Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1087 ( Monday 13 March 2017 )

MELANESIA

1) http://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/326470/png-govt-criticised-for-economic-mismanagement

2) Fiji govt accused of demeaning indigenous community

An opposition politician in Fiji has accused the Government of demeaning the indigenous community and ignoring other issues to further its agenda for a seat on the United Nations Human Rights Council.

The leader of the National Federation Party, Biman Prasad’s comments come after a speech by Fiji’s Ambassador to Geneva, Nazhat Shameem, about the country’s 2013 constitution.

In that speech, she said that until the Bainimarama government’s constitution, the i-Taukei community’s protections was a form of institutionalised racism that created a privileged caste.

Professor Prasad said Ambassador Shameem’s comments were demeaning to the indigenous community, and ignores a number of human rights issues the 2013 constitution had created.

“The 2013 constitution has limitations in the bill of rights and there are a lot of complaints with respect to how police have dealt with people dying in custody and the rest of it.”

“But more importantly, the 2013 constitution preserves all the decrees that the military government promulgated,” Professor Prasad.13/3/17 RNZI

3) Rising costs

Nasik Swami
Sunday, March 12, 2017-Fijitimes

IF incomes do not keep pace with inflation, households will increasingly find cost of living going up.

Economist Neelesh Gounder of the University of the South Pacific said this while explaining the uniform feedback from the February Tebbutt Times Poll showing cost of living and employment to be the two major national issues.

The cost of living was ranked the number one issue by 46 per cent of those polled and employment ranked second by 32 per cent of respondents.

Particularly noting the consumer price index (CPI) frequently used to measure changes in cost of living between 2012 and last year, had increased by about 12 per cent, which Mr Gounder said averaged about 2.4 per cent a year.

However, he noted that during the same period, the cost of food and non-alcoholic beverages, one of the most common components in household budgets, increased by about 20 per cent.

“So, these types of changes faced by households could be reflected in 46 per cent of those polled choosing cost of living as the main issue,” Mr Gounder said.

“Has income kept pace with changes in cost of living? In few sectors, it has. Unfortunately, the story is not the same for the majority of the economically-active population.

“The bargaining power of workers and trade unions has seen a significant decline in sectors such as banking, aviation, telecommunications and municipal councils since 2011 due to the Essential National Industries Act.

“Many trade unions have been unable to file claims since then. As a result, several sectors have seen no changes in wages and salaries since 2011. While trade unions are now beginning to make claims, there will be a lag and one summer is unlikely to make a swallow.”

Mr Gounder said the non-unionised sectors such as the informal employment or household enterprises engaged in agricultural (dalo, sugar cane, fisherwomen, roots crops and mixed crops) and related activities also needed to be considered.

Then there are domestic workers (including family/no pay), security officers, drivers and related unskilled workers where low wages have remained almost stagnant, he said.

On the second issue, Mr Gounder said while the estimated unemployment rate in 2014 was 6.2 per cent, overall, it had remained around 6 per cent during the last decade.

For youths aged 15-24, unemployment rate was estimated at 18.2 per cent in 2014, he said.

And he referenced the International Labour Organisation 2015 report that noted around 40 per cent working youths were in a job that did not match their educational qualifications.

In March 2014, Mr Gounder said the National Employment Centre reported that the number of unemployed registered with them was 30,000, out of which more than 1000 were degree holders and 11,000 had some form of tertiary qualification.

“On average, unemployment rates have persisted around 6 per cent during the last decade.

“Slow recovery immediately following the 2006 coup and quality as well as disparities in growth have been a major hindrance in creating more jobs.

“There are disparities in economic growth between rural/urban areas, between regions and between sectors. Most of the jobs created (around 70-80 per cent) are expected to come from the services sector.

Therefore, mismatch of skill/qualifications is becoming a key issue in unemployment.”
http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=392492

4a )  https://www.freewestpapua.org/2017/03/07/call-for-more-access-to-west-papua/

4b ) https://www.freewestpapua.org/2017/03/07/indonesia-unhrc-reaction-diverts-from-serious-hr-violations-in-papua-piango/

4c  ) https://www.freewestpapua.org/2017/02/18/world-renowned-poet-benjamin-zephaniah-takes-a-stand-for-a-free-west-papua-petition/

5 ) http://dailypost.vu/news/vanuatu-customs-and-vcbf-association-sign-mou/article_64ba4d75-ee5a-59ac-aa56-a730d91328d4.html

6) Customs Dept requests roadworthiness compliance extension for older vehicles

Posted: March 12, 2017 | Author: bobmakin | Filed under: The Daily Digest |

The Customs Department is asking for an extension to the payment period for road tax
.Since 31 March is currently the legal deadline, the end of June is being requested. Cyclone Pam enabled a similar extension, and Customs being a Government service one would imagine it is all likely to be agreed. This will especially please older Hyundai drivers who in yesterday’s Daily Post were wanting a delay. Many of their older buses still perform on rarely maintained rural roads to bring market produce to the capital. Some of their association members were even proposing a strike recently since many were refused renewal by those policing the roadworthy checks, disqualification often alleged to be because of checks which bore no relation to roadworthiness. But, like all of us, Hyundai buses, especially of the reconditioned kind, can grow too old to work effectively.

Also in the good news department is the imminent handing over of calorimeters to the Agriculture Department Biosecurity laboratory and the Food Technology Centre. Certain exporters of large quantities of kava for export are also purchasing such equipment. Calorimetric testing will be essential for export of kava intended for consumption as a beverage to maintain Vanuatu’s huge lead in export quality noble varieties of kava.

News which failed to reach you yesterday (owing to internet difficulties) covered Air Vanuatu Operations Limited winning a Supreme Court claim made against it by Peter Fogarty for Vt 9 million. Fogarty’s claim was also ruled invalid because the employment contract which gave him his position did not comply with legal requirements.

And yesterday saw news of the custom land owners of the Federesin land, the family Lauru of Ifira turning down Vt 150 million and accepting custom food and mats and accepting only a lease payment for the Federesin Fish Market. The ground-breaking for the fish market was performed by the Deputy PM Joe Natuman directing the movements of a bulldozer. The fish market should open later this year.

We must all be concerned at the reappearance of invasions of the giant African snail which considerably damaged garden produce on Efate back in the 1970s. There have always been some around but the heavy rains seem to be what they love best of all. If you aren’t aware of the strength of the shells of the big ones, find out first with a hammer.

Advertisements
Anniversary of Vanuatu’s reclamation of Matthew and Hunter Islands celebrated today →

POLYNESIA

7) French Polynesia’s Temaru struggles to get backing

French Polynesia’s Oscar Temaru appears to be struggling to secure the backing needed to stand in next month’s French presidential election.

An update by the French Constitutional Council said it had so far validated only 36 names in support of Tahiti’s pro-independence leader who last month announced that he had secured the 500 backers needed to run.

Less than a week remains for the more than 40 candidates to secure the authorised and approved signatures of the special electors, who include parliamentarians and mayors, to get onto the ballot paper.

