Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1099 ( monday 25 May 2015 )


1) Fiji PM support Indonesia’s bid to become an associate member of MSG
By Online Editor
10:13 pm GMT+12, 24/05/2015, Fiji

By Pita Ligaiula in Iwaki, Japan

Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has supported Indonesia’s bid to become an associate member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG).

In an interview with Fiji Journalists in Iwaki, Japan, Bainimarama confirmed that  having Indonesia as an associate member made sense given the population in Papua is more than 11 million Melanesian people in Indonesia.

Bainimarama said Fiji will not interfere in Indonesia’s sovereignty.

“There is a whole lot of talk about Papua but you know Papua comes under the governance of Indonesia and if you want to do anything in Papua, the best thing to do is to bring in Indonesia, no matter what, if we bring in Papua separately, it doesn’t make sense.

“Indonesia will continue to do what it wants to do. We have heard talks of assault, human rights abuses and the best thing to do is to bring in Indonesia as an associate member of the MSG,” he said.

He said the issue of alleged human rights abuse by Indonesia will best to be dealt with if Indonesia is allowed in the MSG bloc.

“There is a lot of concern about what is happening in Papua but at the end of the day, Papua comes under the sovereignty of Indonesia and the last thing we want to do is to interfere with someone else’s sovereignty. As our foreign policy says- “We are friends to all and enemies to none.”

“We don’t want to make enemies and I am sure if we talk to Indonesia about some of these allegations they will do something about it- it makes sense,” said Bainimarama.

It is expected a decision on the issue will be decided when the Melanesian Leaders will meet in Solomon Islands in July.

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill  earlier this month backed a move by Indonesia to become an associate member of the MSG.

Indonesia would be represented by the governors of its five eastern provinces with substantial Melanesian populations at meetings of the MSG.

The MSG comprises the governments of Fiji,Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and the pro-independence indigenous party representing the Melanesian Kanaks of New Caledonia.


2) PNG And Fiji’s Bilateral Relations Remain Strong
Despite tensions with Fiji PM

By Gorethy Kenneth

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, May 25, 2015) – Papua New Guinea and Fiji’s bilateral and Melanesian relationship remains strong despite differences, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill told a conference in Japan.

It is understood Fiji Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama is not in good terms with several other Pacific countries, one of which is Papua New Guinea.

Bainimarama has also refused to attend the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders’ Summit which the PNG Government will host in Port Moresby in September as he wants Australia and New Zealand cease to become full members of the regional body.

But Mr O’Neill said he was optimistic that Bainimarama will change his mind and attend this year’s Forum Leaders Meeting in Port Moresby in September.

He assured in Japan that there is no tense relationship with Fiji and that the diplomatic relations between the two major Melanesian countries remains strong.

“We all will have differences in opinion about issues, but that’s healthy. There is nothing wrong with that, we encourage people to speak their mind. But we need to work together and that is what we are encouraging.

“He is a Pacific Islander, he is entitled to change his mind just like we change our mind. But he is a member of the Forum and I’m sure Fiji will participate but we will continue to communicate with him, O’Neill said in the interview in Japan.

O’Neill in an interview confirmed he met briefly with Mr Bainimarama in Tokyo during the tea ceremony at the Japan’s Imperial Palace and ahead of the PALM Summit.

He said that to complement this relationship further the Government is in the process of appointing a new ambassador to Fiji which will be announced soon.

“We are encouraging a lot of PNG investment to invest in Fiji and Fiji investment into PNG. We will continue to engage with Fiji and I reiterate that our relations remain healthy and strong,” he said.

“We’ve welcomed him since his election as Prime Minister. We want to see greater involvement from Fiji with other Pacific Island Countries and their leaders. It is very encouraging to see him participating in this meeting,” he said.

PNG Post-Courier

3) Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 23 May 2015

by bobmakin

  • Previous Vanuatu governments must have enabled one Kevin Lai, pictured on the front page of Daily Post today, to have honorary Vanuatu citizenship, into which he slipped a year ago, and the positions of Vanuatu Permanent Representative at UN ESCAP and special envoy in Thailand. He had set up a bank in Vanuatu and was accused by the Thai police of milking VT 945 million from Thai, Chinese and Malaysian investors to his bank (with negligible website) here in Vanuatu which was ultimately to have the country’s first eight-story building block opposite the Melanesian Hotel.The bank is already in existence and is called the United Development Bank of the Pacific (UDBP). UFun management is another company with which Kevin Lai has close relations.This was used as a headquarter for Vanuatu politicians visiting Bangkok. The charges involved should be an easy matter to settle, especially since it will be done in Thailand.
  • Meantime, Daily Post today reports Police raiding a Vanuatu bookmaker with Melbourne underworld links. Offering bets on Australian racing results to Australians overseas is illegal in Australia, but that has not bothered a company called Betjack. Such companies can be fined up to AUD 340,000 a day for so operating, but this has not troubled Betjack which faces huge claims from Australian punters it ignores. There would seem to be a massive ignorance of due diligence on the part of the Australians concerned and the betting company.
  • Meanwhile the Vanuatu Ombudsman has called for the powers of his office to be be increased to investigate the judiciary. He tells Vanuatu Journalism students that there have been many cases which simply disappeared: were never finished. He also wants the definition of leadership widened to enable the Leadership Code to investigate all senior public servants and political appointees, Post reports today.
  • The Independent reveals Asco Motors has recalled some 29 vehicles fitted with the faulty airbags which have caused 63 million cars worldwide to be recalled.


4) Tonga Takes Tangible Steps In Fight Against Corruption
Launches local chapter of global anti-corruption org

SAIPAN, CNMI (Marianas Variety, May 25, 2015) – Members of the Parliament of Tonga took a great step forward in the fight against corruption in this Pacific Island nation by launching a local chapter of the Global Organization of Parliamentarians Against Corruption or GOPAC and later unanimously voting in Parliament to create a Standing Committee on Anti-Corruption.

Once operational, the Standing Committee is expected to press for the signing of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption or UNCAC. Also among anticipated committee activities is the creation and appointment of the country’s first anti-corruption commission and an anti-corruption commissioner.

Facilitated by GOPAC, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime or UNODC and U.N. Development Program or UNDP and supported by the speaker of the Legislative Assembly, the workshop saw MPs explore the benefits of establishing a GOPAC chapter and the benefits of signing on to the UNCAC. MPs also engaged in South-South information sharing while learning about the anti-corruption experiences of the Cook Islands from local MP Nandi Glassie.

Legislative Speaker Lord Tu’ivakano commented that as lawmakers, “MPs must recognize the importance of combatting corruption. Our support towards the enactment of good governance legislation aimed at fighting corruption is a priority and as such would be instrumental in stamping out corrupt practices and upholding the rule of law that should underpin our democratic society.”

The workshop was also attended by the prime minister of Tonga, ‘Akilisi Pohiva, who told MPs that more attention needs to be paid to ensuring the public understands the impact that corruption has on the nation and supports counter measures.

Annika Wythes, UNODC’s regional anti-corruption advisor-Pacific, and Isikeli Valemei, UNDP’s governance associate, led discussions on using UNCAC as a framework for tackling corruption. UNDP and UNODC, with funding from the Australian government, are working together to combat corruption as part of the U.N. Pacific Regional Anti-Corruption Project.

“By helping MPs better understand the benefits of countries signing the UNCAC, we also demonstrated the support and guidance that Tonga would receive from the international community particularly other Small Island Nation States that have also signed and ratified UNCAC,” said Wythes.

John Hyde, chair of GOPAC Oceania and a GOPAC International Board Member, in partnership with Cook Islands MP and anti-corruption champion MP Glassie, introduced MPs to the benefits of GOPAC.

With the creation of a local chapter, “Tonga now joins GOPAC national chapters in Cook Islands, Kiribati, Australia and New Zealand and as regional MPs assert their key role as advocates against corruption, which robs communities of sustainable development,” said Hyde.

The workshop was facilitated by the UNDP Tonga Governance Strengthening Program. Douglas Armour, the program manager, commented that the workshop was “an opportunity to galvanize MPs around corruption and help members collectively understand that tackling corruption has clear and tangible benefits for the country.”

