,637 to bring the teams here. In addition, it shipped over US$500,000 worth of equipment and supplies to Ebeye and Majuro to support the teams, with most leftover supplies being donated for ongoing services, said Spence Friday.

By conducting 699 surgeries and procedures during the 2013 visits, Canvasback doctors saved the Ministry of Health additional money that would have been spent for off-island medical referrals.

Canvasback calculates the monetary value of services provided last year as over US$3.5 million, more than 20 times the Marshall Islands government’s investment to bring the teams of doctors and nurses from the United States.

An ear-nose-throat specialist team is expected to come to Majuro in late August.

SOURCE: MARIANAS VARIETY/PACNEWS

11) 600 Japanese Students To Spend A Month In Marianas
Group plus 230 staff, ‘to immerse themselves in [CNMI’s] history’

By Jayson Camacho

SAIPAN, CNMI (Saipan Tribune, June 10, 2014) – Six hundred Japanese students plus 230 staff and personnel will be visiting Saipan to immerse themselves in the history of the island this month.

According to Pacific Eagle Enterprise Inc. president Willie Matsumoto, the students will be arriving aboard a ship that will dock at Charlie Dock in Puerto Rico.

According to Matsumoto, the group is the 41st JC Japanese Youth Goodwill Cruise “Tokai-go” and consists of 600 students. They are expected to arrive this Wednesday, June 11.

The 230 staff and personnel will be arriving today, June 10, to prepare for the students upon initial arrival at 11pm.

Matsumoto said the students will be staying on the ship while it is docked at Charlie Dock, while the staff and personnel will be staying at the Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan.

“They will sail to Saipan for training, carrying youth who are responsible for creating the future of the next generation. The purpose of this visit is to learn the history of Saipan and experience tropical climate and fascinating culture of this beautiful island,” Matsumoto said in an earlier email to Saipan Tribune.

The Japan Travel Bureau’s Pacific Micronesian Tour on Saipan and Pacific Eagle will be working closely with the group.

JC Tokai group will also be hosting a party at Fiesta Resort’s beach side.

JC Tokai is a Junior Chamber of Commerce in Tokai district in Aichi, Gifu, Mie, and Shizuoka prefectures in Japan.

They have visited Saipan three times ranging from 500 to 600 students in 2000, 2007, and 2010.

“I hope that they have a wonderful experience, make a bond of friendship and goodwill between Japan and CNMI even if they stay a limited time. Nowadays, I heard, the Japanese arrival is always going down, but we always encourage to sell our wonderful destination to [the] Japanese,” Matsumoto said.
Saipan Tribune 

AUSTRALIA

12) Australia Post job cuts: Postal service confirms 900 jobs will go as part of restructure

Posted 10 June 2014, 17:02 AEST

Australia Post has told its workers 900 jobs will go as part of a restructure that will split its post and parcel businesses.

As fewer people post letters, and losses in that part of the business mount, the Government-owned company is planning to operate its retail, mail and communications services under the Australia Post brand, and its parcel post and express mail services under the StarTrack courier banner.

Australia Post says the changes will result in a leaner administration, with 900 managerial and support positions going over the next year, mostly from its head office in Melbourne.

It chief executive Ahmed Fahour says Australia Post’s front-line employees, such as posties and retail staff, will not be affected by the cuts.

“We have robust, well-established processes to manage these situations respectfully,” he said in a statement.

“We will also consult with the appropriate representatives of our employees throughout this process.”

Nicholas Reece, a public policy fellow at Melbourne University who was an adviser for former prime minister Julia Gillard, says foreign postal services have suffered far worse job cuts.

“If you look at postal businesses overseas they have had huge job losses in recent years,” he said.

“Royal Mail has lost about 50,000 jobs over the last decade, whereas the once mighty US Post has shed about 70,000 jobs in the last two years alone,” Mr Reece said.

Fahour says job cuts needed to avoid billion-dollar losses

Mr Fahour says the job cuts are needed as Australia Post heads towards billion-dollar annual losses due to a 30 per cent decline in letter volumes over the past five years, which is only expected to accelerate.

“Losses in letters are now, for the first time, overwhelming the profits we make in parcels,” he said.

“Furthermore, without postal services reform, the losses in our letters business will reach a billion dollars per annum within a few years. By making these changes now, we can minimise the impact for our people, our broader workforce, our business and the community.”

When Mr Fahour talks about “postal services reform”, one of the other changes expected is a move to persuade the Federal Government to cut Australia Post’s daily mail delivery service obligation to three, or even two, days a week.

He says Australia post has already made some moves in this direction.

“As the community becomes less reliant on our letters service, we need to fundamentally reform it,” he said.

“That’s why we have recently introduced an additional ‘regular’ letters service for business customers that is delivered according to a slower timetable and at a lower price than the ‘priority’ letters service that Australians are used to receiving five days a week.”

Australia Post recorded a $218 million loss in its domestic mail business in the last financial year.

The service says it has already publicised a proposal to reduce household deliveries from next year, which could see standard mail delivered only two or three days per week.

Earlier this year, Australia Post successfully lodged a request with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission to raise the basic postage rate from 60 cents to 70 cents to offset growing losses.

The pricing changes came into effect on March 31. The organisation has also flagged increases to the costs of business letter services, mail redirection services and some parcel products.

The Federal Government’s Commission of Audit recommended the service be privatised, but the Coalition decided not to put it up for sale.Radio Australia

NEW ZEALAND


13) Harawira wants amnesty for over stayers in NZ
By Online Editor
5:11 pm GMT+12, 10/06/2014, New Zealand

Our relations from the Pacific Islands must be protected. That from the
is to lift their fear of instant arrest and allow them to apply for legal residency.

As Hone Mana Party who want full amnesty for overstayers in New Zealand.

Harawira evaluates overseas oil companies moving in, Mana is calling for an open-armed approach to over stayers from the Pacific.

Harawira says, “It’s not as though they should all stay, but the weight should be lifted so they aren’t under pressure and they can send their children to school and work here in New Zealand.”

Mana says it’s an issue they’ll take to the negotiating table, suggesting that Labour may come on board. However, David Cunliffe says otherwise.

“Mana are getting ahead of themselves, it’s easy for minor partys to promise the world, major partys make rules.”

David Cunliffe pulled no punches as he emphasised who would ultimately hold the reins of power, something which Hone Harawira says has kept Labour’s Pacific MPs in line.

Harawira claims, “Labour says this is the line and so Su’a has held that, but I know he’s feeling for his relations who are forced to hide.”

According to figures from the Immigration Minister’s office, last year there were just over 13,000 over stayers in New Zealand. Half of those were from the Pacific Islands. The Minister. Michael Woodhouse  says if Mana’s policy goes ahead, that figure will rise.

“When people are aware that an amnesty could occur they become illegal and they stay in teh country until an amnesty is announced so it actually has the opposite effect.”

Only time will tell if Mana’s policy will gain legs or if it’ll be those over stayers who’ll be doing the walking.