Electors of French Polynesia’s anti-independence Tahoeraa Huiraatira have in large numbers opted to back France’s right-wing leader Marine Le Pen.

Mr Temaru has said should he win most votes in French Polynesia he would consider the result to be the basis for a declaration of sovereignty.

The two top candidates will go through to a run-off vote in May to determine the successor of François Hollande.13/3/17 RNZI

8) Cook Islands justice ministry strike averted 11 March 2017

Strike action by staff at the Cook Islands Ministry of Justice appears to have been avoided, for now, after discussions with Justice Minister Nandi Glassie.

This week, the Office of the Public Service Commissioner recommended that salary bands across the board at the ministry be reduced by as much as US$9,000.

Angered by the prospect of their pay being cut by between US$1,300 and $4,000, the ministry’s 68 staff had threatened to take strike action, which would have caused widespread disruption.

The secretary of justice, Tingika Elikana, said he could understand the frustration, as many staff were struggling to make ends meet and, in many cases, had to work second jobs.

However, government heavyweights have rejected any notion of paycuts.

Mr Glassie, Prime Minister Henry Puna, and the head of the commission, Russell Thomas, have all said that salary reductions will not be made for current staff.RNZI

9) ) http://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/326359/samoa-pm-confirms-return-of-suspended-police-commissioner

MICRONESIA

10) US court ruling on Guam described as frustrating

A long-time campaigner for Guam’s independence says a federal court ruling last week is frustrating, and misses the point of decolonisation.

The island’s push for a plebiscite on its political status was dealt a setback when a judge ruled the law limiting a vote to native inhabitants was unconstitutional, violating the rights of non-native residents.

The case was brought to the US federal court on Guam by Arnold Davis, a white, non-native resident, who sued the government after he claimed his constitutional rights were violated by the limits.

But Victoria-Lola Leon Guerrero, who is the co-chair of the Independence for Guam committee, said the vote should be limited to native inhabitants, as it was their rights that were taken away.

“A decolonisation vote is not a right that should be extended to all because it is a vote that is intended to restore a right that was taken away from a very specific group of people, and that is the human rights of sovereignty,” she said.

Victoria-Lola Leon Guerrero said the ruling stalls any progress towards a plebiscite, but the native community would not be giving up its fight.13/3/17 RNZI

11) CNMI told unmanaged growth may jeopardise tourism industry

The Northern Marianas’ tourism authority has been warned that unmanaged growth may jeopardise the territory’s ability to compete in the tourism industry long-term.

A recent study by Horwarth HTL, a Hong Kong-based consultant for the Marianas Visitors Authority, said there was an overall lack of planning for future development.

It said such unmanaged growth threatens the Northern Marianas because it does not allow the “loss of utilisation” of natural resources on the islands.

The study also said the long queues at airports and the condition of most of the territory’s hotels could sap tourists’ enthusiasm and patience.13/3/17 RNZI

12 ) http://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/326299/caught-in-the-crosshairs,-life-as-a-militarised-island

13) Kiribati’s new landing craft launched in Taiwan


4:11 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, Kiribati

A landing craft to service Kiribati’s Line and Phoenix Islands has been launched in Taiwan.

The launching of the vessel, to be called LC Linnix, after the two island groups, was observed by the Minister of Phoenix and Line Islands Development, Mikarite Temari.

Construction started in March last year and the vessel is due to be delivered to Kiribati by the 17th of May.

The Kirbati Government is to send a crew of 12 to sail the LC Linnix to Kiribati.

SOURCE: RNZI/PACNEWS

14) Unique handicrafts from Micronesia at Pasifika

6:31 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, New Zealand

Aucklanders will be in for a treat with the unique handicrafts from the Marshall Islands showcasing at Pasifika Festival 2017.

Although shop owner Lucia Guavis of the Elefa Handicraft Shop, in Majuro, Marshall Islands, cannot be part of the Pacific Islands Trade & Invest New Zealand Pacific Path 2 Market delegation due to unforeseen circumstance, the handicrafts will still be here under the Republic of Marshall Islands, Office of Investment and Commerce who are the local Economic Development Agency partnering with PT&I.

28 exhibitors from 8 Pacific Island Forum countries will attend the Pasifika Festival with representatives from the trade officials from the respective countries.

The PT&I’s Pacific Path 2 Market programme has been run in the Pacific for several years and is aimed at helping Pacific Island businesses export to New Zealand and create jobs for the local communities back home.  In 2016, PT&I New Zealand conducted 10 Path 2 Market workshops in Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Solomon, Palau, FSM, Pohnpei and the Republic of Marshall Islands.

Elefa Handicrafts is a family owned business that sources its products from a selected group of weavers who take the natural materials from the 24-low lying coral atolls making up 1,156 individual islands and inlets. The designs and patterns of the Marshall Islands are unique and renown internationally for the intricacy and fine style. The weavers use coconut fronds, pandanus tree and cowrie shells. A single piece of handicraft can take many days or weeks to produce from the preparation of the leaves through to weaving the completed products.

Handicrafts is an important source of income for women in Marshall Islands where around 70% of women are not in paid employment and most the adult population struggling to keep up with the demands of modern environment.

Guavis had visited New Zealand several years ago, as part of a small delegation to Pasifika festival to scope opportunities for business. But the New Zealand market is a very long distance from Marshall Islands and associated costs of freight made exporting here difficult.  However, Guavis found an advocate for Marshall Islands handicrafts in New Zealand and international interest.

The two PT&I Pacific Path to Market Northern Pacific workshops played to an enthusiastic audience of about 30 small business entrepreneurs whose companies are potentially ready for export.  The workshops were specifically targeted to new and established exporters to give them insights into exporting to international markets such as New Zealand.  The workshop included pricing, marketing and attracting investment into the country amongst others.  A practical technique taught in the workshops is how to make a business ‘pitch’ to someone who knows nothing about the business in the time it takes for an elevator to move between floors.

Although Guavis could not attend the Pasifika Festival in Auckland, RMI handicrafts will generate much interest amongst an audience with an eye for authentic Pacific made products.

SOURCE: PACIFIC PERSICOPE/PACNEWS

TOK PISIN


15a ) Vanuatu Kava loa bai kisim taem long pipal i bihaenim

Updated 10 March 2017,
Caroline Tiriman

Dipatman  blong agrikalsa long Vanuatu nau iwok hard long skulim ol Kava farmas long planim ol gutpla Kava na noken  planim ol rabis Kava  oa 2 Day Kava.

Despla wok istap aninit long ol Loa em oli bin amendim long 2016 blong larim ol pipal isave planim ol gutpla oa Noble Kava em oli ken salim tu igo long ol narapla kantri.

Kava industry long Vanuatu ibin bagarap long 2015 bihaen long Cyclone Pam na bikpla drought ibin hamarim kantri na bagarapim ol Kava farms.

Planti kantri long tripla rijan blong Pacific, Melanesia, Micronesia na Polynesia isave iusim Kava long dring na tu long ol taem blong celebrations, tasol nau planti pipal blong ol narapla kantri tu isave laikim Kava.