Marianas Variety

5) Former Samoa minister left to pay compensation

25 May 2015

A prominent Samoan accountant and auditor who is a former government minister, Matatauali’itia Afa Lesa, is to pay a family compensation of 350,000 US dollar after the court declared eight other defendants in the case bankrupt.

The eight people, including several village matais of Tanugamanono village, have recently been released from jail.

They were jailed earlier this month when they failed to make their due payments on time.

Matatauali’itia was among nine residents from the same village who were ordered by the court to pay the compensation in monthly payments.

The family of Faumuina Tutuila, who is banished from the village, had been awarded the compensation after destruction of property as a result of a land dispute with members of the Congregational Christian Church of Tanugamanono.

The chief executive of the Ministry of Justice, Masinalupe Tusipa Masinalupe, says it’s easy for prominent figures to apply for a declaration of bankruptcy.

But he says a new amendment of the law requires a government assignee to investigate the honesty of such a declaration.RNZI

6) French Polynesia Nuclear Victims Dubious About Commission

Testing victims skeptical of need for more hearings

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, May 25, 2015) – The head of an organisation representing victims of nuclear testing in French Polynesia says a commission set up to assess the aftermath of the testing could just be a charade.

It was set up by France’s defence minister, and will be made up of 24 members and chaired by the French High Commissioner in Papeete.

The director of Moruroa e Tatou, which represents victims of testing on the atolls of Mururoa and Fangataufa, says 80-percent of the members suffer serious health conditions, including cancer.

Roland Oldham is questioning why more more evidence is needed.

“Why more more and more commissions…isn’t there enough proof now that it had a bad impact on the environment, and a bad impact on the health of polynesian people – itsn’t it enough proof?”

He says they will make themselves heard.

“As far as we’re concerned, we will be speaking with a very loud voice, because we have had enough of all these lies, of 40 years of lying, and if this commission’s just for another lie, then it’s just a waste of money and a waste of time.”

Mr Oldham says the first meeting will be held in two days.

Radio New Zealand International

7) Call For French/Pacific Climate Change Summit In Paris
By New Caledonia politician and member of the French senate

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, May 22, 2015) – A leading New Caledonian politician has called on France to host another summit with the leaders of Pacific Island countries to highlight the challenges created by climate change.

Philippe Gomes, who is also a member of the French Senate, has written to the French president, Francois Hollande, suggesting such a summit could be held as part of the COP 21 meeting in Paris in December.

Mr Gomes says no region could show better than the Pacific what humankind has to face up to, adding that is happening in the Pacific now will occur in other parts of the world in 20 to 50 years.

Although the Pacific contributes only 0,03 percent of global emissions, climate change affects it most.

Last month, a group of 15 Pacific countries and territories met in New Caledonia and called on the international community to launch a revolution to deal with climate change at the COP 21 conference.

France has hosted three summits with Pacific leaders – two were chaired by President Jacques Chirac and the last one, in 2009, by the then foreign minister, Bernard Kouchner.

Radio New Zealand International


8) Marshalls woman gets posthumous honour in Taiwan

25 May 2015

A Marshallese woman who died fighting for justice for the survivors of United States nuclear weapons tests on her country’s islands is being honoured in Taiwan this week with the Global Love of Lives award from a Taipei non-profit foundation.

Darlene Keju, who exposed a United States cover up of nuclear test-caused health problems in her islands, also formed the internationally recognised non-profit group Youth to Youth in Health in the Marshall Islands.

She died nineteen years ago from cancer and is the only Pacific islander in the group that is being to honoured.

The Chou Ta-Kuan Educational and Cultural Foundation is honoring 19 people from around the world in an annual ceremony launched 18 years ago following the death of the foundation’s namesake, a Taiwanese boy who died at 10 from cancer.

The other winners of the foundation’s award this year are from South Korea, Norway, Turkey, Ecuador, China, Belgium, Japan, Germany and Taiwan.

They are active in a range of peace, climate, education, health, human rights, and artistic projects.

The group will officially receive their awards on Thursday in Kaohsiung.

The 19 recipients were chosen from over 2,000 applicants from around the world. During their visit to Taiwan this week, they will share their stories with high school students, meet with President Ma Ying-Jeou and the mayors of New Taipei City and Taichung City, and visit with children in local hospitals to share messages of hope.

Darlene Keju will being represented in Taiwan this week by Marshall Islands Journal newspaper editor Giff Johnson, her husband of 14 years, and his wife Mathilda R. Johnson.

The Chou Ta-Kuan Foundation described Keju as “the Environmental Godmother” of the Marshall Islands who revealed the story of the 67 U.S. nuclear weapons tests at Bikini and Enewetak to protect the safety and health of Marshall Islanders.

Despite Keju’s death in 1996, the youth health organization she established continues providing Marshall Islanders with healthcare services and youth leadership training programs.

Giff Johnson published a biography about Keju in 2013 titled, “Don’t Ever Whisper — Darlene Keju: Pacific Health Pioneer, Champion for Nuclear Survivors.”RNZI

9) CNMI: Farmers Can Get Typhoon Help From USDA
Four programs that could be of service

SAIPAN, CNMI (Saipan Tribune, May 25, 2015) – Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan says that farmers and ranchers who suffered losses from Typhoon Dolphin can look to the U.S. Department of Agriculture for help with recovery.

“There are four programs Congress has authorized and USDA runs that can be of immediate assistance to farmers and ranchers,” Sablan said. “Information is available online or by contacting Mr. Thomas Camacho at the Farm Service Agency, at 670-234-0896 or”

The four programs producers are encouraged to check are:

Non-Insured Crop Disaster Assistance. Helps to offset production losses for producers, who were signed up in advance, and was part of the Agricultural Act of 2014, written while Sablan was a member of the House Agriculture Committee. (

Tree Assistance Program. Makes funding available to growers of papaya, banana, and other tropical fruit to clean up their orchards and replant. The 2014 Agricultural Act made TAP a permanent disaster program. (

Livestock Indemnity Program. Offsets losses of cattle, pigs, and poultry due to adverse weather by providing 75 percent of the value of the livestock. This program was also authorized by the Agricultural Act of 2014. (

Farm Loan Program. Offers a range of low-interest loans to help agricultural producers recover from storm damage. Producers with existing loans should also contact their Farm Services Agency loan officer, if they expect they will have trouble making their regular loan payments because of the storm. (

Sablan also reported that the Farm Services Agency has been on the ground on Rota, making site visits to individual farms and inspecting the damage. FSA officials are expected to be on Saipan next week.

“USDA, FEMA, and other agencies have moved quickly to help the Northern Mariana Islands pick up the pieces after Typhoon Dolphin,” Sablan said. “It is good to know the federal government is there when we need it.”

Saipan Tribune

10) UN Calls For Nauru To Withdraw Recent Amendments

Related to freedom of expression

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, May 23, 2015) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression has called on Nauru’s government to withdraw recent amendments to the criminal code which he says unduly restrict freedom of expression.

In a statement, David Kaye also urged authorities to revoke other measures that restrain access to internet and social media and curtail the freedom of the press.

He says the amendment, passed last month, is ambiguous and imposes harsh penalties for a wide range of legitimate expression.

Nauru’s government says its internet restrictions, which includes blocking Facebook, is to limit pornography, crime and cyberbullying.

But Mr Kaye says he’s concerned that the restrictions are instead designed to prevent asylum seekers and refugees on the island from sharing information about their situation.

He says freedom of the press is also limited by prohibitive visa fees for foreign journalists, which he says is problematic in a small country with limited media.

Earlier this month, the UN Subcommittee on the Prevention of Torture visited Nauru to focus on the situation of people being detained on the island and the need to establish an independent monitoring body for places of detention.

Radio New Zealand International

11) US: Return Money After Failed Marshalls School Project
Documentation didn’t actually authorize land use

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, May 25, 2015) – The United States has demanded that the Marshall Islands pay back 800,000 US dollars given to it to build a school that the government now says can’t go ahead.

The money was given under the Compact of Free Association after the government said landowners had approved construction of the school on Majuro.