SOURCE: MAORI TV/PACNEWS

TOK PISIN

14) Federal gavman system long Solomon Islands bai daonim wari long craim.

Updated 10 June 2014, 12:52 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Taim Solomon island igat Federal Gavman system bai daunim mak bilong ol craim insait long kapital Honiara

Odio: Deputi premia blong Guadalcanal provins long Solomon Islands Mr Walter Naezon i toktok wantaim Caroline Tiriman
Wanpla long time politisan na deputi premia blong Guadalcanal provins Walter Naezon i mekim despla toktok taem ol pipal i redi long holim National ileksan long pinis blong despla yia.

Long despla taem kantri isave bihaenim Provinsal gavman sistam, wankaen olsem Papua New Guinea.

Mr Naezon itok sopos kantri igat federal sistam em bai helpim ol pipal long noken kam long Honiara olgeta taem blong painim wok.

Em ilaik lukim ol wokim senis long mama lo bilong kantri bilong opim rot bilong federal Gavman System.

Mr Naezon itok , nau long despela taim, ol provincial gavman inonap long wokim samting long laik bilong ol bikos National Gavman i bos long olgeta samting.

Em itok tu olsem bihain despela system nau- Gavman tu ino save sikelim bigpela moni long ol provincial gavman na olgeta taim ol provincial gavman mas igo beg long National Gavman.

Deputi premia blong Guadalcanal provins long Solomon Islands Mr Walter Naezon.Radio Australia

FRENCH

15) Brèves d’Australie et du Pacifique – mardi 10 juin 2014

Mis à jour 10 June 2014, 19:29 AEST
Caroline Lafargue

  • En Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée, un village d’orpailleurs illégaux a été entièrement brûlé vendredi près de la mine de Porgera.

Une femme fouille la terre en quête d’or, à Porgera. Les conditions de vie de ces forçats sont extrêmement dures.
Les agents de sécurité de la mine d’or de Porgera ont fait une descente à l’aube et incendié les 200 maisons de Wingima, dont quelques unes étaient en dur, précise le quotidien « Post Courier ». Des milliers de familles sont désormais sans abri. C’est la deuxième fois que le village est brûlé, pour les mêmes raisons : expulser les orpailleurs illégaux. Un Australien qui prenait des photos des maisons en cendres, a été attaqué par la foule en colère, et blessé.

  • Le Japon va envoyer une équipe aux Îles Marshall. Elle examinera les 20 corps de soldats japonais qui sont remontés à la surface sur l’île d’Enniburr, près de l’atoll de Kwajalein. Mais ils ne rapatrieront pas les corps sans le feu vert de l’armée américaine, qui contrôle la zone. Des millions de soldats japonais de la Seconde guerre mondiale sont enterrés dans divers pays d’Asie et du Pacifique. Le gouvernement japonais essaie de rapatrier les corps. C’est Tony de Brum, le ministre marshallais des Affaires étrangères, qui a évoqué le premier 26 corps de soldats japonais – en fait ils sont 20, en marge d’une réunion de l’ONU sur le climat en Allemagne la semaine dernière. Car ils ont affleuré après une forte tempête qui a accéléré l’érosion côtière. Selon Tony de Brum, ces corps sont remontés à cause du changement climatique, et de l’élévation du niveau de l’océan.
  • Nouvelle-Zélande: il promet des glaces gratuites et de donner des lamas aux enfants pauvres pour qu’ils gagnent leur vie en démarrant un élevage. Ben Uffinde veut également augmenter les impôts des pauvres, réduire ceux des riches, afin d’inciter les gens à sortir de la pauvreté. En Nouvelle-Zélande, n, le directeur-fondateur du journal satirique The Civilian a créé son parti, le Parti des Civils. Et vendredi dernier il a reçu des fonds de la commission électorale. 33 600 dollars kiwis, soit le montant minimal accordé à un parti pour faire campagne. Le parti pour la légalisation du cannabis a obtenu la même enveloppe. Mais le porte-parole du syndicat des contribuables est outré. Il demande à ces pseudos partis de ne pas accepter cet argent. Les Néo-Zélandais éliront leurs nouveaux parlementaires le 20 septembre prochain.
  • Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée: les expulsés de Paga Hill demandent justice. Les 300 habitants de ce bidonville de Port-Moresby affirment avoir été transférés de force sur un autre terrain, Six Mile, toujours à Port-Moresby. Selon les expulsés, les policiers sont arrivés armés de machettes et de haches, menaçant de blesser les témoins qui prenaient des photos. La police nie avoir été violente. Mais l’Initiative internationale contre les Crimes d’État va porter l’affaire auprès du Rapporteur Spécial de l’ONU sur le droit à un logement décent. Il s’agit d’un centre de recherches auquel collaborent des universitaires anglais et américains.
  • Samoa américain: le lait en poudre pour bébés reste disponible, mais seulement sur ordonnance. La maternité LBJ souhaite que toutes les jeunes mamans allaitent leur bébé, car le lait maternel est meilleur pour la santé de l’enfant. La direction de la maternité réagit ainsi à une étude selon laquelle la majorité des femmes enceintes affirment vouloir allaiter à 100%, mais après l’accouchement elles adoptent un régime mixte – allaitement et lait en poudre.
  • Îles Salomon: la Fondation Fred Hollows va construire une clinique ophtalmologique ultra moderne, financée par le gouvernement néo-zélandais. 11 000 Salomonais pourront s’y faire opérer des yeux chaque année. Et c’est une bonne nouvelle pour les pays voisins, plus besoin d’aller en Australie ou en Nouvelle-Zélande pour se faire soigner les yeux.
  • Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée: l’Australie met les moyens à Manus. Elle vient de débloquer des fonds pour reconstruire le commissariat de Lorengau, sur l’île. Le gouvernement australien s’assure de la coopération de la police papoue, car la situation est toujours très tendue au centre de rétention de Manus, depuis les émeutes de la mi-février.
  • Tonga: il faut cibler les hommes. Le pays détient le record mondial d’obésité. La moitié de la population adulte est obèse. La directrice de l’association Civil Society estime qu’il faut sensibiliser les hommes en priorité. Selon Drew Havea, les Tongiennes commencent à comprendre l’intérêt de faire de l’exercice et d’avoir une alimentation équilibrée, mais les hommes sont paresseux. L’obésité est un fléau qui n’est pas uniquement lié aux fast-food et à la nourriture importée, c’est aussi un problème culturel à Tonga où il est bien vu d’être corpulent.
  • Radio Australia

WORLD

16) Drop in imports

Bbc News
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

CHINA’S exports grew in May but a drop in imports signalled a possible weakening of demand in the world’s second-largest economy.

The country’s exports rose by 7 per cent in May compared with 12 months before.

But imports fell by 1.6 per cent on a year earlier.

It meant the nation’s trade surplus widened sharply to $US35.9billion ($F65b), from April’s $US18.5b ($F33b) the General Administration of Customs said.