Dr Vincent Lebot blong Department of Agriculture itokim Radio Australia  olsem,  maski igat Kava loa istap, em ba kisim sampla taem long ol pipal i bihaenim despla loa.ABC

15b) Kisim Bek PNG: Oro Gavana itok

Updated 10 March 2017,
Caroline Tiriman

Gavana blong Oro provins, Gary Juffa  i mekim despla toktok taem kantri iwok long redi long National ileksan em oli ting bai kamap long mun June.

Ol pipal blong Papua New Guinea imas sanap strong na kisim bek kantri blong ol long laen em oli save salim nating graon igo long ol narapla pipal, na tu oli mas sanap strong na planim ol kaikai blong ol iet na lukautim helt blong ol.

Gavana i askim tu ol pipal long noken baem tumas ol kaikai em oli save kam long ol kantri long Asia we i pulap long ol kaen kaen chemical.

Narapla samting emi laikim PNG i noken bihaenim em despla Pacer-Plus wokbung blong trade em Australia na New Zealand i laik kamapim wantem ol Pacific Island kantri.ABC

15c) Bougainville Red Cross bai statim liklik Dokta projek

Updated 10 March 2017, 11:42 AEDT

John Papik

Igat tingting istap nau long givim First Aid training igo long ol skul pikinini long Papua New Guinea long halivim ol long redi long givim halivim igo long ol pipol sapos igat ol bikpela bagarap i kamap.

Stanley Azagun husait i cordinator  blong Bougainville Red Cross itok long Bougainville i makim  pinis  tupela praimeri skul long oli  statim dispela program em oli kolim long “Little Doctors”

Emi tok  bikpela tingting insait long dispela program em long  givim ol skul pikinini basic first aid training, disaster na emergensi , community outreach program long mekim ol pikinini igat save long “first Aid “sapos igat bagarap i kamap.

Dispela program bai kamap tu long sampela Praimeri skul long Port Moresby.ABC

FRENCH


16a ) http://www.lnc.nc/article/iles/mare/sur-le-chemin-des-ecoles-de-mare
16b ) http://www.lnc.nc/article/iles/lifou/danser-les-gestes-traditionnels
16c ) http://www.lnc.nc/article/grand-noumea/noumea/les-casinos-demandent-une-reduction-de-la-taxe-communale

PACIFIC

17) SPC serves Pacific development for 70 years

Published: 06 February 2017

Noumea, New Caledonia – The Pacific Community (SPC) today marks 70 years of serving Pacific development.

Pacific Community Director-General, Dr Colin Tukuitonga, said: “We are excited at the timely opportunity to reflect and celebrate the shared progress we have made with our members, who own and govern our development organisation, and our partners over the years.”

“Over its 70-year history, SPC has grown into one of the primary regional bodies contributing to the development of the Pacific Island region. This is testimony to the strong leadership, commitment and effective governance of our members and partners to build and shape their development organisation with a strong shared regional vision and purpose for a prosperous and resilient Pacific.”

SPC’s headquarters are in Noumea, New Caledonia, with a regional hub in Suva hosted by the Government of Fiji. We also have offices in Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Federated States of Micronesia, improving our physical presence, sub-regionally and nationally, and strengthening ongoing engagement with our 26 member countries and territories.

We work across more than 20 sectors to support members’ development aspirations, by contributing to building a resilient Pacific Islands region. We are known for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health surveillance, geoscience, and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

SPC’s efforts are guided by our Strategic Plan 2016–2020, the Framework for Pacific Regionalism, the SAMOA Pathway and the 2030 Development Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals. SPC is the principal scientific and technical agency in the Pacific Region, supporting development since 1947.

Dr Tukuitonga explained: “Our responsibility and service to our members and partners will not stop at producing good science and technical advice. Collectively, we must continue to ensure that we are making a difference in people’s lives. SPC’s comparative advantage lies in our deep and nuanced understanding of the Pacific Island context, and our capacity to formulate integrated and targeted programmes that effectively tackle development challenges across the region, which also contribute to global benefits.”

Dr Tukuitonga noted that SPC recognises that development issues are complex and multi-dimensional, and cannot be solved by a sectoral approach alone, and by taking a multi-sectoral and integrated approach to responding to Pacific Islands’ development priorities, we draw upon skills and capabilities from around the region and internationally. As a result, SPC continues to empower Pacific communities through the sharing of expertise and skills, and lessons learned between countries and territories.

He added: “In the face of global and regional challenges, genuine and sustainable partnerships will continue to be crucial to achieving sustainable, longer-term outcomes. SPC, its members and partners remain united in our shared aspiration for a prosperous and sustainable future for all. To those same ends, SPC will redouble its efforts to ensure the organisation is in the best shape to deliver on those outcomes so that all Pacific people can lead free, healthy and productive lives, leaving no-one behind.”

– SPC

18 ) http://www.solomonstarnews.com/news/regional/12336-pacific-firms-to-showcase-their-products-at-pasifika-festival

19 ) http://www.solomonstarnews.com/news/regional/12310-fifth-pacific-regional-conference-on-disabilities

AUSTRALIA


20)  Manus Asylum Centre’s closure set for October
10:00 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, Papua New Guinea

The asylum seeker detention centre in Manus will be winding up in October,  Papua New Guinea Planning Minister Charles Abel says.

The October deadline was set by Papua New Guinea but Australia had yet to say when it should be shut.

Abel said there were various categories of people present at the centre, with different solutions around them.

“Some of them are willing to be resettled, some of them are voluntarily returning home and some are caught in the middle,” he said.

The minister said in a short timeframe, what happened to those people who did not want to settle in PNG and did not want to return home for some reason was an issue that both parties needed to resolve.

Abel said he was not aware of Australia’s response to the closure of the detention centre but said the government was very much anticipating to come up with a better solution.

Australia’s Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said the Australian government would work closely with PNG to address the issues and both countries would solve the issue accordingly.

Foreign Affairs and Immigration Minster for Rimbink Pato said both nations were handling the settlement arrangement with understanding of what they needed to do so that there was no violation or inconsistent conduct in the commitment to the United Nations.

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

ASIA

21 ) http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/2017-03-12/donald-trumps-prospective-bali-estate-met-with-resistance-by-locals-refusing-to-sell-land/1657168

WORLD


22) http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/2017-03-13/geert-wilders-dutch-rightwing-politician-pledges-to-deislamise-the-netherlands-ahead-of-election/1657318

23) Caribbean nations meet

Reuters
Sunday, March 12, 2017

HAVANA – Foreign ministers and other officials from 25 Caribbean countries met in Havana on Friday to discuss a joint response in the face of Trump administration threats to migrants and trade.

Opening remarks at the closed-door event, attended by representatives from Colombia, Mexico, Cuba and other countries in Central America and the Caribbean islands, made clear the new US administration was uppermost on the agenda, though the name of President Donald Trump was never uttered.

The United States is a key economic partner for the region.

“We are meeting at an exceptional historic moment when there are geographic changes on the global scene and we have to be prepared,” said June Soomer, who is from Saint Lucia and is secretary general of the Association of Caribbean States.