It was then spent on design work, but last month, the US was told that the school couldn’t go ahead because the documentation didn’t actually give authority for land use.

Our correspondent, Giff Johnson, says Washington is now saying that if the money isn’t paid back by July, it may withhold other payments.

“There’s monthly grants, and [the] infrastructure grant annually is around 12 million dollars, so clearly it could be deducted from a future payment.”

Giff Johnson says the Marshall Islands is disputing this, saying there was no intent to do anything improper and that there are still plans to build the school elsewhere.

Radio New Zealand International


12) O’Neill: Diplomatic row sorted

The National, Monday May 25th, 2015

PRIME Minister Peter O’Neill says a “misunderstanding” had caused the row with Australia over its proposal to set up a diplomatic post on Bougainville.
O’Neill met Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop in Japan where they attended the Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting and said the matter was being resolved.
“It was a misunderstanding that has been acknowledged and we will work it through,” he said.
O’Neill was furious when Australia revealed its plan in its recent budget presentation without consulting Port Moresby.
The Government in retaliation last week restricted Australians from travelling to Bougainville.
Meanwhile, O’Neill warned that Papua New Guinea could not resettle refugees indefinitely, and called on Australia and other countries to address the humanitarian crisis in Myanmar.
He told the Sydney Morning Herald at the Pacific Leaders Meeting in Japan that “we must get the leadership of Myanmar to account” over its treatment of the minority Rohingyas, who form a substantial part of the current Asian migration crisis.
PNG had signed an agreement with Australia to use Manus Island as a regional processing centre for asylum seekers.
O’Neill called on Australia to increase its own humanitarian intake to help tackle the soaring movement of people around the world fleeing persecution and conflict.
“Leaders in those countries need to be told that people in your community are not being looked after well and we need to work together in addressing that. Countries like Australia and the United States, the UK, and other developed countries like Japan must assist in addressing this crisis,” he said.
Speaking before O’Neill’s comments,  Bishop told Fairfax Media that Australia had “no plans” to take any of the Rohingyas beyond the current refugee intake.

13) Aus Offers $35M For Vanuatu’s Recovery From Cyclone

Extra assistance supplements initial commitments

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, May 23, 2015) – The Australian Government has committed an extra $35 million of aid to help with the cyclone recovery effort in Vanuatu.

Infrastructure in the country was badly damaged by Cyclone Pam, which killed at least 11 people when it crossed the country’s islands in March.

It damaged houses, health centres and schools and has resulted in losses in the country’s tourism and agricultural sectors.

Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop said in a statement the latest funding was a long-term recovery package, developed in consultation with Vanuatu’s government.

She said it will help to support livelihoods, economic recovery and the private sector, and repair and rebuild critical public infrastructure.

The funding would also restore health and education facilities, and support gender and disability inclusion, the statement said.

A spokesman for global charity Save the Children, Mat Tinkler, said the extra money would help local communities to rebuild.

“The Australian Government had committed around $15 million to date and they’ve committed an additional $35 million now, so that brings to a total of $50 million which is a substantial amount, and much-needed for the people of Vanuatu to rebuild,” he said.

“This money will go a long way to help rebuild some of that critical infrastructure, schools, roads, help get people’s lives and businesses back on track to allow them to plant new crops, and also help support really important services like health facilities for people.”

The Government said the economic impact of Cyclone Pam has been calculated as equivalent to 64 per cent of GDP.

Vanuatu will need the ongoing assistance of its friends and partners to support its long-term recovery, the Government said.

Radio Australia


14) Torosel populesen i go antap long Arnavon long Solomon Islands

Postim 25 May 2015, 16:33 AEST
Sam Seke
Long naba 23 long dispela munem ibin World Turtle Day oa dei blong makim torosel olsem yumi kolim long Papua New Guinea oa totel yumi kolim long Vanuatu na Solomon Islands.

Na blong makim dispela de, Solomon Islands igat gutpela nius long tokim world long sait long torosel conservation wok long Arnavon Islands.

The Nature Conservancy Solomon Islands we i go pas long dispela wok i ripotim 200 percent increase long naba blong dispela endangered kain torosel ol i kolim hawksbill turtle.

Arnavon em i wanpela grup blong 4 pela liklik ailan long Manning Strait, we i namel long Isabel na Choiseul province we ol torosel i save go leim egg longen.

Direkta blong The Nature Conservancy Solomon Islands, Wllie Atu i tok inkris blong hawksbill turtle long Arnavon em i risalt blong conservation wok ol ibin karim at insat 20 pela yia.

Tasol Mr Atu i tok nabawan wari ol i lukim long populesen blong hawksbill torosel nau em i sait long climate change we i bagarapim ol nambis we ol i save go karim kiau longen.ABC

15) Ol PNG NGO i laikim moa toktok long Climate Change Bill

Postim 25 May 2015, 16:27 AEST
Sam Seke

Sampela NGO long Papua New Guinea i tokaut strong agensim wei gavman i lait hariap tru wantaim dispela Climate Change (Mitigation) Bill blong kantri.

Long wanpela pas we ol ibin salim go long Praim Minista O’Neill, ol i tok ol i kirap nogut tru long hau gavman i wok long kirapim dispela Bill em i laik kamapim olsem loa.

Thomas Paka, executive director blong PNG Eco-Forestry Forum i tok planti samting insait long draft Climate Change Bill ia ino stret oa ino klia.

Em i tok, wanpela long ol em long sait long husat nau bai stap insait long Climate Change board aninit long dispela loa…we nau ia i nogat wanpela long Civil society or NGO.

Mr Paka i tok i moabeta gavman i putim dispela Bill igo bek long ol pablik iken toktok longen, pastaim long ol i putim go long palamen olsem wanpela bill.ABC

16) PNG NPF Bosman bifo i gilty long korapsan

Updated 22 May 2015, 14:16 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Jimmy Maladina  siaman bifo blong National Provident Fund (NPF) ibin rong tru oa guilty long stilim  K2.65 million wanpla ten seven yia igo pinis.

Aste National kot long Papua New Guinea i painim Jimmy Maladina  siaman bifo blong National Provident Fund (NPF) ibin rong tru oa guilty long stilim  K2.65 million wanpla ten seven yia igo pinis.

National Provindent Fund, emi wanpla laen oa organisation  we ol wokman-meri long private sekta isave putim moni blong ol blong taem oli lusim wok oa retire.

Taem emi bin tokaut olsem Mr Maladina i bin rong long iusim despla bikpla moni, Deputy Chief Justice Sir Gibbs Salika ibin tok makim despla pasin blong en olsem wanpla kaen pasin nogut oa  “money laundering” na emi bikpla giaman pasin oa “dishonest”.

Mr Maladina nau i kamap olsem wanpla narapla lida long kantri em kot i painim em i rong long mekim ol korap pasin, wankaen olsem planti Palaman memba, em sampla long ol istap nau long kalabus long pasin korapsan.

ABC niusman long Port Moresby Wesley Manuai iwok long bihaenim despla stori long planti wik nau na emi tokim Radio Australia olsem kot i painim emi rong oa guilty long tupla samting.

Tasol  deputi lida blong oposisan husat isave toktok tumas long despla wari blong korapsan na ol lida blong kantri, Mr Sam Basil itok emi hamamas olsem Mr maladina nau bai kisim mekimsave long despla pasin emi bin mekim, Mr Basil itok tu olsem ol narapla lida blong kantri tu ibin stap insaet long despla wari blong Natrional provindent fund.ABC

17) PNG i mas kamapim strongpla loa egensim sorcery killing

Postim 22 May 2015, 14:07 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Papua New Guinea gavman imas kamapim loa egensim sorcery killing long kantri.

Acting Polis Komanda long Wabag districk blong Enga provins Epenes Nili i mekim despla toktok tede bihaenim ol ripot olsem sampla man i kilim wanpla mama em polis na ol missionari ibin sevim laif blong en long mun January.

Oli bin sutim tok long despla mama na tripla narapla mama olsem oli bin iusim posin bihaen long sampla pipal ibin dai long sik measles long wanpla ples long bikbus blong Enga provins long 2014.