The figures will add to recent concern about the state of the Chinese economy.

It has shown signs of weakness amid poor data from the manufacturing and retail sectors.

The country’s commerce ministry had hoped the trade picture would pick up in May.

Some experts believe the weak trade figures are partly because of an unnatural comparison with last year, when there was a glut of fake invoicing of exports as a way of getting around impending currency restrictions.

17) Inmates flee on chopper

Afp
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

MONTREAL – Three inmates deemed extremely dangerous by police have escaped from a Canadian jail in a helicopter, the second such daring prison break recently in Quebec.

In March 2013, two inmates were lifted on a hijacked helicopter from a prison north of Montreal. They were both quickly re-arrested, along with the two accomplices.

Police are now asking for the public’s help in tracking down Yves Denis, 35, Denis Lefebvre, 53, and Serge Pomerleau, 49 — all accused of mafia ties — after the Saturday night jailbreak in Quebec province.

“The helicopter landed in a courtyard at the detention centre,” police spokeswoman Ann Mathieu said.

HEALTH

18) Volunteers in PNG help reduce stigma surrounding AIDS

10 June 2014
A community worker in Papua New Guinea’s Goroka says one of the key successes in helping reduce stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS has been using local volunteers who can speak the local language.

Steve Layton is the co-director of ATprojects in Goroka, which revolves around community home-base care, with 42 volunteers working in 10 communities.

He says they are currently providing assistance to over 200 people with full-blown AIDS, and all volunteers are trained to do pre-counselling for those who seek assistance.

Mr Layton says they’ve had real success with lowering the level of stigma by using local volunteers that locals feel comfortable confiding in.

“That means in a community, your Mum, Dad, Aunty, Uncle, second cousin may be a volunteer. It seems to be much easier at least, for people to go and talk to their close relatives in a clan and say look, I may have a problem, what can I do? Rather than some complete stranger who may or may not visit and most probably can’t speak the local language. And that seems to be a real key.”

The co-director of ATprojects in Goroka, Steve Layton.Radio NZ

POLITIC

19) mO’Neill stands by loans

Source:
The National, Tuesday June 10th, 2014

PRIME Minister Peter O’Neill has defended the Government’s decision to increase its level of borrowing, saying it was needed to “bring forward vital services” such as free education and health care.
He was responding to the latest Moody’s Investors Services report which highlighted the Government’s “amending of fiscal rules to accommodate the consequently large increase in debt, allowing for a rise in debt beyond statutory limits and eroding the country’s track record of fiscal prudence”.
O’Neill welcomed the report’s “observations” on the debt level, saying they “will be considered by the Treasury and other departments and agencies” but that it was a right decision.
“I remain firmly of the view that Government’s decision to increase debt to bring forward vital services such as free education and improved health services, as well as important infrastructure such as highways
and roads, has been the right decision for our nation and our people,” he said.
“The report points out the commencement of LNG exports will deliver significant revenue inflows to the Government as will the several other gas development projects now going through the approval processes.
“The position Moody’s have outlined on debt and debt reduction will of course be carefully considered by the government.
“But the Government stands by the decision to carefully increase borrowings in the certain knowledge that it was needed to improve living standards, and maintain growth in the face of the significant mining downturn.”
He welcomed Moody’s confirmation of PNG’s sovereign rating remaining at B1 (stable outlook).
O’Neill said PNG’s B1 rating reflected the expectation the Government would undertake fiscal consolidation in line with its medium-term fiscal strategy.
“This confirmation provides the best possible answer to the small number of people with vested interests and pushing anti-government agendas who have been trying to undermine PNG and our future,” O’Neill said.
“The scare mongering and spreading of total falsehoods about our economic future is totally deplorable and contrary to the national interest.
“Moody in a comprehensive report have confirmed our sovereign rating is unchanged, despite the considerable economic challenges we have faced principally brought about by low prices for our major mining exports.
“The report confirms the government’s estimate that PNG will achieve world-beating GDP growth of 21% in 2015.”
O’Neill said strong economic growth driven by further gas development, including downstream processing, as well as spending on economically-beneficial infrastructure and small and medium sized business growth, would help provide the revenue needed to reduce debt.

20) New Caledonia President Hopes For Peaceful Independence Referendum
Ligeard lays out agenda for her term in office

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 10, 2014) – New Caledonia’s new president says she hopes the territory can have a referendum on the fate of its French connection without reliving past bloodshed.

Cynthia Ligeard became the territory’s second female president late last week and is cautiously optimistic the prospects are good for a peaceful independence referendum, due in the next five years.

Ms Ligeard, who supports New Caledonia remaining a special part of France, said on Sunday peoples’ strong memories are a powerful motivator for a non-violent process but she says there are no guarantees.

She says the threat of extremism is still there and that is something that needs to be kept an eye on.

Ms Ligeard who is the former tourism board head says economic and social reform are high on her agenda during her term in office and she is keen to increase airline access and boost traveller numbers with a particular focus on Australians.

She also plans to tackle domestic violence.

Radio New Zealand International 

21) Fiji Labour Party leader accuses LTA of harrassment

10 june 2014
The Fiji Lands Transport Authority has been pressured to remove its suspension of a bus company’s licence, and accused of harrassment.

The Fiji Labour Party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry, says the LTA suspended the licence of Empire Buses despite not issuing any defect notice on the company beforehand.

He alleges corrupt practices at the LTA, saying senior officials have engaged in “planned harassment” before suspending the licence.

Mr Chaudhry says nineteen buses were taken off the roads, all with valid certificates of road worthiness.

He says the bus company, based in Ba, was servicing the area with 15 buses and the suspension of the fleet means the bus routes are now poorly serviced.

The Land Transport Authority did not respond to requests for comment.Radio NZ

22) Fiji Voter Education To Begin On June 16
First 18 ‘civic educators’ to be joined by 22 others to provide trainings

By Vuniwaqa Bola-Bari

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, June 10, 2014) – The Fijian Elections Office will begin its voter education programme on June 16.

This was confirmed yesterday after 18 civic educators were inducted by the Supervisor of Elections, Mohammed Saneem.

“The civic educators are part of the Voter Education Programme which kicks off on June 16th.” Speaking to the new 18 civic educators, Saneem said the task entrusted to them was an important one where their responsibility was to explain the new electoral system to the Fijian people so that voters were prepared for Election Day by knowing how to vote and how their votes would be counted.

“We will soon recruit 22 more civic educators to compliment your work; the 2014 Election is a historic occasion in our nation’s history and the Fijian people have great expectations of us.

It is up to us to uphold these expectations.” “Through the course of your training, we will teach you how to use simple language to explain the different issues, although you must be aware that some people will understand the new system straight away, while others might need a little more time.” “I expect that you will remain calm, approachable, friendly and patient under any circumstance.

Remember to always treat others the way you would expect to be treated yourselves,” Saneem said.

The civic educators will go out in to the communities around the country to educate and help inform the general public on the 2014 General Elections and this is the first batch of civic educators.