“We are not going to resign ourselves to what others in the world dictate. We are not a mediocre region, we are one of excellence and peace,” Ms Soomer said.

Cuban President Raul Castro attended the opening ceremony.

His foreign minister, Bruno Rodriguez, lit into Trump’s policies in his opening remarks, and said the organization should come up with a joint response, as the policies threaten the development models of local economies.

“The excluding and repressive migration policies announced by countries of destination, … as well as the implementation of extremely protectionist trade measures, are real challenges for our sub-region,” he said.

“In the face of the walls intended to be built, our choice should continue to be unity, solidarity and cooperation to defend the most legitimate interests of our peoples,” he said.

The meeting in Cuba comes just four days after Trump signed a revised executive order that bans the entry into the United States for 90 days for citizens of six Muslim-majority nations – Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The order revised Trump’s original travel ban issued in January, removing Iraq from the list and applying the ban only to new visa applicants.

Trump has also promised to build a wall along the Mexican border and threatened to impose tariffs on Mexican-made products.

Rodriguez met separately at the event with Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray.

“Mexico is a sovereign nation. It is a strong nation and greatly strengthened by support from the nations of Latin America, the Caribbean and the fraternal Cuban people,” Videgaray told the press, refusing further comment.

(Writing by Marc Frank; Editing by Dan Grebler and Leslie Adler)

24a) Quit, 46 US attorneys ordered

Reuters
Sunday, March 12, 2017

WASHINGTON – US Attorney General Jeff Sessions abruptly asked the remaining 46 chief federal prosecutors left over from the Obama administration to resign on Friday, including Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara, who had been asked to stay on in November by then President-elect Donald Trump.

Although US attorneys are political appointees, and the request from Mr Trump’s Justice Department is part of a routine process, the move came as a surprise. Not every new administration replaces all US attorneys at once.

A Justice Department spokeswoman confirmed the resignation requests included Mr Bharara, whose office handles some of the most critical business and criminal cases passing through the federal judicial system. Mr Bharara met Mr Trump at Trump Tower on Nov. 30. After, Mr Bharara told reporters the two had a “good meeting” and he had agreed to stay on.

A Justice Department spokesman said Mr Trump called Dana Boente, acting US deputy attorney general, to decline his resignation.

Mr Trump called Maryland US Attorney Rod Rosenstein, his pick to take over as deputy attorney general, to keep him in his post.

Mr Bharara, appointed by Democratic President Barack Obama in 2009, has pursued an aggressive push against corruption in state and city politics and is known for his prosecution of white-collar criminal cases.

24b)  http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/2017-03-12/donald-trumps-administration-fires-top-us-prosecutor-preet-bharara/1657226

HEALTH


25) Report: Kidney disease common cause of death

March 10, 2017The National Article

Chronic kidney disease is the sixth most common cause of death in Papua New Guinea, according to Health Secretary Pascoe Kase.
Kase told the 2017 World Kidney Day gathering yesterday that a report by PNG Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2010 said that the top five causes of death were lower-respiratory infection, cancer, diabetes, tuberculosis and heart disease and after kidney disease was malaria, stroke, diarrheal diseases and HIV.
“Kidney disease is a silent killer which will largely affect your quality of life, there are, however, several easy ways to reduce the risk of developing kidney diseases. First of all is to keep fit and active,” he said.
“Keep regular sugar level, monitor blood level, keep weight in check, maintain a healthy fluid intake and do not smoke.”
Kase said health professionals must educate people on the importance of eating right and healthy and looking after their health.
PNG Kidney Foundation chairman Martin Poh said World Kidney Day aimed to raise awareness of kidney-related diseases and the importance of healthy kidneys.
Poh said: “Currently at the Papua New Guinea Kidney Foundation, we have seen more than 70 patients who have been diagnosed with chronic kidney failure and undergo haemodialysis treatment three times a week for life and so far we had provided more than 2000 sessions of haemodialysis treatment.
“Patients having dialysis at our centre are the fortunate ones. There are many people in PNGwho are being diagnosed with kidney disease, but do not have access to dialysis treatment or other alternatives or they find it very expensive.”http://www.thenational.com.pg/report-kidney-disease-common-cause-death/

26 ) http://www.solomonstarnews.com/news/national/12436-surgery-made-easier

EDUCATION

27 ) http://dailypost.vu/news/education-minister-touring-schools-in-shefa-next-week/article_12390ca2-7506-58c3-97a3-4a264d0ffb51.html

28 ) http://dailypost.vu/news/learn-and-explore/article_9394c43a-cd9f-549a-a8a3-aaf932caa271.htmlPOLITIC

29) Vanuatu women want reserved seats in next provincial elections

6:54 pm GMT+12, 08/03/2017, Vanuatu

One of the women’s desire voiced during Wednesday’s International Women’s Day (IWD) in Port Vila was to be given opportunity to contest provincial elections and to increase women representatives in the Vanuatu government.

In 2013, the government approved reserved seats for women in the Port Vila Municipal Council and Luganville Municipal Council in 2015.

It was an important step towards realising women’s participation in public affairs.

Over the past couple of years, reserving seats for women in parliament has seen ongoing talks as the number of women representatives continues to decline. Today, there are no women in the 52-seat parliament.

Wednesday’s celebration stressed that female politicians are more likely to concentrate on issues that matter more to women such as gender equality.

After 36 years since independence the government has failed to ensure women representation in parliament, said Hilda Lini, one of Vanuatu’s first female MP and state minister. Lini was the first female to be elected to parliament.

She said: “Vanuatu needs more women in parliament.

“It’s really on the government to work with the Department of Women’s Affair to ensure that women are represented in parliament.

“Saying women must unite is a lame excuse.

“The government doesn’t realize it is suffering economically because it lacks economists who are women.

“It’s high time that women participate in provincial elections, through both reserved and open seats,” she added.

Minister for Justice and Community Services, Ronald Warsal, responsible for women, urged all women leaders to unite despite differences.

“Our country is very small therefore, you should not be divided.

“Your (women’s) aspirations will be realised only if you prove to the government that you stand together,” he said.

The Director of the Department of Women’s Affairs, Dorosthy Kenneth, assured the audience that her office is ready to work for change.

“Are we ready for change?”, she challenged the women.

“We might not like what the minister said about unity but it’s true,” she said.

When emphasising on preparedness, enneth has stressed that instead of just giving tickets for women to run elections, political parties should also train women to make change.

A lot of the speeches delivered were encouragement to all women and women leaders to enact change through unity.

SOURCE: VANUATU DAILY POST/PACNEWS

30) Fijian parliament to increase to 51 seats in 2018

3:17 pm GMT+12, 08/03/2017, Fiji

Fiji’s Electoral Commission has announced that they will increase the Parliament seats for 2018.

Chairperson Suresh Chandra stated that next year’s General Elections the current 50 seats will increase.

The Electoral Commission has unanimously agreed to alter the composition of Parliament for the next General Election by adding 1 more seat.