Oli tok nem blong despla meri em oli kilim long Mande em Misila na oli wari tu long ol pikinini blong en, nogut bai oli kilim ol tu.

Mr Epenes Nili ibin go pas long ol polis na misinari long savim ol despla mama long stat blong despla yia.ABC


18a) Brèves du Pacifique – lundi 25 mai 2015

Mis à jour 25 May 2015, 16:28 AEST

Élodie Largenton

En Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée, une femme accusée de sorcellerie a été tuée par un groupe d’hommes dans la province d’Enga, dans la région des Hautes-Terres. 

Cette femme, Misila, avait été secourue par des missionnaires et des chefs coutumiers, en janvier dernier. Avec deux autres villageoises, elle était accusée d’être responsable d’une épidémie de rougeole, qui avait causé plusieurs décès, l’année dernière. Une fois sauvées, les femmes ont fui leur village, mais Misila avait décidé de retourner vivre chez elle. L’un des missionnaires qui était intervenu en sa faveur, Anton Lutz, dit que ses enfants sont en danger, aujourd’hui.
Le Japon va donner près de 580 millions de dollars aux îles du Pacifique pour les aider à lutter contre le changement climatique et les catastrophes naturelles. Une somme promise par le Premier ministre, Shinzo Abe, au cours d’un sommet de deux jours, qui a réuni les représentants de 14 pays de la région dans la province de Fukushima. Des hauts fonctionnaires d’Australie, de Nouvelle-Zélande et des États-Unis étaient également présents. En organisant ce genre de rencontres, le Japon cherche aussi à renforcer sa visibilité dans le Pacifique, alors que la Chine étend son influence économique et politique.
Il n’y aura pas de référendum sur le mariage homosexuel en Australie. Le Premier ministre conservateur ne veut pas que son pays suive l’exemple de l’Irlande, qui vient de légaliser le mariage gay par référendum. Pour Tony Abbott, c’est le Parlement qui se prononcera, éventuellement, sur le sujet. En Australie, les référendums portent sur des questions qui entraînent un changement constitutionnel, a-t-il précisé.
Épilogue heureux, en Australie, pour un petit garçon de 10 ans menacé d’expulsion parce qu’il est autiste. Tyrone pourra finalement rester dans le Queensland avec sa mère, une infirmière philippine. Le ministre de l’Immigration, Peter Dutton, est intervenu en sa faveur après la médiatisation de l’affaire. Plus de 120 000 personnes avaient signé une pétition demandant aux autorités de ne pas expulser Tyrone, bien que la justice ait estimé que sa maladie représentait un « trop grand coût pour les contribuables ».
L’Australie a terminé 5e du concours de l’Eurovision, avec la chanson « Tonight Again » de Guy Sebastian. À l’occasion des 60 ans de ce concert géant, les Européens avaient en effet décidé d’inviter exceptionnellement la lointaine Australie. Il faut dire que les Australiens sont parmi les plus grands fans du concours. Des centaines de personnes se sont ainsi rassemblées pour voir la finale en direct, dimanche à 5h du matin. ABC

L’Australie renforce son aide en faveur du Vanuatu

Mis à jour 25 May 2015, 16:34 AEST

Élodie Largenton

35 millions de dollars : c’est la nouvelle somme promise par l’Australie au Vanuatu pour l’aider à faire face aux conséquences du cyclone Pam.
Onze personnes ont été tuées, des dizaines d’autres blessées, et les infrastructures de l’archipel ont été sévèrement endommagées par le passage de ce cyclone de catégorie 5, en mars dernier. Des maisons, des écoles, des centres de santé ont détruits. Les secteurs clés de l’économie du pays que sont l’agriculture et le tourisme souffrent toujours des conséquences de ces destructions.
Après avoir donné 15 millions de dollars au lendemain de la catastrophe, l’Australie veut aujourd’hui aider le Vanuatu à se reconstruire sur le long terme. Dans un communiqué, la ministre australienne des Affaires étrangères précise que le nouveau plan de financement de 35 millions de dollars a été établi avec les autorités vanuataises. Il doit permettre au secteur privé de se relever, assurer à la population des moyens de subsistance, et financer la reconstruction des bâtiments publics endommagés.
Ce don est accueilli avec soulagement par Rebecca Barber, de l’ONG Save the children :
« Cette contribution est vraiment la bienvenue. Je pense que ça va faire la différence. L’Australie a déjà fait un don généreux, mais la contribution de la communauté internationale n’a pas été énorme. 38 millions de dollars ont été demandés lors de l’appel à l’aide d’urgence, mais on a réuni que la moitié de la somme, et en général, il est encore plus difficile d’obtenir des fonds pour la reconstruction que pour l’aide d’urgence, donc je pense que l’aide australienne va faire une énorme différence. »
Le gouvernement du Vanuatua a fait ses calculs, et estime que l’impact du cyclone Pam sur l’économie du pays équivaut à une perte de 64% de PIB. L’archipel a besoin de ses amis et partenaires pour le soutenir, ont déclaré les autorités à plusieurs reprises.
Rebecca Barber confirme que malgré les efforts déployés par la population, le Vanuatu a besoin d’aide extérieure :
« Les efforts de reconstruction réalisés par les communautés sont impressionnants. Une étude récente a montré que 85% des gens ont complètement fini de replanter leurs fruits et légumes de subsistance, environ 70% des gens ont déjà fait les réparations dans leurs maisons, donc les gens ont très rapidement fait des efforts considérables pour se relever après le passage du cyclone. Mais malgré cela, il faut de l’aide pour la reconstruction de l’économie à un plus large niveau, pour les infrastructures, notamment. »
De nombreuses routes et écoles ont en effet besoin d’être reconstruites. L’ONG Save the children espère que le nouveau don de l’Australie incitera d’autres pays à en faire de même.ABC


19) PNG call for inclusive trading at APEC 2015

25 May 2015

Papua New Guinea is calling on APEC countries to be more inclusive of smaller nations in their trading strategy and policy.

The PNG Minister for National Planning and Monitoring, Charles Abel, made the call at the APEC 2015 meeting in the Philippines on Opening New Market Frontiers for Small Firms.

Mr Abel says as the smallest APEC country Papua New Guinea is wary of trading its natural resources to larger countries or corporations which have no interest in the long-term development of PNG.

” Countries like Papua New Guinea that are resource rich. We have got to make sure that these rules allow us to develop a sustainable, inclusive, meaningful, long-term economic foundations. Not find ourselves with a, at the end of the day with a large population and essentially our assets stripped. And then try and then repair the damage after the fact.”

PNG National Planning and Monitoring Minister Charles Abel

The 2015 APEC meeting in the Philippines aims to open up cross-border opportunities for small firms within Pacific Rim economies.RNZI

20) Japan To Give $578 million To Pacific For Climate Change
Japan recognizes Niue as a sovereign state

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, May 23, 2015) – Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe has pledged $578 million in aid to Pacific island nations to help them combat climate change and natural disasters.

Mr Abe made the pledge as leaders of 14 Pacific island nations gathered for a two-day meeting, which began on Friday in Iwaki, Fukushima prefecture, to discuss their development needs.

“As a pledge of the Japanese government, we will provide no less than 55 billion yen ($578 million) to you in the upcoming three years … in order to foster resilient capabilities that will not be defeated by climate change or disasters,” he told the meeting.

The seventh round of Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM) came as host Japan attempts to boost its profile in the Pacific, at a time of growing Chinese economic and political influence in the region.

The meeting, held every three years, was also attended by senior officials from Australia, New Zealand and the United States.

Pacific concerned about extreme climate events

Pacific island leaders have long complained about rising sea levels eroding their coastlines and of the increasing severity and frequency of extreme climate phenomena, such as super typhoons, likely caused by global warming.

They have pushed developed nations — responsible for the much of the emissions associated with global warming — to extend help to cope with damage brought by harsh climate patterns.

Most recently, in March, Vanuatu was hit by Severe Tropical Cyclone Pam, which killed 11 people when sustained winds of more than 250 kilometres per hour tore through the country, affecting about 166,600 inhabitants.