Saneem reminded the new recruits that they would be required to work according to a plan and to listen to instructions of the coordinators.

Fijilive

MEDIA

23) Journos focus on economic reporting

By Ropate Valemei
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Update: 2:30PM MORE than 10 best Business reporters in the Pacific region gathered in Samoa this morning for a workshop that will unveil ways to tackle difficult bits of economic and business reporting.

The Business and Economic Reporting workshop is organised by the Pacific Media Assiatance Scheme (PACMAS).

Workshop facilitator and ABC Radio Pacific Business and Economic reporter Jemima Garrett says the program covers economic forecasting, how to interpret figures on government budgets and business reports.

“Economic reporting is important for the future of any country in the Pacific,” Ms Garrett said.

The three-day workshop ends on Thursday.http://www.fijitimes.com/

24) Media Freedom Leading Up To Fiji Elections Questioned
Critics worry self-censorship hinders proper reporting

By Liam Fox

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, June 10, 2014) – Concerns about media freedom in Fiji are again being raised as the country gets ready for its first democratic election in nearly eight years.

But Communications Fiji Limited, or CFL, dismisses those concerns.

“I can tell you there’s been no pressure, there’s been no calls, no threats made,” said CFL news director Vijay Narayan.

“We report on whatever we want to report on.”

CFL broadcasts 60 news bulletins a day in three languages from its studios in Suva.

Some critics say CFL hasn’t faced any pressure because it’s taken a pro-government line.

Mr Narayan rejects that.

“Is being balanced being pro-government?

“Some people have that perception because they’ve just taken one side.

“When the coup occurred they (CFL) covered one side, they covered the other side.”

Mr Narayan says the balance in the network’s coverage can be seen in its coverage of recent criticism of the Prime Minister’s claim to have the political support of the country’s chiefs.

Media observers claim the government’s 2010 media decree is an example of ongoing intimidation.

It bans anything from being printed or broadcast which is not in the public interest.

Journalists who breach the vaguely worded provision can be jailed for up to two years.

“You have legislation that makes it very difficult for publishers to deal with anything that appears to be critical of government and you have five years of journalists not asking tough questions, probably becoming complacent, apathetic, even lazy if you like,” said former Fiji Times editor Natani Rika.

Mr Rika left the English language daily in 2010 after the owner, News Corp, was forced to sell the business to comply with the regime’s local ownership rules.

“Prior to that there was some incidents of detention by the military and the police and the smashing of my car and attempt to burn my home,” he said.

Mr Rika says while there are no longer censors in newsrooms as there were in 2009 – the media decree means self-censorship is pervasive.

“All these conditions come together to form a climate I suppose of media that is unlikely to be able to provide a critical analysis of what’s happening leading up to the elections,” he said.

There is one publisher pushing the boundaries.

Republika magazine’s readership is small but it’s doing what no other publisher is: providing in-depth analysis of current affairs and a space for non-government opinion.

“If it was any other time in Fiji’s history, what we are doing, people would not bat an eyelid but I think its just because we have decided to give voice to people and issues that have for quite a number of years now,” said Republika editor Ricardo Morris.

Mr Morris says although censorship and intimidation is less overt, the media is still far from free.

“Everyone knows if you get on the wrong side of the Attorney-General, for example if you report something that he doesn’t like, if you are overheard saying something that he feels is not right and you shouldn’t be saying there are implications for you and your company.”

And although Mr Morris continues to publish what we wants to – he’s under no illusions about the impact of his coverage on Frank Bainimarama’s government.

Neither does he think Fijians will be adequately informed when they cast their votes in the September elections.

“Right now, I don’t think that people are being informed to the level at which they should be informed about the issues that are at play simply because a lot of the issues the media will not touch or will sort of skirt over,” he said

Natani Rika agrees, saying coverage of the campaigning ahead of the September poll could highlight the timidity in the mainstream Fijian media.

“What troubles me is that because the media is unable, or unwilling to cover some of these issues it’ll lead to a lot of hearsay and rumour, unsubstantiated accusations and that’s not healthy going into an election campaign,” Mr Rika said.

But Communications Fiji Limited’s Vijay Narayan is confident his readership will be able to make an informed decision about who to vote for.

“We are reporting on everyone, on what they are doing and of course we are not favouring any one particular party,” he said.

“We will remain balanced throughout.”

Radio Australia

BUSINESS

25) 800 plus get training

Source:
The National, Tuesday June 10th, 2014

More than 800 individuals graduated last Friday with certificates in financial literacy, and other skills.
Robert Evah, trainer and team leader, said the trainings were aimed at equipping the grandaunts with skills they would require to sustain themselves by starting up small businesses.
Those who underwent trainings were drawn from all part of Port Moresby, with particular focus on those who were disadvantaged.

26) PNG can increase beef

Source:
The National, Tuesday June 10th, 2014

Papua New Guinea can raise its game in terms of beef production, New Britain Palm Oil chief executive officer Nick Thompson said.
Thompson said with the right investment climate, PNG could be self-sufficient in production of beef.
He said NBPOL beef herds at Ramu in Madang, and Numundo in West New Britain had increased over recent years.
“We intend to continue to build our herd in the Ramu valley.”
Thompson said some smaller beef producers were closed due to the lack of good investment climate.
“Unfortunately, many smaller beef herds have been disbanded such as the one at Markham Farms.
“The government, over many years, has had an ineffective strategy to encourage domestic beef production.
“The recent move by the Bank of PNG to put kina exchange rates up to 41 US cents have again signalled a complete disconnect between the government’s actions and it’s stated intent to back agriculture and domestic food production.”
“Making imports cheaper and allowing dumping of often poor quality meat products into the PNG market does nothing to encourage beef producers in PNG.
“With the right investment climate, PNG could be self-sufficient in meat over a 10-15 year programme.”
Thompson added: “This requires consistency of policy and commitment.
“PNG agriculture cannot afford an artificially high exchange rate that allows the likes of Australia and New Zealand unfettered access to the long term detriment to our own farmers.

27) PNG grows stronger
By Online Editor
5:18 pm GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea is on track to achieve its forecast 21% gross domestic product growth next year despite concern hanging over its current debt level, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill says.

He was responding to Moody’s Investors Service report which says the country’s start-up last month of liquefied natural gas exports “is a transformative development that will positively impact economic growth, the government’s fiscal position, and the balance of payments”.

The reports says: “The successful implementation of this large investment – the PNG LNG Project – paves the way for additional projects that will more productively monetise the country’s ample endowment of energy and mineral resources.

It also supports the prospects for sustaining PNG’s recent track record of high growth.”

O’Neill welcomed Moody’s confirmation of the country’s sovereign rating which remains at B1 (stable outlook), saying critics of the Government should stop “scaremongering and spreading falsehoods about our economic future”.

“The report confirms the Government’s estimate that PNG will achieve world-beating gross domestic growth of 21% in 2015,” he said.