That will bring the total number of seats to 51.

“We found that in 2014, with a national population of 873,608, there was a ratio of one seat in Parliament for every 17,472 citizens-more precisely, 17,472.16. As at 01 March 2017 Fiji Bureau of Statistics has projected that the national population had increased to 886,416. In order to maintain the ratio of one seat for every 17,472 citizens, we would need 50.73 seats as at 01 March 2017. The Commission decided that 50.73 be rounded upwards to 51″ said Suresh Chandra – Fijian Electoral Commission chairman.

This is also the first time in Fiji’s history that the Electoral Commission is empowered by the Constitution to alter the number of seats in Parliament.

The Commission is empowered to do this by Section 54 of the Constitution.

“The Electoral Commission held its second meeting yesterday, 7 March 2017. In that meeting we considered Population data provided by Fiji Bureau of Statistics and data from the National Register of Voters submitted by the Fijian Elections Office, to work out the ratio of the population to the seats in 2014. The Commission then used the same ratio to assess whether there was a need to increase the number of seats based on the current population and voter data.” he said.

Chandra states that they have worked this out carefully.

“Similarly, the National Register of Voters contained the names of 591,101 citizens in 2014, for a ratio of one seat for every 11,822 registered voters. The number of registered voters has increased to 603,546 as at 01 march 2017, so we would need one more seat to maintain that ratio in the next election.” Chandra added.

For the next General Election, the maximum number of candidates that can be nominated under a Political Party will be 51.

SOURCE: FIJI TV/PACNEWS

31) PNG MP nomination fee hike would hinder women

A participant in Papua New Guinea’s Practice Parliament for Women says hiking the MP nomination fee will prevent many women from running in this year’s general election.

The week long training programme concludes on Monday as Parliament prepares to debate the government’s plan to raise the fee from 300 to 3000 US dollars.

With only three women currently in Parliament out of 111 MPs, the intending candidate for the Gumine Open electorate, Dr Susan Apa, said the government’s plan targets women.

“I think that will hinder women mainly, but I think a lot of men will also be hindered. With a 10,000 kina nomination fee that reduces numbers of intending candidates,” she said.

“But for me personally, if I have to pay that to contest then I am prepared to do that.”

Dr Apa said years of service on a hospital board convinced her she can do more for her community in Parliament.10/3/17 – RNZI

1) http://www.solomonstarnews.com/news/national/12454-suspicious-wealth

BUSINESS

32) Indo-PNG trade drops

March 10, 2017The NationalBusiness
Article Views: 216

THERE has been a progressive decrease in bilateral trade between Indonesia and PNG despite more than K500 million in value of trade recorded last year.
Indonesian Ambassador to PNG Ronald Manik, pictured, told The National that trade between the two countries had decreased by almost 60 per cent on figures five years ago.
“Based on the figures processed by the trade data and information centre, Ministry of Trade of Indonesia, you could see that in the last five years, bilateral trade value between the two countries tend to decrease significantly,” Manik said. “For instance, the value of bilateral trade in 2011 was US$443.3 million (K1.374bn) compared to US$178.9 million (K554.65m) in 2016 which is a decrease of around 60 per cent.
“The similar trend occurred on figures of 2016, which is US$178.9m (K554.65m) compared to US$223.9m (K694.1m) in 2015 or a decrease of around 20 per cent. Likewise, the Indonesia’s trade surplus with PNG in 2016 decreased around 34.2 per cent compared to the surplus in 2015 which stood at US$184.6m (K572.3m).
“Indonesia’s total trade in 2015 recorded a value of US$293b (K877.4b), meanwhile in 2016 the figure was US$280b (K868b), a slight decrease from the previous year.”

33) Bank South Pacific lauded for K643m profit
9:46 pm GMT+12, 08/03/2017, Papua New Guinea

Bank South Pacific (BSP) group chief executive officer Robin Fleming has applauded the group for making a K643.5 million (US$203.1 million) profit last year.

The group profit, which was released last week in the 2016 full-year results, noted the increase in the net profit after tax of  21 per cent.

“This has been a great contribution from every part of the business,” Flemming told a news conference on Monday.

He also gave a highlight on the business factors that contributed to the group’s net profit.

Fleming said the group’s total income was up by 16 per cent which was K1.79 billion (US$565 million).

Total assets went up by 14.5 per cent to K20.8 billion (US$6.56 billion).

“The cost to income ratio improves to 42.9 per cent,” he said.

“The capital adequacy maintained at 23.1 per cent.”

Fleming said loan provision was maintained at 4.9 per cent.

“The return of equity went up 1.8 per cent to 29.6 per cent and a dividend yield of 9.8 per cent based on the current exchange rate,” Fleming added.

With foreign exchange, he said, they managed to increase contribution when Ok Tedi resumed operations.
“One of the underlying thing is that the business is growing,” he said.

Fleming commended all seven countries in the region, noting also that there were challenges affecting the business growth faced in these countries.

“They managed to contribute in terms of their strong loan growth portfolio, incremental impact of Vanuatu business acquisition, significant market shares and other profit contributions by the business,” he added.

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS

34) Introduction of the Fiji kava manual will boost industry
10:01 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, Fiji

The National Kava Standard and Fiji Kava Quality Manual was officially launched in Suva in an effort to improve kava quality and grow exports.

While launching the manual Thursday, Acting Minister for Agriculture Osea Naiqamu says the manual has been launched at the right time given the renewed interest of markets for kava in Europe and the United States.

“We must explore every opportunity to protect and promote Fiji kava as an authentic high quality Fijian products when competition in the international markets.”

Naiqamu says kava producing countries in the Pacific including Fiji struggled in the aftermath of a kava ban imposed by Germany in 2012.

He adds that the ban was later lifted in 2014 and while Fiji’s kava earnings have gradually increased, recovery has been relatively slow.

SOURCE: FBC NEWS/PACNEWS

35) Coconut oil raises livelihoods in Solomon Islands

6:30 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, New Zealand

Kokonut Pacific Solomon Islands (KPSI) is a producer of top grade coconut oil.  It is also part of this year’s Pacific Islands Trade & Invest (PT&I) Pacific Path to Market delegation to Auckland’s Pasifika festival on March 25-26.

PT&I’s Pacific Path to Market adopts a structured approach to helping exporters investigate new markets for their products.  Pasifika is the 3rd stage of the PT&I Pacific Path to Market programme giving businesses an introduction to the New Zealand market.

KPSI will showcase its star product – Organic certified, Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) and 100% coconut oil soaps.

The company has more than 50 producers on its books, across a wide network in the Solomon Islands.  The good news is more than 60 percent of the oil revenue goes back to the villages providing an income for over 5000 people.  In 2016, KPSI won a raft of awards including the Prime Minister’s Business of the Year Award, the Business Contribution to the Community and Exporter of the Year.

KPSI was established by Australian Dr Dan Etherington in 1994 to improve the well-being of the rural populations of tropical islands through the production of premium grade coconut oil and other coconut products.