Japan recognises Nieu as sovereign state

In the previous PALM round in 2012, Japan pledged up to $500 million over three years to members, focused on damage mitigation efforts.

Japan decided to host this year’s conference in Iwaki, southern Fukushima, to highlight the devastation wrought by a magnitude-9.0 earthquake and tsunami in 2011, and the region’s subsequent reconstruction.

The city is far enough from the crippled Fukushima nuclear reactors not to expose the guests to dangerous levels of radiation, but it still serves as a grim reminder of the world’s worst atomic accident in a generation.

Ahead of the conference, Japan recognised as a sovereign state the tiny island nation of Niue, home to 1,611 inhabitants, and perched some 2,400 kilometres north-east of New Zealand.

Radio Australia


21) Millions without access to doctor in PNG

25 May 2015

A health group in PNG says more than three million Papua New Guineans do not have access to a doctor.

The President of the PNG Society for Rural and Remote Health told the Post Courier only 39 of the 88 districts have a doctor.

David Mills says the number could be even bleaker with a recent survey showing some of the districts marked ‘doctor present” only had one in the capital or main centre.

Dr Mills says the current population in PNG without a doctor in their district full time is at least 3.2 million.

However he says if you really look harder at it, and go down to local level governments and see where the doctors are, you will be looking at more than five million people without access

Dr Mills says the implications of the statistics are many and include PNG continuing to have high maternal and child mortality rates and a large number of people dying from preventable diseases such as pneumonia, tuberculosis and malaria.

A large number of missionary doctors left after independence and were never replaced, resulting in the closure of some facilities.RNZI

22) Teen pregnancy a concern

The National, Monday May 25th, 2015

THREE organisations have delivered information on family planning to settlements in Morata, Joyce Bay and 5-Mile in Port Moresby.
They are the Safe Motherhood Alliance PNG, WeCare Foundation and Marie Stopes PNG.
Under the “Blooming Teens Project”, they talked about teenage pregnancy, emphasising the need for quality sexual and reproductive health services to be provided in a youth-friendly manner.
Safe Motherhood Alliance president Colleen Westaway said many young women became mothers early, depriving them of completing their education and putting pressure on them to find money to pay for their family’s needs.
WeCare Foundation programme manager Josephine Dromenge said: “We see so many children in the communities we work with. Many families need to plan their families so we are thankful to Marie Stopes PNG for coming in to provide this service.”


23) Students learn about Vision 2050

The National, Monday May 25th, 2015

MEMBERS of the school-based Youths Against Corruption Association have discussed how they can help in achieving Vision 2050.
The forum coordinated by Transparency International PNG was held at the Don Bosco Technical Institute in Port Moresby.
Programme coordinator Arianne Kassman said many youths were not well informed about what was in the Government’s Vision 2050 policy. It is a road map for development expected to be fulfilled by the year 2050.
“It is important that youths talk about it and get familarised. This is our future and we should play an active role,” Kassman said.
Participants came from seven schools.
Sogeri National High School Youth Against Corruption Association president Joachim Mon said students would end up in the work force to implement the policy.

“By knowing Vision 2050 well, we can make effective changes,” Mon said.

24) UniFiji has new vice chancellor

Monday, May 25, 2015

Update: 4:00PM UNIVERSITY of Fiji in Lautoka has appointed a new Vice Chancellor from Georgetown, Guyana.

Taking up the role is former University of Guyana pro-chancellor, Professor Premnarine Misir.

In making the announcement, UniFiji pro-chancellor Anil Tikaram said Professor Misir holds a PhD in Social and Behavioral Science, Master of Public Health, Master of Philosophy (Sociology) and a Bachelor of Social Science in Economics and Sociology.Fijitimes


25) Sorting of ballot papers starts

Monday, May 25, 2015

BUKA – The process of sorting ballot papers has begun as Bougainville nears the end of its two-week election process.

The official voting period ends on Monday, but many of the autonomous Papua New Guinea region’s 33 constituencies have already finished voting.

The acting electoral commissioner, George Manu, says ballot papers will begin to be sorted by region and constituency from today ready for counting next week.

Mr Manu says the process will be observed by international and domestic observers, as well as scrutinisers representing each candidate, and the ballot boxes will be transported under police escort.

Mr Manu says the election, the first run by Bougainvilleans themselves, has gone smoothly, and he is happy with progress despite some complaints of interference and double voting.

26) Polye: I have numbers to press no-confidence vote
By Online Editor
6:29 pm GMT+12, 24/05/2015, Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea Opposition Leader Don Polye is very confident of toppling the current government.

In a media conference  Polye said he had the numbers to go with a vote of no confidence during this Parliament’s session.

The Opposition officially has six members of parliament signed up, however Mr Polye needs 21 signatures to get his motion tabled.

He did not say where the extra 15 votes would come from.

He said symptoms of corrupt dealings had been showing with the current government and he was ready and confident to make a move to topple the government.

“The current government has been misusing people’s funds and enough is enough,”’ he told reporters.

Parliament will resume on Tuesday.


27) Solomon Islands PM denies reports of coalition pressure

25 May 2015

The Solomon Islands Prime Minister, Manasseh Sogavare, is denying reports that he’s under pressure to remove members of the Kandere Party from his Democratic Coalition for Change Government.

A statement from the Prime Minister’s Office says Mr Sogavare has never been under pressure and that reports are nothing but rumours.

The statement adds the Kandere Party, as well as the United Democratic Party and the People’s Alliance Party, are committed to the coalition government.

The Kandare Party won one seat in recent elections, but that increased to 12 after independent MPs registered joined it in the lead up lobbying that resulted in the formation of the current coalition.RNZI

28) Suspension Of Fiji Opposition MP Labelled A “Joke”

Suspect ulterior motives given first time offense

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, May 25, 2015) – A spokesperson for Fiji’s opposition says the two year suspension handed down to one of its MPs last week is a joke, and court action is possible.

The Sodelpa MP, Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu, was last week suspended from parliament for two years over a slur he made about the speaker during a meeting outside parliament.

An opposition spokesperson, Mick Beddoes, says the supension is extremely heavy-handed, especially considering first-time offences in other countries usually result in a suspension of only a few days.

He says the opposition boycotted Parliament on Friday, and will announce what further action it will take in the next few days.

Mr Beddoes says he suspects sinister motives are behind the suspension, as Ratu Naiqama’s absence means one less vote for the opposition.

“It’s a suspension for two years, so therefore we’re sitting in that house with a vacant seat for two years. He’s not there for two years, we have one less member for two years, which again, it’s pretty excessive.”

Mick Beddoes.

Radio New Zealand International


29) ANZ welcomes Asia’s Pacific Islands push
By Online Editor
6:57 pm GMT+12, 24/05/2015, Fiji

Asian and particularly Chinese companies are fast moving into the Pacific Islands, and ANZ is pursuing their business through an innovative corporate play.

The bank is gaining a foothold as a financial partner of a number of China’s biggest state-owned companies by demonstrating its capacity to help them in island countries where ANZ has been ­established for a century or so.

Vishnu Mohan, ANZ’s Pacific chief executive, has established an Asian Business Centre in Suva, Fiji, where he is based, as a formal focus for this growing role.

Now it has been operating for almost 18 months,  Mohan told The Australian the bank had also assigned staff to pursue this role in Papua New Guinea, although as yet there was no formal centre. “The reason we set up the centre, is that as a super-regional bank which follows trade and investment paths, we identified this as a new need,” he said.

The initial focus of this wave of Asian companies has been on ­infrastructure and resources, but it is starting to diversify.

Mohan said China’s trade with the Pacific had been growing rapidly — by 25 per cent a year for the past five years.

Ten years ago it was about $1 billion, now it is $4.5bn (US$4 billion).

He said “most of our customers at the Asia Centre saw us as their logical starting point because we were also present at the other end, in their home city in Asia” — whether in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia or China.

Mohan made several visits to China and other Asian countries for two years, talking with companies starting to operate in the region and establishing a rapport — working closely with the Chinese embassy in Fiji.