“Moody’s have confirmed our sovereign rating is unchanged, despite the considerable economic challenges we have faced principally brought about by low process for our major mining exports.”

Moody’s conclusions were contained in its just-released credit analysis which looks at the country’s credit profile in terms of economic strength (assessed as low); institutional strength (very low); fiscal strength (high) and susceptibility to event risk (moderate).  They represent the four main analytic factors in its sovereign bond rating methodology.  The analysis constitutes an annual update to investors and is not a rating action.

The report describes the PNG LNG project  as “the most notable economic development of the past few years, and perhaps of PNG’s relatively short history as a country”.

Moody’s report however points out the country’s current risks, including the government debt level.

“Fiscal rules have been continually amended to accommodate the consequently large increases in debt, allowing for a rise in debt beyond statutory limits and eroding the country’s track record of fiscal prudence,” it says.

“Primary fiscal surpluses have reverted to increasingly wide deficits since 2012, although funding pressures have been muted, given the government’s reliance on low-cost domestic sources of financing.

“Revenue growth has been adversely impacted by developments in the mining sector – including lower global prices for the country’s commodity exports – and the situation reflects in part the lack of diversification in the economy.

“At the same time, the run-up in public spending leverages upon the fiscal space afforded by the decade-long decline in the government’s debt burden, while also assuming significant revenue accretion from LNG exports over the near-term.”.

Meanwhile, O’Neill has defended the Government’s decision to increase its level of borrowing, saying it was needed to “bring forward vital services” such as free education and health care.

He was responding to the latest Moody’s Investors Services report which highlighted the Government’s “amending of fiscal rules to accommodate the consequently large increase in debt, allowing for a rise in debt beyond statutory limits and eroding the country’s track record of fiscal prudence”.

O’Neill welcomed the report’s “observations” on the debt level, saying they “will be considered by the Treasury and other departments and agencies” but that it was a right decision.

“I remain firmly of the view that Government’s decision to increase debt to bring forward vital services such as free education and improved health services, as well as important infrastructure such as highways
and roads, has been the right decision for our nation and our people,” he said.

“The report points out the commencement of LNG exports will deliver significant revenue inflows to the Government as will the several other gas development projects now going through the approval processes.

“The position Moody’s have outlined on debt and debt reduction will of course be carefully considered by the government.

“But the Government stands by the decision to carefully increase borrowings in the certain knowledge that it was needed to improve living standards, and maintain growth in the face of the significant mining downturn.”

He welcomed Moody’s confirmation of PNG’s sovereign rating remaining at B1 (stable outlook).

O’Neill said PNG’s B1 rating reflected the expectation the Government would undertake fiscal consolidation in line with its medium-term fiscal strategy.

“This confirmation provides the best possible answer to the small number of people with vested interests and pushing anti-government agendas who have been trying to undermine PNG and our future,” O’Neill said.
“The scare mongering and spreading of total falsehoods about our economic future is totally deplorable and contrary to the national interest.

“Moody in a comprehensive report have confirmed our sovereign rating is unchanged, despite the considerable economic challenges we have faced principally brought about by low prices for our major mining exports.

“The report confirms the government’s estimate that PNG will achieve world-beating GDP growth of 21% in 2015.”

O’Neill said strong economic growth driven by further gas development, including downstream processing, as well as spending on economically-beneficial infrastructure and small and medium sized business growth, would help provide the revenue needed to reduce debt.

SOURCE: THE NATIONA/PACNEWS

28) Air Niugini Employees Threaten Strike Over Layoffs
Airline announcement that 10% of staff to lose jobs angers workers

By Denyse Kalau And Doreen Philip

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, June 10, 2014) – The National Airlines Employees Association is planning to go on strike over the management’s decision to lay off 250 staff.

This was announced last week during an open forum held by employees of Air Niugini in response to media reports that the company was planning to lay off 10 percent of its work force.

“If the management does not meet the demands of the workers within seven days, we will go on strike,” an angry employee said.

He said the management’s decision to sack 250 workers is not in the best interest of the bulk of the employees.

[PIR editor’s note: PNG Post-Courier reported that “Air Niugini management will not only cut jobs but also review schedules and all other measures to cut cost. … The cost cutting measures will not only affect Papua New Guineans but non-nationals as well working with Air Niugini, the company said.”]

A woman who has been serving the company for 10 years said there are other areas that the management should consider instead of reducing the workforce.

She said they should look into matters such as recruitment of employees especially expatriates and the procedures involved in the selection.

She said most of the expatriates lack the skills and the technical expertise to perform some of the tasks.

She said expatriates who do not meet the selection criteria should be repatriated to their own countries since the positions have been localised to the nationals.

According to the president of the association, Theodorah Sapuri, the laying off of 250 workers is part of Air Niugini’s value enhancement exercise to minimise costs.

“The members have requested that the management suspend its decision to lay off workers. They have given them seven days to respond. If the management fails to meet their demands they will stop work,’’ she said.

PNG Post-Courier

29) Workshop to Boost Fiji Fashion Industry
By Online Editor
5:37 pm GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Fiji

— Around 50 participants involved in the Fiji fashion industry are attending a two and a half day workshop organised by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) in partnership with the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat from 10th – 12th June 2014 at the Forum Secretariat Conference Centre, Suva.

The workshop is part of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Cultures + project, funded by the European Union and managed by SPC, which is designed to strengthen the cultural industry in Fiji, Samoa and the Solomon Islands.

The Fiji fashion industry workshop would address the immediate needs of the Fiji Fashion Council as the peak representative body of the fashion industry in Fiji.

“There is much economic potential in the cultural and creative industry in the Pacific region but there is still a lot of work that needs to be done to be able to realise this economic value,” says Shiu Raj, Director Economic Governance Programme at the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.

“The EU funded ACP Cultures + project is designed to address the gaps at both the private sector and government levels, by involving industry players and government officials.”

“With a new strategic plan and a clearer membership model, the Fiji Fashion Council will be better equipped to carry out is primary roles and responsibilities,” Raj said.

Participants involved in the workshop include a cross section from the local fashion industry including Fiji Fashion executives, retailers, models, and designers. Observer from Samoa and Solomon Islands are also attending the workshop.
SOURCE:PIFS/PACNEWS

30) Education grants

Atasa Moceituba
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

WESTPAC Fiji Banking Corporation launched its Women’s Education Grant 2014 in Suva yesterday.

The program offers women and girls a chance to gain financial assistance to help in the cost of their education.

Westpac’s head of retail Michael Mjasklo said they had been organising and offering recipients assistance for the past four years because the bank recognised the critical link between learning and the broader empowerment of women across the Pacific region.

“Westpac is offering a total of nine education grants in Fiji for this round — three $400 grants for primary school, three $1000 grants for high school or secondary college students and three $2150 grants for tertiary students or workers who would like to study,” he said.

Last year’s recipient and first year USP student Vasenai Lauta said she was given an opportunity to advance her studies.