Dr Etherington learned the process on a remote island of Tuvalu from the people who had discovered how to cold press coconut oil from sun-dried coconut.  He went on to create the Direct Micro Expelling (DME) method of processing coconuts into coconut oil using a cold press.  One of the beauties of the DME method is that producers can turn coconuts into oil within an hour of opening.

The DME solution stands for –

*Direct – quick (oil can be produced in 1 hour of opening the nut) and efficiently expels 85% of the available oil.
*Micro – it can be done in small scales on family sized farms.
*Expelling – the extraction of virgin coconut oil and meal.

KPSI’s company goal is also it’s motto – “Empowering and bringing hope.”

The objective was to revitalise the small holder coconut industries through using modern technology and partnering with local communities, local firms, non-government organisations and Governments to ensure the right support systems are in place.

The introduction of DME processing changed lives through a 5-fold increase in the value of coconut exports compared to copra (ref: kokonutpacific.com.au).

Right from the start Kokonut Pacific has adopted Full and Fair Trade, Fair Share and Triple Bottom line principals (demonstrating care for people, the planet and profitability).

It  works with local firms, non-government organisations (NGOs) and Governments to make sure that the right support systems are in place. The capacity of remote communities to produce DME® extra virgin coconut oil is often far greater than the local market can absorb.  Therefore most of the oil must be exported and in doing so, communities must be prepared for quality control, storage, transport, bulking up and finding buyers. In many cases, these buyers are in other countries so the oil has to be carefully packed and shipped overseas.

A big step forward for the Solomon Islands is gaining full Organic Certification status for the oil. Organic certification status is a great encouragement to the producers and assures customers of the quality of the oil.

KPSI was started in 2004 and is a private limited company registered in Solomon Islands.

SOURCE: PACIFIC PERISCOPE/PACNEWS

36) Solomon Islands showcases cocoa for Pasifika festival

6:27 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, New Zealand

Cocoa is an important export earner for rural communities and small holder farms and their households in the Solomon Islands.

Cathliro Commodities Development Limited (CCDL) is attending Auckland’s Pasifika Festival under the Pacific Islands Trade & Invest (PT&I) Pacific Path to Market programme.

PT&I hosted its Pacific Path to Market programme in the Solomon Islands last year and from the workshops identified a group of companies capable of exporting to New Zealand.

CCDL is a cocoa producing company, locally owned and managed by Diana Yates. The company has been in operation for 6 years.  It has 30 employees. Its main business activity is exporting cocoa beans to Malaysia.

Yates said, the fundamental goal of the company is to provide employment and ultimately improve the livelihood of people in the rural parts of Isabel, Solomon Islands in a sustainable way.

Apart from buying cocoa beans from other farmers in the country, CCDL owns 99 hectares of land, at Garanga, Maringe District in Isabel Province – 20% of which is used for cocoa farming.  The company aims to continue to grow more cocoa and also to diversify into other agricultural and horticultural products. such as, , cassava, piggery, poultry, bananas, pineapples and aloe vera.

Cathliro is also exploring available alternatives to ensure rural development for women.A specific example of this is tapping into the rural Tatamba economic growth centre at Tatamba village, Gao Bugotu Consituency in Isabel,  to develop projects to involve women and including the rural high school dropouts and introducing the populace to sustainable economic activities.

The company has existing facilities in Honiara, that it is planning to turn into a Research Centre for cocoa products development and tropical food security.  It is currently doing desk review on fruit drying techniques and facilities in the country and investigating public-private partnerships to enable it contribute to better lives for Solomon Islanders.

The country produces approximately 5,000 metric tonnes (mt) per year however the industry is still developing.  With 75% of export earnings retained by the producer and 50% of producers are women the cocoa industry provides a livelihood for many involved in its production.

SOURCE: PACIFIC PERISCOPE/PACNEWS

37 ) http://www.solomonstarnews.com/news/national/12453-vendor-salutes-betel-nut-law

38  http://dailypost.vu/news/a-big-day-for-farmers-and-phama/article_85747958-822d-5b93-8efc-2b7f632df901.html

39 )
http://dailypost.vu/news/noble-kava-farmer-wins-first-prize/article_4e1960dc-bcd1-5f67-bf97-e20b4da89a78.html

INFRASTRACTURE

40) $25m investment

Felix Chaudhary
Sunday, March 12, 2017-Fijitimes

THE Fiji Public Service Association will invest $25 million in a three-storey commercial complex in Nadi.

This was announced by general secretary Rajeshwar Singh during the FPSA Western branch annual general meeting in Lautoka yesterday.

“We have engaged an Australian architectural firm to advise and formulate plans for this project, which will cover the freehold property FPSA owns on the Queens Rd in busy Martintar in Nadi,” he said.

“The initial concept calls for a three-level retail, supermarket, residential and office space and an undercover parking area.”

Mr Singh informed more than 200 members who attended the AGM at the Sugar Cane Growers Council conference hall that despite the project being a huge investment, the returns were considerable and worthwhile.

“The national council has weighed all matters regarding the project with great due diligence before giving its approval.

“We will keep you informed periodically of the progress of works as necessary.”

Mr Singh informed the members of other FPSA properties including the Sports City complex in Laucala Bay, Cost U Less building and McDonald’s Laucala Bay, Fiji Gas office in Martintar, Nadi and a two-storey complex at Nasekula Place in Labasa.

LAW&ORDER

41) Foreigners, local charged with bribery, threatening landowners

March 10, 2017The National

TWO foreigners and a local have been charged with 32 counts of bribing and threatening landowners to allow a logging project on their customary land in West New Britain, Assistant Police Commissioner Crimes Victor Isouve said yesterday.
Tyson Tia 39, from Sirom village, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia and Andy Lee Chan, 52, from Silango village, Kuala Lumpa, Malaysia were charged with one count each of deprivation of liberty and bribery while Henry Gorea from Mulwai village, Talasea District, WNB, was charged with 28 counts . They are all out on bail of K2000 each and will appear before the Kimbe District Court on March 20.
Isouve said the three men were accused of coercing, inducing and threatening 17 leaders from Matawat Investment to sign the statutory declaration form to allow a company to conduct logging operations on their customary land in 2015. “The accused with some of the company officials and a lawyer allegedly went and brought the landowners to the company’s office with the assistance of some officers from a Mobile squad at gun point,” Isouve said.
“They were then coerced, threatened and induced to sign the statutory declaration before the company harvested their logs on their customary land. When the chairman and the deputy refused to sign, they allegedly gave them alcohol to drink and paid them K10,000 each. And the landowners while under the influence of liquor signed the statutory declaration.”
Isouve said the landowners chairman Fidelis Lokea was then accused by the company officials for stealing K10,000 and was arrested and charged.
“His case was then thrown out by the Kimbe District Court and later submitted an official complain to the police about being threatened.”

42) Fiji’s toll free domestic violence helpline activated

3:14 pm GMT+12, 08/03/2017, Fiji

Fiji’s first Domestic Violence Helpline was launched Wednesday by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.

The toll free helpline was made possible through the agreement signed between all of the three phone companies in the country and the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation.