The centre is staffed by bankers who speak Mandarin and other Asian languages, and Mohan said “we have also beefed up our teams in Samoa, Vanuatu and Timor-Leste, which are also starting to attract Asian and especially Chinese interest”. The centre has account opening forms in Chinese and uses a global transactions system drafted in Chinese.

ANZ has trained staff in Beijing and Shanghai to help with these transactions, and they have built a database on companies doing business in the islands, and make customer calls in China.

Mohan, originally from Sri Lanka, worked in Africa for seven years, where he became familiar with the needs and challenges of Chinese businesses operating in different cultures far from base.

He was also chief executive in PNG, the biggest islands market for Chinese companies.



30) Japan to build Port Vila port terminal

25 May 2015

A contract has been signed to build Vanuatu’s first multi-purpose port terminal in the capital, Port Vila.

Vanuatu’s Minister of Infrastructure and Public Utilities, Esmon Sae, signed the agreement with Japanese construction company TOA Corporation.

Our correspondent says once completed, the new wharf is going to provide for all international cargo vessels to be handled away from the main wharf and where tourist liners anchor.

Mr Sae says the Japanese company is expected to complete the Lapetasi Wharf Project within a two-year time frame and a budget of $US 46.7 million.

TOA Corporation representative Nakamura San says this is their second project in Vanuatu, they completed Lenakel Wharf in Tanna several years ago.

He says TOA Corporation won the bid for the project out of 16 international bidders.

The project is funded by Japan through the Japan International Corporation Agency.RNZI

31) Delicacies of Suva market

With Chef Lance Seeto
Sunday, May 24, 2015

Fiji’s biggest open-air market has undergone renovations and expansion recently, providing even more fresh foods direct from the farms, rivers and oceans. In tonight’s episode, Chef Seeto discovers that market vendors are quickly adapting to the growing needs of a busy metropolis.

There’s a good reason why Fiji’s open-air markets feature so heavily in this season of Taste of Paradise and it’s not just for the fresh produce.

From Lautoka, to Nadi and Suva, the municipal markets are like nature’s pharmacy of preventative medicine foods. The fresh local foods may not cure disease, but they are certainly designed to help prevent many of the non-communicable disease we now see in Fiji.

If the outdoor markets are the people’s direct link to their ancestral Pacific diet, then the hard working vendors and stallholders are Mother Nature’s matanivanua or spokespeople.

Every day they offer the medicine foods of fresh produce from the soil, virgin coconut oil from the Tree of Life, protein and minerals from the sea and rivers, and healing spices from the land.

Without the large city markets and roadside stalls constantly reminding us of the optimum Pacific island diet of eating directly from the land and sea, many more Fijians would be sick today.

The market gardens are also a legacy of humankind’s development of agriculture more than 12,000 years ago.

The transition from a hunter-gatherer subsistence to an agricultural society was borne out of our ancestor’s need to grow and store food and nutrition closer to home.

Why walk so far to find something to eat when you can grow it at home?

Much of rural Fiji is still able to enjoy this way of life, but in the urban cities, people eat less like their ancestors and more from a packet or tin.

The relationship with the land and the nutritional importance of ancestral foods is under threat in the Capital City, as the more hectic lifestyle and pressure of time and money begins to dictate the diet of the family.

A Suva father recently told me of his annoyance that his children refused to eat rourou, the Polynesian dish of boiled taro leaves in coconut milk, preferring to eat instant noodles. Rourou is central to the South Pacific diet as it provides a rich source of vitamin A, which is needed for proper growth, healthy eyes and protection from disease; especially for young Pacific Island children.

This is why the taro leaf is found in many dishes across the South Pacific islands as well as Hawai’i; it is a medicine food handed down by our Austronesian ancestors.

If you haven’t been down to Suva markets for a while then I urge readers to reconnect with their ancestral past, but get there as early as you can, especially the Saturday fish market. Before our arrival at 6am, I imagined there would hardly be any customers but I was pleasantly wrong.

By 7am the markets are jam- packed with clever shoppers and chefs in search of the freshest and rarest seafood.

I had planned to cook a fish dish but discovered a villager with plump rock oysters and another with meaty kaikoso clams.

The variety of seafood is absolutely stunning and well worth getting up early.

The fish market is filled with wonderfully Fijian produce like giant vasua (clams), fresh and smoked octopus, other clams of all different varieties, and so many species of fish that are rarely seen on restaurant menus.

The ocean and river prawns are both gigantic and tiny, with the bigger crustaceans quickly scooped by restaurant owners and visiting Chinese. The Chinese are also attracted to the fresh beche-de-mer (sea cucumber), painted rock lobsters, cawaki (sea urchins) and donu (coral trout).

It’s disappointing to see local vendors increase the prices of this seafood because of the Chinese tourist dollar, as it becomes too expensive for locals, but I guess that’s business.

Across the fruit and vegetable market, some stallholders are getting smart and coming up with clever ways to attract customers.

With so many stalls selling similar produce, the entrepreneurial vendors are turning their idle time into bigger profits by taking the hard work out of preparing their fruits and vegetables. They also understand the average city family or single worker doesn’t have as much time anymore, so have turned to ready-peeled and chopped fruits and vegetables; all sold by the heap or bowl. It’s a win-win for both vendor and customer.

The next evolution would be for the stallholder to sell little containers of pre-made sauces for chop suey, black bean, Sichuan, satay peanut and Chinese chilli for customers to take home and just add their meat or seafood.

The market gardeners have also begun to introduce many more varieties of green vegetables, melons and strange looking produce that will be alien to most Fijians, but give them a try with different sauces.

I applaud these vendors who are not only making a little more money for themselves, but are helping to keep their customers happy and healthy. Mother nature would be proud of her matanivanua.

* Lance Seeto is the multi-award winning executive chef based on Mana Island and is Fiji Airway’s Culinary Ambassador and host of Fiji TV’s Taste of Paradise. Season 4 is now filming across the remote Fiji Islands.Fijitimes

32) Korea Funds Feasibility Study For Fiji Port

Hope to expand bilateral relations

By Reginald Chandar

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, May 25, 2015) – The Republic of Korea has pledged USD$730,000 for a feasibility study on the proposed Natovi Multipurpose Fishing Port in Tailevu.

Minister for Fisheries, Osea Naiqamu after signing a Memorandum of Understanding with Korean Government officials in Seoul said the feasibility study will ensure that Fiji maintains ease of access to other parts of the Pacific through all modes of transportation and the high standards of shore based support services with back up infrastructure options.

He said the signing marked a milestone achievement for the Fijian Government in that it showed Korea’s willingness to lend a helping hand and share its expert knowledge that has built Korea into what it is today.

“Korea is a country rich in resources and serves as a leading maritime powerhouse in the World. It is exactly this powerhouse that we wish to tap into to get the best of what Korea has to offer. And similar to what you aspire to, our Government also seeks to create new job opportunities and take the lead role in reinvigorating our economy for the benefit of all her people,” he said.

The MOU now allows both countries to facilitate the sharing of best practices and the exchange of administrative and technical and human resources necessary in areas of mutual interest through cooperation projects on multi-purpose fishing port complex and other types of sea facilities development.

Korean Minister for Oceans and Fisheries, Yoo Ki June said the Korean Government wishes to increase cooperation on multi-purpose fishing port complex and other types of sea facilities development between the two countries based on principles of fairness, reciprocity and mutual benefit. Not limited to infrastructure, other types of sea facilities will include the main jetty or quay areas, main breakwater, lee breakwater, slipway, mooring basin, navigational lights, navigational beacons and a finger jetty or pontoon.

Minister Naiqamu was accompanied to Korea by the Director of Fisheries Department, Mr Suresh Chandra.