“The grant has given me the opportunity to be exposed to an environment where I’ve always dreamed of being in,” she said.http://www.fijitimes.com/

31) Make laws, codes simple

Geraldine Panapasa
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

THE Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority must make tax laws and codes simple to allow companies and businesses to engage in productive things rather than how to get through the legislations, says FMF Foods CEO Ram Bajekal.

In a FRCA statement yesterday, Mr Bajekal said there was also a need for the authority to resolve issues in a timely manner.

“We must all understand that we pay tax for the facilities we enjoy as a citizen and business,” he said.

Mr Bajekal and Marco Polo/Garden City creator Wah Sing were invited to address FRCA officers recently on FRCA’s relationship with its stakeholders and nurturing small and micro enterprises.

Mr Sing emphasised the need to nurture family-based businesses in the country, adding those businesses run by people who would stay in the country.

“In such family businesses, the founders are often the last to have extensive knowledge and more importantly interest in the business as the newer generation or their or their children often opt for greener pastures,” he said.

FRCA CEO Jitoko Tikolevu said balancing the responsibility of their $2billion target and ensuring best customer service were challenges they faced.

“This is the first time that the authority’s target will surpass the $2b target. While our officers will be focusing on this target, it is important that we do not compromise the quality of our services.

“It is important that we continue to listen to our customers, that we continue to engage with them and ensure that we continue to provide quality service.”http://www.fijitimes.com/

LAW&ORDER

32) POM walk focuses on all levels of stealing

Source:
The National, Tuesday June 10th, 2014

A GROUP of people taking part in the “Walk Against Corruption” campaign have been told that stealing destroys lives.
Transparency International PNG chairman Lawrence Stephens told the participants of the Sir Anthony Siaguru Walk Against Corruption last Sunday in Port Moresby that only a small number of corrupt activities were seen and dealt with.
“These are only minor thefts by comparison to what can take place across the country when you have people ready to give away 10% of the land to foresters who want to come and steal whatever that they can get, when you have people who collude with foreign interests to give away your future,” he said.
“People are stealing from us. Keep that in mind. These are thefts from you and your children.”
Scores of students in Port Moresby joined public servants and private sector workers in the walk themed: “Zero Corruption – 100% development”.
The walk began at 7am from Jack Pidik Park, along Boroko Drive, Spring Garden Road, Waigani Drive up to the 4-Mile roundabout, along Hubert Murray Highway and back to the park.
Stephens said people had the opportunity to translate wealth from the LNG export to development.
“We are celebrating the first export of liquefied natural gas from PNG. It has been a festival. There has been great excitement and an inflow of wealth is expected,” he said.
“You’ve taken a step today and keep telling the world that we are not going to put up with corruption anymore. We are going to change, we will force change, we can do it and we will do it, and you’re examples of those who are going to do it.”

33) Top judge dismisses PNG Police Comissioner appeal

By Online Editor
5:22 pm GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Papua New Guinea

The Supreme Court application by Papua New Guinea Police Commissioner Tom Kulunga to appeal his conviction of contempt by the National Court, was dismissed today by the Chief Justice, Sir Salamo Injia.

Injia dismissed the appeal against Kulunga’s conviction, saying it was in the best interest of maintaining the status quo within the judiciary.

Commissioner Kulunga was found guilty of contempt last month, for failing to follow previous court orders to re-instate former National Capital District top cop, Geoffrey Vaki to the police force.

The contempt ruling was made by Deputy Chief Justice, Gibbs Salika, who will be handing down punishment on Kulunga this Friday.

While ruling on the sentence is yet to be made, Kulunga through his lawyers, the principal of Manase Lawyers, Alfred Manase, and Lance Okil of Parua Lawyers, failed in the supreme court application to grant interim relief while a determination on the appeal of his conviction is made.

Before dismissing Kulunga’s Supreme Court appeal, Injia said he would base his ruling in the overall interest of justice.

He considered three factors in his ruling and they were based on the following:

*That the court must be satisfied on the grounds  of the appeal;

*Of the balance of convenience for the court; and

*the discretion of the court to preserve the status quo.

When the appeal came before Injia, he said it was a first and asked Manase and Okil that other similar preceding cases must be submitted for the court to consider. He stated that Kulunga had every right to appeal his conviction but normal practice would see that made after a ruling on sentencing.

Injia dismissed the appeal and stated that Kulunga could appeal again once his sentence is ruled on, on Friday.

Meanwhile, Injia is looking to invoke the court’s powers and summon the principal of Parua Lawyers, Margaret Parua, and lawyer Sam Bonner, who represented Geoffrey Vaki in Kulunga’s Supreme Court appeal, after consent orders were signed by the parties to settle the matter out of court and not through the appeal.

Injia said he was in the middle of preparing his ruling on the application when the consent orders signed by the lawyers to settle the matter between Kulunga and Vaki outside were made and submitted to his office.

He said this was an abuse of the court and that he is considering invoking the court’s powers to charge them for contempt. That will be heard tomorrow afternoon.
SOURCE: LOOP PNG/PACNEWS

34) 200 Homes Near PNG’s Porgera Mine Burned By Security Personnel
Allegations that structures housed illegal miners disputed by angry villagers

By Johnny Poiya

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, June 10, 2014) – More than 200 houses were burnt to the ground in Porgera by security personnel in the call-out operation during an early morning raid on Friday.

There have been claims that the houses, belonging to landowners of the special mining lease area, have accommodated illegal miners.

Angry locals from Wingima village, where the raid was conducted, in retaliation attacked and injured an Australian man trying to take pictures of the burning houses.

Though police sources said only 20 houses built from bush materials were burnt after they were reported to be harbouring illegal miners who entered the open pit and underground mines, local MP Nixon Mangape and several local leaders said more than 200 houses, some of them permanent, were razed to the ground.

They called on Barrick and the Government to compensate the landowners immediately for this operation and the previous operations or they would take legal action.

The leaders said Wingima was a permanent settlement for the Tiene tribe, who are the landowners of the mine and not illegal miners.

Many families were displaced and lost all their properties, including eating utensils, mattresses, money, and domestic animals worth thousands of kina as their houses were burnt as early as 5am when they were sleeping.

Mr Mangape said the police did what the developer Barrick wanted them to do but it was not right as it left thousands of families, including mothers and children, homeless.

He said Barrick must relocate the special mining lease landowners immediately as burning down villages like Wingima was a short term fix that does not address the increase in illegal mining.

“This is the second time this village (Wingima) was burnt down. The first one was done during the first state of emergency call out operation some six years ago which never solved the problem,” Mr Mangape said.

“Why is Barrick not looking at long term solutions like relocating the people out of the special mining lease area? Burning houses in a particular village in the special mining lease area will not solve the illegal mining problem. It’s adding more fuel to a burning fire.”

‘Operation Mekim Save’, which began last Wednesday, is the second phase of the call-out after a month of awareness during the first phase.