The launching was done to mark International Women’s Day with the theme “Be Bold for Change.”

Speaking at the launch Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama says the initiative is designed to encourage Fijian women to be bold-to seize control of their lives, their health and their economic well-being.

Bainimarama also stated this helpline is also meant to protect both women and children who are being victimized by the very adults they should trust to protect, support and nurture them.

“We all know that domestic violence in Fiji is far too common. We are working hard in Government and civil society to end it, but I say that more can be done.  You have heard me say many times—and I will say it again: Domestic violence is a national shame.  Rape is a national shame. And together we must do much more to stop them.

“Let me repeat what I have told Fijian men over and over: Real men don’t beat women. They respect and protect them. Real men don’t rape women. They respect a woman’s right to say no. And real men certainly don’t abuse children, a heinous crime that warrants the strongest punishment,” said Bainimarama.

The Prime Minister is calling on men to join him to champion this rallying call against domestic violence and its destructive effect on our Fijian society.

“I call on men to join me to champion this rallying call against domestic violence and its destructive effect on our Fijian society.  I call on men who truly stand for non-violence to use every opportunity they have to speak out against domestic violence. I call on our community organisations and religious groups to rally their members against domestic violence. I call on every Fijian to reject any tolerance for domestic violence or those who are responsible for it. Domestic violence is not a problem for women; it is a problem for us all because it demeans us all if we do nothing to stop it,” he said.

Women who may fall victims to domestic abuse are urged to call 1560  for assistance.

The 3rd National Women’s Expo that will held in June was also launched during the event.

“The economic empowerment of women is part of my government’s greater goal of reducing poverty through increased entrepreneurship and private sector-led growth.

“We cannot pretend to give women economic power if we cannot lift the burden of fear and physical powerlessness from their shoulders. A woman who must always look over her shoulder for her attacker will be ill-equipped to look ahead to her economic future.

So, like the fight against domestic violence, the National Women’s Expo, which my Government is funding again this year, is a part of an overall, long-term effort to empower women. We empower women by helping them secure the means to be independent and to have a voice. Economic power can be a very loud voice, and we are most happy to hear it in the alto and soprano range.  It is only right, then, that this year’s National Women’s Expo will run under the theme “Be Empowered. Be the Change.”  It is a recognition of the capacity of women as agents of change in our society,” said Bainimarama.

Meanwhile, seventy-two percent of Fijian women experience one or more types of violence from their husbands or partners and is the highest recorded in the region.

This was confirmed by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Mereseini Vuniwaqa, while delivering her speech during the Elimination of Violence Against Children forum .

Vuniwaqa says it’s a shame and disgrace that the statistics of violence against women in Fiji is so high

“The survey also highlighted that women were beaten during pregnancies and raped by their husbands or partners after physical abuse. In more recently received statistics from the Fiji Police Force, in the year 2016 .1904 cases of physical violence and 599 cases of sexual offenses against women have been reported.”

International Women’s Day was seen as an opportunity to stand together and fight against gender based violence as well as demand equality…..

SOURCE: FIJI TV/ FBC NEWS/PACNEWS

43) Unaisi Vuniwaqa appointed Deputy Police Commissioner of UN Mission in South Sudan

9:57 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, Fiji

Fiji’s Assistant Commissioner of Police Unaisi Vuniwaqa has been appointed Deputy Police Commissioner of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan.

Police Commissioner Brigadier General Sitiveni Qiliho said ACP Vuniwaqa’s appointment further solidifies Fiji’s foot prints in the upper echelons of the United Nations Police, and this is the highest level appointment since the Fiji Police Force first involvement with the UN for over 30 years period.

Previously the highest appointment made with regards to an officer from the Fiji Police Force was for the current Chief Administration Officer (CAO) and Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Itendra Nair, who was appointed UNMISS Chief of Staff for a period of two years in 2013 to 2015.

“The news of ACP Vuniwaqa’s appointment augurs well not only for our women officers but all women in our beloved nation. This will also open up a number of opportunities for future engagements with the United Nations.

As we continue to commemorate the achievements and contributions of our women at various International Women’s Day celebrations around the country, the news of ACP Vuniwaqa’s appointment is sure to provide further impetus for girls and women that anything is achievable.” said Qiliho

“ACP Vuniwaqa’s achievement will be etched in the Fiji Police Force’s history books and the institution is feeling a massive sense of euphoria as we celebrate her appointment. We will be supporting her in every way possible so that she is able to excel in her duties during the duration of her appointment.”

The Police Commissioner adds ACP Vuniwaqa’s achievement will be etched in the Fiji Police Force’s history books and the institution is feeling a massive sense of excitement as they celebrate her appointment.

SOURCE: FIJI TV/PACNEWS

MINING,AGRICULTURE,TOURISM

44) Indonesia ready to acquire majority in West Papua miner

10 March 2017
Indonesia is reported to have set aside US$2.96 billion dollars to acquire shares in PT Freeport Indonesia, which mines for copper and gold in Papua.

The Jakarta Post says the company is required to divest at least 51 percent of its shares under Indonesia’s new mining regulations.

The fund would be used to buy just over 40 percent of Freeport’s shares as Indonesia already holds 9.36 percent of the mining giant’s stock.

The government and Freeport have been negotiating several issues including the conversion of Freeport’s contract agreement from a Contract of Work to a special mining license, which would include the share divestment and a permit to export concentrate.

For the share acquisition, Jakarta is reported to be sourcing the money from the state-owned enterprises’ pension fund.http://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/326347/indonesia-ready-to-acquire-majority-in-west-papua-miner

45) Frieda River mine set to start operations

4:09 pm GMT+12, 09/03/2017, Papua New Guinea

The giant Frieda River mine in West Sepik is now 60 percent ready of becoming a reality with the Papua New Guinea Government waiting to issue the mining license for the project to start after few technical issues are sorted out, says Aitape Lumi MP and Minister for Treasury Patrick Pruaitch.

“Frieda River is 60 per cent reality now, we are ready to issue the license. We just need to work through with the technical people to on how they will dump the raw waste.”

“The company has put an application to convert mine waste into power generation system , but the State does not have the capacity so it is doing its best to hire people to give the best advice on how we can look at that and we can give the okay for that 40 per cent to be completed, for 100 per cent to give the mining license for project to start,” Pruaitch said.

Pruaitch said this at the opening of the first ever Frieda Mine Landowners Forum in Port Moresby.

Pruaitch urged the people to work together and put together their benefits package for the National Government to consider during the project negotiation.

“Let us not send mix signals, it will give opportunity for company to go divide a few LLGs and MP’s to start the mine with the least cost possible so we can bring in impacted development for that region,

“I believe that is a big project that will transform Sandaun Province and Sepik region including Madang. This project will spread benefits across the region.”

“I want initial support from landowners because if we don’t have a project, we will not talk about benefits. We have to have a project, we have to get a leg in and another one in than we can be able to negotiate for the benefits. If we are not supporting the project than we can be standing here as leaders driving a lost cost, we must have a project, we must have shareholding understanding with impacted landowners, we must have understanding with the Telefomin district, we must have that understanding with the Telefomin LLG and sandaun Provincial Government.”