33) Drug suspect detained in Darwin

The National, Monday May 25th, 2015

A FORMER Papua New Guinean senior public servant is in police custody in Darwin, Australia, on charges of allegedly smuggling the drug methamphetamine,  known as well as ice.
Police Commissioner Gari Baki said yesterday he was aware of the incident and was awaiting further reports.
Baki did not elaborate but a source said the suspect was remanded in custody and denied bail by Darwin police.
The suspect appeared in a district court for pre-mention on May 19 and was denied bail. The matter was adjourned until June 16 when the suspect will again appear for mention.
The source said the suspect was detained at Darwin Airport in Northern Territory on the March 15 when an unknown quantity of marketable quality of drugs named methamphetamine known as ice were found in the suspect’s  luggage. It is not known where the suspect had arrived from.
It is believed the suspect is the second PNG citizen to be charged for allegedly smuggling ice into Australia.
The first was a woman from Southern Highlands who was sentenced to 10 years jail in February by a Cairns court for smuggling about 4kg of
ice.  Three packages of drugs with an estimated street value of A$5 million (K10.8m) were found hidden in a false bottom in her checked baggage at the Cairns Airport on arrival from Port Moresby on an Air Niugini flight in October 2013.

34) Head of Vanuatu bank reportedly arrested in Thailand

25 May 2015

Police in Thailand have reportedly arrested the Head of Vanuatu’s United Development of the Pacific Bank, Ken Lai, for alleged money laundering.

Vanuatu’s Daily Post Newspaper says Mr Lai was arrested along with the company’s vice president, Yang Yuan Zhao, and seven Chinese accomplices.

The bank first registered in Vanuatu over a year ago and also has a charitable foundation which has donated money to a number of social organisations, churches and schools in Vanuatu.

Mr Lai was recently in Port Vila distributing humanitarian assistance vouchers to communities affected by Cyclone Pam.

They left the country promising that two containers of supplies would be arriving in the middle of next month, and those with vouchers would be able to exchange them for rice and sheets of corrugated iron.RNZI


35) No Tsunami Threat After Latest Solomon Islands Earthquake
Earthquakes latest in recent Melanesian series

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, May 23, 2015) – The Solomon Islands has been struck by a 6.8 magnitude earthquake, the second large one today.

The latest quake, with a depth of 33 kilometres, struck just after 11am local time near the Santa Cruz islands, near the border with Vanuatu.

Another earthquake of the same magnitude struck earlier this morning near Kira Kira at a depth of 37 kilometres.

None of them triggered a tsunami warning.

Today’s earthquakes are the latest in a series of large tremors to hit the Melanesia region in recent weeks, none of which have caused any significant damage.

Radio New Zealand International


36) Tuna companies urged to do more for Pacific people
By Online Editor
6:26 pm GMT+12, 24/05/2015, Fiji

Papua New Guinea Fisheries and Marine Resources Minister Mao Zeming has called on countries that reap billions of dollars from the Pacific’s tuna resource to do more to promote sustainability and create opportunities for the people in region.

Speaking at a fisheries symposium in Fiji last Wednesday, Zeming said PNG’s 2.5 million square km Exclusive Economic Zone held about 18% of the world’s tuna stock, but the people were mere bystanders who didn’t benefit much from this vast wealth.

He said only recently some Distant Water Fishing Nations had recognised this and begun to invest in downstream processing and sustainable coastal fisheries projects.

He singled out the Republic of Korea (South Korea) for praise.  He said Korea was working closely with Pacific states, including PNG, to address challenges facing the Pacific people.

“PNG has over seven million people and a high population growth rate. It is important that this sector provides employment and income earning opportunities for our people.

“Today, PNG has five tuna processing plants in operation providing direct employment to over 20,000 people. Thousands more benefit from spin off opportunities, and indirect employment.

“Later this year another loining plant will be opened in Lae, Morobe Province. It will provide more jobs for our people, and make the industry more competitive in the international market.

“We have received a number of interests from Korean fishing companies to invest in tuna processing in PNG. A proposal is now before Cabinet for approval,” Minister Zeming said.

The Minister said that with rapid population growth, demand for food was putting pressure on coastal fisheries and resources.

“A classic example is the sea cucumber fisheries which has been declared overfished in PNG and other Pacific countries. A six year moratorium was introduced in 2009.”

He said just declaring a moratorium was not good enough. The government was therefore looking at alternative income earning opportunities for the people, such as sustainable aquaculture and mari-culture.

“We appreciate the support of our stakeholders, like Korea, in this respect and look forward to developing this partnership.”

The conference was organized by the Korean Maritime Institute. According to the institute, South Korea netted 389,000 tons of tuna in 2014. Of this, 69% came from the Pacific, mainly the counties who are parties to the Nauru Agreement, including PNG.



37) Uncertain future

Ropate Valemei
Monday, May 25, 2015

THE future of children and youths is bleak because of the national debt, says Public Account Committee chairman Professor Biman Prasad.

During the Pacific Media Assistance Scheme (PACMAS) budget reporting training at the Tanoa Plaza Hotel last week, he said the issue was important because it would affect Fiji’s future leaders.

Government debt was about $3.8billion in 2013, about 51.4 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), a decline from 53.4 per cent of GDP in the preceding year.

Of this amount, $2.7b comprised domestic debt while $1.1b was external debt.

Government debt was also expected to further decline to 49.7 per cent of GDP.

Youth activist Peter Waqavonovono shared similar sentiments at the recent Fiji Institute of Accountants congress in Sigatoka.

Mr Waqavonovono said leaders of tomorrow would suffer by paying debts.

According to the Ministry of Finance’s supplement to the 2015 Budget, Government was committed to ensuring that public debt was sustainable and prudently managed over the medium term.

“The debt to GDP ratio has been declining as a result of the fiscal consolidation stance adopted over the years, sustained economic growth and effective risk management,” the supplement said.

It said domestic debt accounted for about 70 per cent of total debt.Fijitimes


38) Takia band goes North

Luke Rawalai
Monday, May 25, 2015

AS part of their first ever national tour renowned reggae band Takia is set to give their fans in the North an experience of their lives during their tour of Savusavu and Labasa this week

Speaking during an interview yesterday, the band’s manager Don Prasad said they were ready to rock Savusavu and Labasa come Friday.

Mr Prasad said they were scheduled to perform in Savusavu on Friday and at Subrail Park in Labasa the following night.

“We are encouraging fans to come and join us at the Savusavu Hot Springs Hotel on May 29 and the Subrail Park, on 30th for a night of fun experience and fine singing,” he said.

“The iTaukei reggae band is made up of a few iTaukei boys, including a Japanese national and a Kiwi lad.

“The band has produced chart toppers like Oi auwe, a smashing hit that took the country by storm since it was released.”Fijitimes


39) PNG welcome NZ, Australia challenge at Pacific Games

25 May 2015

Papua New Guinea is looking forward to welcoming New Zealand and Australia into the Pacific Games family and says they are relishing the added competition.

The Trans-Tasman neighbours accepted an invitation to enter teams in taekwondo, weightlifting, sailing and rugby sevens in Port Moresby, in the first step towards an expanded Continental Games.

The four sports are all ones where the Pacific nations have proven competitive in the past and Team PNG Chef de Mission Richard Kassman says the hosts are embracing the challenge.

“It’s quite exciting. Particularly New Zealand are very high up in sailing and so is Cook [Islands] in the world, and in our region, so this will really push our guys. The rugby sevens is going to be a fantastic competition and I’m hoping the international television etc covers those events”.

The Pacific Games begin in just under six weeks.RNZI

40a) Fijiana retain Women’s Sevens Series berth

25 May 2015

Fiji will be back on the Women’s Sevens Series next season after finishing eight in their debut first full season on tour.

The Fijiana outclassed China 38-12 to win the bowl final at the weekend in the final leg of the season in Amsterdam.

It’s their fourth bowl title in six events and was enough to ensure they finished six points clear of Spain.

A top-eight finish for the season ensures Fiji maintain their permanent spot on the series next season.

New Zealand, Canada, Australia and England finished in the top four to earn direct entry into next year’s Olympic Sevens tournament.

Fiji can still qualify for Rio via a regional qualifier later in the year.RNZI

40b) Fiji Open Tennis starts tomorrow

Monday, May 25, 2015

Update: 4:15PM SAMOAN Marvin So’onalole is the top seed for men’s singles during the Tattslotto Fiji Open Tennis Championship which starts at the Denarau Golf and Racquet Club courts in Nadi tomorrow.

So’onalole is no stranger to the country having participated during the International Tennis Federation sanctioned junior tournaments here some years ago.