Throughout the raid, security personnel confiscated a large number of hammers and dishes used by the illegal miners as well as rock dusts collected to be cleaned by mercury to remove gold.

Two people were arrested while most of the illegal miners fled into the mountain ravines, leaving genuine landowners behind.

The security forces pounded on Wingima village from three different directions.

PNG Post-Courier

35) Corruption, organised crimes rife
By Online Editor
5:16 pm GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Fiji

Fiji should be ready to counter the threats of corruption and transnational crimes from powerful organised crime groups.

UN Office on Drugs and Crime regional representative for Southeast Asia and the Pacific Jeremy Douglas said transnational crimes generated billions of money every year.

In an exclusive interview with The Fiji Times, Douglas said these organised crime groups used their money to corrupt people for the sake of their illegal dealings.

“The sheer volumes of money, on the crimes I’m mentioning (drug trafficking, counterfeit and smuggling) generate tens of billions of money a year just in East Asia alone, around the world they generate much more,” Douglas said.

“So Fiji needs to be ready for this, make sure they track the money flows and because the money generated is so big they (organised crime groups) can put it in to corrupt banking officials, finance officials and government officials.

“These groups get very powerful; they use their money to maintain their power.”

Police chief operations officer ACP Rusiate Tudravu said they were aware of this type of crime and were working closely with other international organisations and security boarders

Meanwhile, the sex trade in Fiji is bigger than what it is purported to be and Fiji plays a big role in sex trafficking local and foreign girls, says women’s rights NGO, the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre (FWCC).

Last week, the High Court in Suva convicted two men for sexual servitude crimes where they arranged clients for underage girls, this is the first time people have been convicted of slavery and domestic trafficking under the Fijian law.

FWCC co-ordinator Shamima Ali believes this case is just scratching the surface of a world that has existed in Fiji for over a decade.

“Young girls are being pimped by their parents and family members are some cases but the prevalence of organised sex trade is far greater than what people think,” said Ali.

ACP Rusiate Tudravu said all sex trafficking cases reported to the police were under investigation however, he added that if the FWCC felt differently, they were welcome to discuss their concerns with police.

“If that is a valid comment which they can substantiate through evidence or where they see incompetency of police officers, we are very open for them to come and register that with us so that we can follow because we are taking this issue very seriously,” said ACP Tudravu.
SOURCE: FIJI TIMES/PACNEWS

36) FWCC: Sex trade is much bigger in Fiji

Shalveen Chand And Tevita Vuibau
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

THE sex trade in Fiji is bigger than what it is purported to be and Fiji plays a big role in sex trafficking local and foreign girls, says women’s rights NGO, the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre.

Last week, the High Court in Suva convicted two men for sexual servitude crimes where they arranged clients for underage girls, this is the first time people have been convicted of slavery and domestic trafficking under the Fijian law.

FWCC co-ordinator Shamima Ali believes this case is just scratching the surface of a world that has existed in Fiji for over a decade.

“Young girls are being pimped by their parents and family members are some cases but the prevalence of organised sex trade is far greater than what people think,” said Ms Ali.

ACP Rusiate Tudravu said all sex trafficking cases reported to the police were under investigation however, he added that if the FWCC felt differently, they were welcome to discuss their concerns with police.

“If that is a valid comment which they can substantiate through evidence or where they see incompetency of police officers, we are very open for them to come and register that with us so that we can follow because we are taking this issue very seriously,” said ACP Tudravu.
http://www.fijitimes.com/

REFUGEE

37a) Australia pours more aid dollars into PNG’s Manus

10 June 2014
The Australian government is to fund a rebuild of Papua New Guinea’s Lorengau Police Station on Manus Island.

Australia is housing its asylum seekers on the island and the Manus camp is subject to several inquiries following unrest in February, which left one aslyum seeker dead and dozens injured.

The assistance for the PNG police is on top of additional support for improved health and education services on Manus.

The Australian government says about one thousand PNG citizens are employed at the Manus camp.Radio NZ

CLIMATE CHANGE/CONSERVATION & ENVIROMENT


37b) Drought does more damage
By Online Editor
10:12 am GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Fiji

About 60 per cent of all natural disasters that strike Pacific Island countries are climate change related.

This was revealed by UN Women Pacific representative, Cecilia Aipiri during the week-long Pacific partnerships to strengthen gender, climate change response and sustainable development workshop at the Tanoa International Hotel in Nadi.

“4 per cent of all disasters are man-made and 36 per cent is geological,” she said.

According to Aipiri, droughts affected islanders more than flooding or cyclones.

“Droughts are slow disasters and they are hard to track and not popular.

“When we talk about climate change and disaster risk management, droughts are an issue that is almost never talked about.”

She said long and short-term goals for ways in which disaster situations could be addressed needed to be implemented by governments.

“The signs of climate change are showing — slow sea level rise and change in air temperature is all tied together. The frequency of cyclones is increasing as is the intensity of hurricanes in the South Pacific.”

She said many politicians were not investing in disaster risk reduction because there was no certainty as to when a disaster could happen.

SOURCE:FIJI TIMES/PACNEWS

SPORTS

38) Athletics Fiji stunned by Ravana death, killed in USA shooting
By Online Editor
5:29 pm GMT+12, 10/06/2014, Fiji

The passing away of Fiji rep Roy Ravana Junior has shocked the entire Fijian athletics family.

Ravana Junior was killed earlier today in a shooting incident by unknown assailants.

The former Marist Brothers High School student, was a student at the IOWA Community College, in the United States.

Athletics Fiji president, Jo Rodan Senior, says they have lost one of their bright stars in the sport.

“It is a very sad day for Fiji losing one of the best sporting people in the country. So yeah he was full of energy and he had to die in such as way.”

Rodan further says the youngster was someone who had worked hard to achieve the goals he had set.

“Everybody would have felt it because the way he was a top athlete at the Marist and he had got a scholarship to go and train in the States and he was a well known person and well liked person and everyone liked him so it’s a big loss.”

Rodan adds Ravana Junior was also part of Athletics Fiji’s Commonwealth Games squad.

Ravana Junior was a Fiji rep and the former MBHS gold medalist was on a scholarship in the US, after his impressive outings locally.
SOURCE: FBC NEWS/PACNEWS

39) Aussie diva at Games

Source:
The National, Tuesday June 10th, 2014

AUSTRALIAN pop star Jessica Mauboy will perform at the PNG Games Opening Ceremony in November.
Her performance will be part of a four-day visit to Morobe that will include appearances at the Games hub and VIP areas, a performance at a fundraising event, and recording a jingle with leading PNG musician Jokema.
Since her breakthrough in 2008, Jessica Mauboy, pictured, has registered 2.1 million in sales in Australia, achieving 11 hit singles and two ARIA awards.
She also starred in the 2012 film, The Sapphires.
In May she made history at the Eurovision Song Contest by becoming the first solo artist from outside the Europe to perform.
In August she will perform during the Commonwealth Games flag handover ceremony, to mark the official handover from Glasgow (Scotland) to 2018 host city, the Gold Coast.
“It is a major coup for the PNG Games to secure an artist of the calibre of Jessica Mauboy,” chairman of the PNG Games Phil Franklin said.
“She will be the highest profile performer to visit Lae in living memory.
Her appearance at the opening ceremony will set the tone for a marvellous festival of sport, culture and entertainment.”
The sixth edition of the PNG Games will attract over 10,000 athletes from 22 provinces to participate in 28 different sports in 19 different venues.

40a) Pepes finish third in Pacific series

Source:
The National, Tuesday June 10th, 2014

THE Papua New Guinea Pepes missed out a spot at next year’s  netball world championship finishing third at the Pacific Netball Series in Cook Islands.
The unbeaten Fiji Pearls and second-placed Samoa qualified for the world meet.
The result means the national team now turns their focus on next year’s Pacific Games.
The Pacific MMI sponsored-Pepes lost to Samoa 49-39 in the second round of the competition last Thursday to extinguish any hope of a second-place finish.
The Annie Iamo-coached side beat Cook Islands 49-44 and needed an improbable win over Fiji in their last game of the tournament.
PNG stayed competitive against Fiji trailing by two in the first quarter 14-12, and being five behind, 30-25 at half time.
Shooter Tiata Baldwin and goal attack Lua Rikis made the most of their chances and along with strong efforts from  Marinama Maha and Winnie Mavara as well as defenders Susan Wellington and Kilala Owen were able to keep the score close before eventually going down 45-32.
In the other match over the weekend the Cook Islands were beaten 50-36 by Samoa ensuring PNG finished third in the four-team tournament.
The Pepes return today.

40b) Tonga ready for battle

Maciu Malo
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

THE Tongan rugby team is gearing up for another bruising and physical rugby battle against the Flying Fijians in their PNC match to be held at Lautoka’s Churchill Park on Saturday.

Head coach Mana Otai said the rugby rivalry between Fiji, Tonga and Samoa was always physical.

He said his troops were used to the physical game and would give the Fijians a taste of their own medicine.

“Physical game it’s a tradition between Tonga, Fiji and Samoa,” said Otai.

“We are known for our physical game and we definitely expect the Fijians to be physical.

“Physicality is part of our game at the same time we want to play organised rugby against the Fijians.

“The game has evolved a lot as well so we are looking to play organised rugby blended with our natural flair.”

Otai said his boys had also prepared to counter Fiji’s running rugby.

“I have seen a bit of Fiji’s game and Fijians are renowned for their running game which is why they are called the Flying Fijians.”

“We are acknowledging that at the same time we are focussing on how we are going to play.”

He said Tonga was expected to lift their performance from the Samoa game last week.

“We played our first game last week and obviously there is a lot of combination and stuff to work through.”

“We lost a lot of opportunities in that match and the biggest learning curve is to make use of our opportunities against the Fijians.

“There are no major injuries but only bruises from the Samoan game and that is what we need to expect when we playe against our Pacific brothers,” he added.

The game will kick off at 3pm.http://www.fijitimes.com/

40c) Nadal wins French Open

Afp
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

PARIS – Rafael Nadal has clinched his ninth French Open and 14th career Grand Slam title with a brutal 3-6 7-5 6-2 6-4 victory over a battling Novak Djokovic.

The world number one also became the first man to win five Roland Garros crowns in succession as the 28-year-old took his record at the tournament to 66 wins against just one defeat.

His tally of 14 majors equals the mark of Pete Sampras and puts him just three behind the all-time record of Roger Federer who is almost five years older.

Defeat was cruel for world number two Djokovic, the 2012 runner-up, who still needs a French Open title to become just the eighth man to complete the career Grand Slam.

“Every moment was crucial, all the points were so hard,” said Nadal.

“Playing against Novak is always a big challenge, I have lost to him the last four times. Every chance I have to beat him it’s because I have had to play to my limit. I feel sorry for Novak. He deserves to win this tournament one day and I am sure he will.”

He added: “It’s an amazing, emotional moment for me. I lost the Australian Open final this year when I had a problem with my back. Today tennis has given me back what happened in Australia.”

The Serb dominated the early stages of yesterday’s final, the pair’s 42nd meeting, seemingly immune to the sweltering 30-degree heat on Philippe Chatrier court.

But Nadal, playing in his 20th Grand Slam final to Djokovic’s 13th, grew stronger as the final wore on as he ended a four-match losing streak against his old rival.

The 3hr 31min duel ended on a sour note when Djokovic double-faulted on match point, shaken by a shout from the crowd.

40d) France thrashes Jamaica in final warm-up

Afp
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

LILLE, France, – Karim Benzema, Blaise Matuidi and Antoine Griezmann each scored twice as France romped to an 8-0 victory over Jamaica in their final World Cup warm-up game.

While Jamaica barely put up any serious opposition, Sunday’s result was a welcome boost for Didier Deschamps’ team two days after winger Franck Ribery withdrew with a back injury.

Real Madrid’s Benzema and Paris St Germain’s Matuidi scored a goal in each half of the festive farewell to 49,000 French fans at the Lille stadium.

Benzema had a spectacular night. His first goal was a curling shot from the corner of the penalty area. The second was also a shot from the edge of the area past hapless Jamaica goalkeeper Jacomeno Barrett. He also hit the post and made two goals.

“It was good for our confidence to score and to win,” Benzema said.

“We are doing well.”

Griezmann, one candidate to take Ribery’s place, came on as a second half substitute and scored twice in 12 minutes.

Yohan Cabaye and Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud, the other candidate to partner Benzema, scored the other goals.

Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin, called into the squad after injuries to Ribery and midfielder Clement Grenier, came on for the final three minutes to get his first cap.

France play their first World Cup game against Honduras in Group E on June 15.

40e) Seniteteva shines in Lautoka netball knockout

Maciu Malo
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

SENITETEVA was crowned the new winner of the Lautoka netball knock-out competition beating Blue Ferns 11-10 in the final.

The Nadi-based side lost to Blue Ferns in the pool games but later turned the tables against the top Lautoka side in the final to stamp their dominance in the competition.

The experience of Fiji A reps Alisi Naqiri and Kelera Nawai boosted the morale of the Seniteteva players to win the title.

The side were rock solid in defence and ruthless in attack preventing Blue Ferns from winning the competition.

Seniteteva also had the services of former Fiji secondary school rep Alisi Galo who combined well with Naqiri and Nawai to defeat the Ferns.

Defending champion KBL Shine On was bundled out in the semi-final by Blue Ferns.

Lautoka netball secretary Kinisalote Drasuna said Seniteteva would be the team to watch this season.

“They have a good bunch of young players,” she said.

“The side played magnificently throughout the competition enabling them to win their first ever Lautoka netball title.”

She said Seniteteva was the lone side from Nadi to join the 18 teams affiliated under the Lautoka netball association.Fijitimes

www.voiceofmelanesia.com

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