“I want Frieda mine which is going to be the first mining for the next government to use LNG precedent to allocate these benefits.”

Meanwhile, Frieda Mine landowners have come together to discuss issues including benefits for negotiations with the National Government and developer PanAust when Frieda Mine project comes into development.

Member for Telefomin Solan Mirisim who initiated the first ever landowner forum to discuss issues surrounding the Frieda River Project, the Political Leaders from the West Sepik Province. MRA and stake holders emphasised on how best they can work hand in hand and support the Company, landowners and the State to kick start the Project once the SM application is granted.

“I stand up here representing the views, the cries and the excitement of over 50,000 people from Telefomin District, including people from ward 21, particularly the seven impact Villages within the vicinity of Special Mine Lease area.”

Mirisim said Telefomin is the host District of the Frieda River Project and is one of the most remotest districts in the country that has no road link, only mode of transport is by Air and the four LLG are all accessible by third level airline and it is very expensive District to deliver goods and services to our people on time.

“Frieda River Project is the only Project in this country that has taken over 40 years of exploration after exploration, I must take this time to thank many exploration companies who have worked on the Frieda River Project for many years to this time, it is long time awaiting for our People in Frieda River and Telefomin District.”

“I would like to thank the Highlands Pacific and the PanAust for taking the project closer to fruition. One final step to finish and we will have a world class Mine that will be mined and developed in our District which will no doubt create prime opportunity to impact and transform the lives of our people through employment, training, economic empowerment, contracts and all kinds.

“We want to see a Pathway that will improve our way of life, a pathway that will change the areas of Infrastructure, a pathway that will see a society transformed with Improved Social and Health Indicators”.

SOURCE: POST COURIER/PACNEWS

46) Mine reaches milestone

March 9, 2017The National
Article Views: 317

PORGERA gold mine in Enga reached a milestone this month, achieving 20 million ounces (oz.) in gold production since the start of operations in 1990, according to the company.
The mine is a joint venture operation between Barrick Gold Corporation, Zijin Mining Group and Mineral Resources Enga (MRE) Limited.
The PJV processing department attained the production on Monday after 7044 ounces were produced for the particular day.
General manager operations Damian Shaw on behalf of the management commended efforts of those who had been involved with the operation since the first pour in 1990 and those who were still with the operation.
“This has been a great effort by everyone, the employees, the community, the government and all other stakeholders,” Shaw said.
“To those who work behind the scene to make it possible to achieve this result, congratulations.
“Not many mines meet 20 million ounces…..it is a rare achievement. Porgera still has a long life so let’s get another 20 million.”
The 20 million plus oz. derived from more than 143 million tonnes of ore that were mined in both the open pit and underground since start of production.
Production superintendent (Anawe) Anthon Pakyo, acknowledged contributions from all of PJV site departments, adding that there had been challenges along the way but as a team, the site had achieved this.
“For the processing team, this is a real milestone achievement as we all know it has been challenging to get this far,” Pakyo said.
“We can hope for some more million ounces in the future through our continued team efforts.”

WOMAN,YOUTH,CHILD

47 ) http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/tokpisin/2017-03-09/solomon-islands-iwd-hemi-bigfala-sakses/1656524

48) ‘Abused’ children back with parents

Mere Naleba
Sunday, March 12, 2017-Fijitimes

A TOTAL of 897 children who were allegedly abused have been placed back with their parents, statistics from the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation revealed.

The statistics released during the ministry’s Fiji Multi Year Workplan Mid-Year Review, showed that the ministry recorded a total of 1077 child abuse cases.

Out of this figure, 897 children were in the “child is safe with parent” category. The statistics showed 120 children had been placed with relatives, 23 were placed in other care, 16 were admitted, 10 were being counselled, seven were placed in social welfare residential homes, three had been detained and one child was assisted financially by the ministry.

Women’s Minister Mereseini Vuniwaqa said the ministry was working with other relevant stakeholders in ensuring every Fijian had a role in protecting children.

“The Children’s Symposium, that’s a new initiative under the current budget, it is the first time we are sitting with children to tell us what they think is important.

“I’ll give you an example in the Children’s Symposium last week in Labasa, the children came up and said that during the holidays, there isn’t anything to do, it’s boring here, everything happens in Suva,” Mrs Vuniwaqa said.

SPORT

49) NRL starts pre-season

Eroni Tuinuku
Sunday, March 12, 2017-Fijitimes

THE Fiji National Rugby League (FNRL) Vodafone Cup Pre-Season competition continued its second round yesterday at Bidesi Grounds in Suva yesterday.

Fiji National Rugby League operations manager Joeli Savou said they were impressed with the performance of teams.

FNRL East development officer, Jone Wesele said the pre-season competition would be an advantage for coaches and trainers.

“The pre-season competition is a platform for the upcoming season. It is where coaches and trainers decide and choose their squad for the upcoming rugby league season,” said Wesele.

Yesterday’s results:

Army 24-8 Nabua Broncos, Kinoya 14-12 USP, Police 12-8 Topline, Nadera Panthers 18-14 Davuilevu Knights.

50a) Fiji beats Wales 34-19

ELENOA BASELALA in Vancouver, BC
Sunday, March 12, 2017- Fijitimes

Update: 9:22AM FIJI scored a comfortable 34-19 victory over Wales in their first match of the HSBC Canada 7s at BC Place Stadium, Vancouver this morning Fiji time.

Fiji took the lead 24-7 at hald time with two tries from Kalione Nasoko and one each from Alivereti Veitokani and Mesulame Kunavula.

In the second half, Fiji scored another 10 points with two tries from Nemani Nagusa and Waisea Nacuqu.

Wales scored 12 points in the half from tries to Luke Morgani and Ben Roach.

Fiji meets Samoa in its second match of Pool B.

50b ) http://dailypost.vu/vanuatu_sports/van-goes-to-marketplace/article_b085da5a-b04d-5ad0-9e57-17a0e961a8d1.html

50c ) http://dailypost.vu/vanuatu_sports/vanuatu-cricket-and-vanuatu-family-health-association-sign-partnership-agreement/article_5a18695f-503a-5a6e-b3f0-8a15ab09da69.html

50d) Brumbies stop Force

Super Rugby
Sunday, March 12, 2017

The Brumbies had a resurgent final 20 minutes to beat the Western Force 25-17 in Canberra on Friday.

The two-time champions looked like the dominant side throughout the first half until the final minutes when Force captain Heath Tessmann barged over the line to close the gap.

After Brumbies fly-half Wharenui Hawera missed a slew of kicks, the Force crept back into the game after another try in the second half and some successful kicks.

But after Force lock Ross Haylett-Petty was given a yellow card in the 70th minute, the momentum switched and tries from Kyle Godwin and Robbie Abel saved the game for the home side. It’s the Brumbies first win of the tournament after losses to the Crusaders in the first round.

w: www.voiceofmelanesia.com

Leave a Reply

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