He is part of the Samoan team that will play at the upcoming Pacific Games.

Fiji’s United States-based national team player William O’Connell is the second seed.

National rep Annie Shannon who is also based in the United States is the number one seed in the women’s singles.Fijitimes

40c) Warriors win opening game

Shalveen Chand
Monday, May 25, 2015

THE Telecom Fiji Warriors registered their first win on the tour of South America as they humbled a fiery Uruguay side 30-22 in Monte Video yesterday morning.

Uruguay fielded its national side against the Warriors, basically it was the Los Teros World Cup side against the Fiji A side.

Fiji scored five tries against Uruguay’s three with captain Isireli Ledua grabbing a brace.

The match started with Uruguay opting to play the kicking game which worked wonders for Fiji as they shared good possession.

Ledua scored Fiji’s first in the ninth minute. The hooker showing that Fijian forwards have pace also. Number eight John Dyre getting Fiji’s second in the 32nd minute while Eroni Vasiteri scored on the 39th minute.

Vasiteri breaking from the midfield ran 30 metres to scores. Warriors lead 15-3 at half time.

Ledua began the second spell as he did the first with a try in the 43rd minute.

Replacement forward Kirawn Sanday was yellow carded for a ruck infringement in the 56th minute but that did not deter the Warriors.

Wing Nacani Wakaya scored in the 58th minute after good support play to take Fiji’s tally to 27-10.

Fullback Tikilaci Vuibau added a penalty to take Fiji’s lead to 30 points.

In the last 10 minutes Uruguay confided play to the forwards resulting in two late tries.

Warriors manager Dan Domoni said it was a tough match and they expected the matches to get tougher.

“Game one has gone and we are so overwhelmed with the prayers and support we’ve been getting from family, friends and loved ones,” he said.

The match is the first of two and the winner of the series will be awarded the Copa Scotiabank.

The tour gives the local players a chance to impress the national selectors for World Cup spots.

The Warriors are set to face the Argentina Pampas on Thursday.

40d) Inglis set for series opener

Monday, May 25, 2015

GOLD COAST, Qld – Queensland coach Mal Meninga has confirmed Greg Inglis will play Wednesday night’s State of Origin opener in Sydney after the recovering centre emerged from quarantine yesterday.

It has been revealed Inglis spent at last two nights in a Gold Coast hospital as he battled what is believed to be tonsillitis and had been quarantined from the Maroons team at their camp all week. However, Meninga has sent standby centre Dane Gagai back to NRL club Newcastle after Inglis joined his teammates at training on Sunday, albeit watching from the sidelines.

Fellow star centre Justin Hodges has also been cleared, returning to training yesterday after being sidelined all week with a foot wound suffered in a bike crash at the Maroons’ Gold Coast camp.

40e) Tamou ready for State of Origin I

Monday, May 25, 2015

COFFS HARBOUR, NSW – James Tamou says he has erased his mental demons and has backed his surgically-repaired neck to withstand the rigours of State of Origin.

After a timid opening to the season, the NSW front-rower has been a tower of strength for North Queensland over the past month and appears to be building nicely for Wednesday’s Origin opener in Sydney.

Tamou admits to being down on form and confidence in the opening rounds after undergoing surgery on his neck in the off-season.

The 26-year-old originally suffered the injury against Canterbury last year and at the time complained he could not feel his left arm.

He returned after a month for the Cowboys’s finals run, only to rule himself out of Australia’s Four Nations campaign to have surgery in an effort to avoid long-term problems.

40f) Kiwis lead at Lords

Monday, May 25, 2015

LONDON – Kane Williamson starred for New Zealand as they outplayed England on the third day of the first Test at Lord’s yesterday.

Williamson’s well-constructed 132 was the centrepiece of New Zealand’s 523 all out which gave them a first-innings lead of 134.

The Black Caps followed-up with two early wickets to reduce England to 2-25 in their second dig.

But England captain Alastair Cook (32 not out) and Ian Bell (29 not out) survived some testing overs to take the hosts to 2-74 at stumps — a deficit of 60 runs.

Williamson’s innings was all the more impressive as he was one of several New Zealand players who had arrived in England just days before the match following stints in the Twenty20 Indian Premier League.

“It is nice to get your name on the (Lord’s honours) board but at the same time I was disappointed to get out at the stage I did,” Williamson told Sky Sports.

“The challenge is the mental transition from a shorter format to the longer one and make good decisions over a longer period of time.”

Looking ahead to the fourth day, Williamson added: “It is important that we are patient and the bowlers stick to their areas.”

New Zealand, bidding for just their second Test victory at Lord’s of all time, resumed Saturday on 2-303, with Williamson 92 not out and Ross Taylor unbeaten on 47.

Batting with impressive serenity for a 24-year-old, Williamson’s century came in just over three hours off 148 balls including 12 fours.

It was the talented stroke-player’s 10th hundred in 40 Tests — an impressive strike-rate — and the 14th by a New Zealand batsman in a Test at Lord’s.

But batting in overcast conditions became significantly more challenging once England took the new ball after three overs.

The extra bounce proved Taylor’s undoing when, on 62, he fended at a rising ball from Stuart Broad and was brilliantly caught, one-handed down the legside at full stretch, by diving wicket-keeper Jos Buttler.

New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum (42), struck his first ball, from Broad, through cover-point for four and pulled Stokes for six.

But his typically aggressive knock ended when he miscued an attempted pull off debutant paceman Mark Wood to Root at third man.

McCullum faced just 38 balls, including six fours and a six.

Debutant Mark Wood, denied a first Test wicket on Friday by an umpire review for a marginal no-ball, saw fortune again turn in his favour when Buttler held another superb catch to dismiss Corey Anderson off a genuine leg-glance.

“It was nice to get wickets in the end,” said Durham quick Wood, who finished with three for 93 in 27 overs.”

40g) Waratahs down Crusaders in thriller

Monday, May 25, 2015

SYDNEY – NSW Waratahs climbed to the top of Super Rugby’s Australian conference and possibly ended the Crusaders 13-year finals run with a 32-22 home win in a brutal and exciting clash at ANZ Stadium.

The Waratahs led 25-8 early in the second half Saturday night but the Crusaders piled on 14 unanswered points to get within three with fewer than 15 minutes to go.

Waratahs five-eighth Bernard Foley clinched the bonus-point win two minutes from the end when he scored their fourth try, chasing through his own kick and sliding over the line after Crusaders winger Nafi Tuitavake couldn’t handle the ball.

The Crusaders, who started the round in ninth spot, played out the last 10 minutes with 14 men after champion flanker Richie McCaw was sin binned for entering a ruck from the side.

The Waratahs also played with 14 men for 10 minutes when hooker Tolu Latu was punished for a lifting tackle on Sam Whitelock.

Winger Taqele Naiyaravoro, who scored two tries, and lock Will Skelton, each sailed close to the wind with some shoulder charge tackles in an intensely physical encounter.

“Everyone was scrambling defence, we were able to link that to some good intensity so I was very pleased with that attitude,” Waratahs coach Michael Cheika said.

He felt fatigue and a couple of errors, rather than a drop in intensity, contributed to the Crusaders’ comeback.

Cheika thought Latu didn’t have anything to worry about for his tackle on Whitelock but Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder said it would be interesting to see what the citing commissioner made of the game.

He felt McCaw’s card represented inconsistency on the part of referee Marius van der Westhuizen.

Asked if NSW had pushed the letter of the law at times, Blackadder said: “I think so.

“Both teams knew that (at) the breakdowns that there was going to be a lot of physicality and it certainly showed out there. It was pretty willing.”

Cheika said he was proud of Skelton’s performance and wasn’t concerned about the nature of some of his tackles. Officals disagreed and both Skelton and Latu were later cited for the lifting tackle on Whitelock in the 17th minute.

Former Australia lock Dean Mumm will join the squad for their two games in South Africa.

Blackadder said Slade tweaked a quadriceps, captain Kieran Read suffered a head knock and Israel Dagg would miss the remainder of the Super campaign after aggravating his calf strain in the warmup, which forced him out of the game.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *