Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1110 ( Monday 13 July )


1) Melanesian market women growing their skills – Thousands of women market vendors in Fiji, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands are growing their economic empowerment opportunities along with their crops. The UN Women’s Market for Change initiative has helped set up associations for women market vendors in all three countries with Vanuatu the latest to register their Silae Vanua Association. UN Women’s economic empowerment specialist Preeya Leli says the majority of market vendors in Melanesia are women.

2) PNG PM Praises Stronger PNG-EU Relations

Coincides with end of EU ambassador post

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, July 10, 2015) – Prime Minister Peter O’Neill expressed his appreciation of European Union Ambassador Martin Dihm’s efforts, saying he has seen increased trade and investments and cultural relations with Europe recently.

Dihm will complete his posting to PNG in July after four years during which time O’Neill said relations between the country and the European Union were strengthened on several fronts.

“During Ambassador Dihm’s posting to Papua New Guinea, we have seen an increase in trade and investments and a strengthening of cultural relations with Europe,” he said.

“I thank Ambassador Dihm for his contribution in this increasing engagement with Europe.”

O’Neill said there had been sensitive issues between PNG and EU in recent years, and the EU mission in Port Moresby worked with the Government to overcome challenges.

“The implementation of the Interim Economic Partnership Agreement and the dialogue on compliance with the EU regulation on fishing are progressing very well.

“The IEPA has created more than 30,000 direct jobs, many of these being for women, as well as many more indirect jobs.

“The ongoing dialogue covering illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing continues to move forward and we expect to have further positive news soon. Papua New Guinea will continue to widen and deepen the list of tradable goods that we export to Europe.

The National

3) GJP i kontestem Luganville Munisipal Kaonsel eleksen 

Olgeta -

GJP i putum 15 kandidet blong kontestem eleksen blong Luganville Munisipol Kaonsel.

West Ward

North Ward

East Ward

Central Ward

Yu save luk ol posta blong olgeta kandiet ia long ples ia.

GJP i gat 6 mein polisi we hemi stap kampen from long eleksen ia:

1. Mekem se Munisipol Kaonsel i yusum mane blong yumi long wan stret fasen. Stretem administresen sistem blong Kaonsel. Katem ol uneseseri spending. Lukaotem rod blong mekem moa mane i kam insaed long Kaonsel blong leftemap sevis diliveri.
2. Putumaot pablik ripot blong spending blong komuniti fand blong Kaonsel evri yia.
3. Komplitim wok blong diklerem ol pablik spes mo ol grin spes long evri eria blong taon mo komplitim wok blong biutifikesen.
4. Protektem mo promotem ol ni-Vanuatu bisnis.
5. Wok wetem Gavman blong putum niufala wota sos mo wota manejmen sistem.
6. Leftemap waste manejmen sistem blong kontrolem doti.

Mi wetem MP Alfred Maoh i stap givhan wetem kampen tim long wik ia long Luganville.
Eleksen bae hemi stap long Tyusde nekis wik 21 Julae.

Plis sherem infomesen blong ol kandidet blong yumi wetem ol famli mo fren long Luganville, mo askem olgeta blong vot GJP!

Ta, MP Ralph Regenvanu…
4a) Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 13 July 2015

by bobmakin

  • Radio Vanuatu tells us today that next month the Government will hold a round-table conference with development partners concerning the recovery after cyclone Pam, and plans for the next 24 months. Foreign Minister Vohor advised accordingly when meeting foreign officials from other countries recently.
  • Radio Vanuatu also had the Opposition calling on the Government to maintain the pace for political reform instead of making threats to media freedom by controlling freedom of expression. If such laws involving police action against freedom of association had been in place, the Opposition would have used them long ago, Daily Post points out, when the then-Opposition was plotting the overthrow of the Natuman Government.
  • Mamas of the Manples Market are pleased to be back now that Au Bon Marché has improved their market sales area near ABM Manples. They say they are delighted to be back.
  • Daily Post also points out how 14 July 1980 was the date on which the Vanuatu pre-Independence administration led by Walter Lini entered into discussions with PNG PM Julius Chan concerning intervention in the state of rebellion in the New Hebrides. The Vemerana rebellion seemed about to upset the democratically elected government’s plans for Independence on 30 July, a fortnight later.

4b) Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 11 July 2015

by bobmakin

  • John William Timakata has been endorsed as Acting Public Prosecutor to the end of this month by the Judicial Services Commission. The newly appointed Public Prosecutor, Josiah Naigulevu, will take up his duties on 1 August. Many high profile cases involving bribery are being prosecuted by Timakata and the Judicial Services Commission points out the independence from government of the Public Prosecutor.
  • Both Saturday papers publish as front page the suggestion that the fire which guttered Vanuatu Treasures’ warehouse this week was deliberately lit. The main door to the building was allegedly open. There was no electricity supply there and there were no power points in the warehouse. Management of the business has been in the hands of one who has this week been reported as a victim, albeit compensated, in a court case involving a nuisance element.
  • The Media Association of Vanuatu points out to the Prime Minister that his call for more outside media regulation is inappropriate, there being adequate means to deal with usual complaints already. MAV is consulting with a view to setting up a media body for self-regulatory purposes.
  • Today’s Daily Post observes there are always many questions which arise in discussions by Lapita scholars as presently during this week in the 8th International Lapita Conference at USP. There seem to be presumptions made both as regards the data used and interpretations of results one participant observed. Never-the-less the conference provided a great deal of information useful to the scholar and of interest to the participants.
  • PM Kilman is suggesting Government MPs are being harassed by Opposition MPs,Daily Post reveals. Kilman says his government is forced to request police intervention.
  • The Independent says says the minister responsible for fisheries is putting right various matters which have gone wrong in departments associated with fishing activities. Never-the-less, not everything has gone crazy. Daily Post is able to point to an official Vanuatu Fisheries Observer testifying to a US Federal Court against the illegal activities of a US purse seiner. Congratulations observer Jino Suaki of Malekula.


5) 24-year-old dies in brawl in Tonga capital

13 July 2015

A 24 year old Tonga man died on Saturday night after a violent brawl in the streets of the capital, Nuku’alofa.

Photo: files

The acting Police Commissioner, Tevita Fifita, has told Radio Tonga they have arrested a 25 year old man who is facing a murder charge.

The dead man, who was found by police lying in the street in the centre of the city, is believed to have been stabbed.RNZI

6) Doctor and ward shortage at American Samoa hospital

13 July 2015

There’s a severe doctor shortage in clinics and wards for general medicine at the LBJ Hospital in American Samoa.

One doctor collapsed on the job last week after working extended hours without rest.

Another is taking leave that was long planned.

This leaves just two doctors on duty in the Medical Ward and Clinic.

Late last week Governor Lolo Moliga met with management of the hospital and the Department of Health to discuss the doctor shortage.

As a result of that meeting, the Community Health Center in Tafuna will be kept open longer.

The center which is usually opened from 8 am to four pm will now open into the evening.

The public is being urged to used this clinic and the others at Leone and Amouli while the hospital doctor shortage continues.RNZI

7) Cooks parliament clerk clarifies House of Ariki meeting impasse

13 July 2015

An impasse at the Cook Islands parliament last week has been put down to a miscommunication between parliament’s staff and members of the House of Ariki.

The group, which includes the high chiefs from various islands meets at the Parliament every year to provide feedback on policy issues such as permanent residence and preserving traditions.

The clerk of the House of Ariki, Tupuna Rakanui, said the group was barred from the chamber for nearly two hours, until they called MP, Nandi Glassie, who intervened.

However, the acting clerk of the parliament, Helen Maunga, says the issue was all due to a misunderstanding, and the chamber had not been booked for the meeting.RNZI


8a ) Marshall Islands to showcase ‘climate-proof’ building

13 July 2015U

The Marshall Islands’ first ‘climate-proof’ building is being showcased today as part of an annual conference on climate projects.

The Pacific Power Association meeting will also involve a tour of the newly-installed system that uses waste heat to power Majuro’s power plant.

The executive director of the PPA, Andrew Daka, says the waste heat conversion equipment has been used in developed countries but most utilities in the region have not seen it in operation.

The Marshalls Energy Company says it will save the Marshall Islands nearly 400 thousand litres of fuel a year, reduce the amount of carbon emitted by 10,000 tons over 10 years, and will generate 194 kilowatts of power daily.RNZI

8b) Nauru MPs To Spend Another Week In Custody Awaiting Lawyer

Fallout from purported connection to anti-gov rally

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, July 13, 2015) – Two opposition MPs on Nauru are spending another week in custody as they continue to battle for legal representation.The MPs, former president Sprent Dabwido and Squire Jeremiah, have been charged in connection with an anti-government protest outside parliament last month.

They appeared in court on Friday for their second attempt to secure bail, but the men do not have access to a lawyer on the island.

A pleader, who provides some legal support, returns to the island today, but a source on Nauru says the MPs have rejected his representation.

Mr Dabwido and Mr Jeremiah want a lawyer who is based in Australia to represent them, but the Nauru Government continues to refuse him a visa.

They have asked the Supreme Court to rule on their right to a lawyer of their choice, and will appear in court on Friday for their next bail hearing.

Radio New Zealand International


9) Brèves du Pacifique – lundi 13 juillet 2015

Posté à 13 July 2015, 16:20 AEST

Élodie Largenton

  • C’est une nouvelle semaine que deux députés de l’opposition vont passer en détention provisoire à Nauru. 
Sprent Dabwido et Squire Jeremiah ont été arrêtés à la suite d’une manifestation devant le Parlement, il y a plus de trois semaines. Les deux hommes politiques sont obligés d’assurer seuls leur défense, pour le moment. Ils souhaitent être représentés par un avocat basé en Australie, mais le gouvernement de Nauru lui refuse un visa.
  •  L’Australie risque-t-elle d’être entraînée dans un conflit régional autour des îles de la mer de Chine orientale ? Dans un rapport publié aujourd’hui, des chercheurs australiens et américains estiment que la Chine a désormais le pouvoir d’atteindre l’Australie, avec des missiles de longue-portée et une force navale de plus en plus puissante. Mais le Premier ministre australien assure n’être pas du tout inquiet : « Je préfèrerais mettre l’accent sur la force de notre amitié avec la Chine plutôt que sur ce qui pourrait arriver dans de très nombreuses années », a réagi Tony Abbott. Depuis une semaine, 30 000 soldats australiens et américains participent à des exercices militaires dans le nord de l’Australie.
  • Des centaines d’Australiens sont bloqués en Indonésie depuis plusieurs jours à cause d’une éruption volcanique.Les vols au départ de cinq aéroports, dont celui de Bali, ont été annulés par mesure de précaution : le nuage de cendres qui s’échappe du volcan Raung perturbe la navigation. Or, cette panne survient en pleine période de vacances scolaires en Australie, et l’Indonésie est l’une des destinations préférées des Australiens – ils sont plus de 900 000 à s’y rendre chaque année.
  • Aux Îles Cook, les autorités craignent que l’épidémie de chikungunya ne redémarre lors des célébrations des 50 ans de la constitution. Les festivités commencent dans dix jours et de nombreux visiteurs sont attendus pour l’occasion. Tout est mis en place pour les prévenir et les inciter à se protéger en portant des vêtements longs et en utilisant des répulsifs, indique la directrice des services de santé publique. L’épidémie de chikungunya a atteint un pic en avril dernier, avec 73 nouveaux cas recensés en une semaine, mais elle est aujourd’hui sous contrôle.
  • Aux Samoa américaines, c’est la dengue qui inquiète les autorités. Une troisième personne, une femme d’une vingtaine d’années, est décédée la semaine passée après avoir été infectée par le virus.


10) Call for Pacific to lead on disaster preparedness

13 July 2015

Pacific foreign ministers say Pacific countries must lead national and regional efforts to support disaster preparedness and build resilience to disasters.

Last week’s meeting under the auspices of the Pacific Islands Forum in Sydney called on international partners, regional organisations, the private sector and NGOs to support government-led processes for disaster-related assistance.

The Ministers say investment in multi-hazard early warning systems, transport and telecommunications infrastructure are cornerstones to enhanced resilience.

A regional response to the risks associated with disasters and climate change was also discussed through the development of the Strategy for Climate and Disaster Resilience in the Pacific.RNZI


11) Greece bailout: Alexis Tsipras accepts 86-billion-euro bailout from eurozone leaders after 17 hours of talks

Updated 13 July 2015, 19:40 AEST

Greece agrees to tough reforms in return for a three-year bailout worth up to 86 billion euros after marathon talks with eurozone leaders in Brussels.

(Credit: Reuters) 

Greece has agreed to tough reforms after marathon talks with eurozone leaders in return for a three-year bailout worth up to 86 billion euros ($129 billion).

European Council president Donald Tusk said eurozone leaders reached a unanimous deal to offer Greece a third bailout and keep it in the euro after 17 hours of talks.

“One can say that we have ‘agreement’. Leaders have agreed in principle that they are ready to start negotiations on an ESM (European Stability Mechanism) program, which in other words means continued support for Greece,” Mr Tusk said in a statement.

“There are strict conditions to be met.


“The approval of several national parliaments, including the Greek parliament, is now needed for negotiations on an ESM program to formally begin.

“Nevertheless, the decision gives Greece a chance to get back on track with the support of European partners.

“It also avoids the social, economic and political consequences that a negative outcome would have brought.”

This will be Greece’s third rescue program in five years, which will be funded by the European Stability Mechanism, the EU’s bailout fund.

Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras emerged from the talks saying his government “faced difficult decisions”.

Greece drama unfolds

June 28: 
Greek banks are closed, withdrawal limits are set to 60 euros ($89) a day

July 5: 
Greek voters reject terms of a bailout proposition with 61.31 per cent voting “No”, boosting prime minister Alexis Tsipras at the negotiating table

July 6: 
Yanis Varoufakis resigns as Greek finance minister to improve relations with eurozone creditor countries, and is replaced by Euclid Tsakalotos, who has been steering talks with EU-IMF creditors

July 7:
Eurozone finance ministers meet in Brussels but no proposal reached European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker, who is not in favour of Greece leaving the EU, warns a Grexit scenario has been prepared “in detail”

July 8:
Mr Tsipras is greeted by boos and cheers at the European parliament, says Greece will submit “credible” reform plans and wants to prevent a “divided Europe”. His speech draws a mix of boos and cheers from European MPs

July 11: 
Greek parliament backs new reform plan, submits proposals to the EU for consideration

July 12:
Eurozone finance ministers meet for talks, planned EUCO summit delayed

July 13:
Greece agrees to tough reforms in return for a three-year bailout worth up to 86 billion euros


“We took the responsibility for the decision to avert the most extreme plans by conservative circles in Europe,” he said.

“We averted a plan of a financial choking and banking collapse.”

He said a growth package of 35 billion euros and debt restructuring “will make Grexit a thing of the past”.

European shares surged on the news of the deal which prevented Greece from crashing out of the European single currency.

Greece applied last week for a third program from the eurozone’s bailout fund after its previous bailout expired on June 30, leaving it without international financial assistance for the first time in years.

Greek banks have been closed for nearly two weeks and there were fears they were about to run dry due to a lack of extra funding by the European Central Bank.

This would mean Athens would have had to print its own currency and effectively leave the euro.

Athens infuriated its creditors with actions including a surprise referendum on July 5 in which Greeks overwhelmingly rejected previous bailout terms offered by its creditors.



12a ) CWM Hospital maternity ward extension currently underway 
– The extension of the CWM maternity ward is currently underway. CWM Acting Medical Superintendent, Doctor James Fong says the government has provided $3 million for civil works this year to continue the extension of the hospital. Doctor Fong says this extension will see the removing of car parks, reducing the visiting space for relatives and also road reconstruction.

12b ) Villagers celebrate launch of sea ambulance
The National, Monday July 13th, 2015

Koil Island on the east of Wewak in East Sepik came alive with colour, singsing groups, choirs and displays to launch the million-kina sea ambulance and two floating jetties on Friday.
The jetties are for the far-flung Schoutern Islands off Wewak.
Wewak MP Jim Simatab launched the facilities  much to the delight of the islanders, who have been struggling to access health care and treatment at the Koil Island Health Centre.
The centre, run by the Seventh- day Adventist Church, will take charge of the boat to conduct its mobile clinics and assist in the evacuation of the sick from Biem, Kadawar, Ruprup, Wei, Vokeo and Koil Islands.
Officer-in-charge of the Koil Health Centre Esther Kange thanked Simatab, Wewak district chief executive officer Ricky Wobar and the board of directors for the sea ambulance.
Kange said their regular mother and child health clinics and other outreach programmes using small dinghies had been dictated by sea  and weather conditions.
“With this new ambulance, I will now be able to spend a week each month conducting clinics on all the islands,” Kange said.
“The boat will help in bringing very sick people from the islands to the health centre and take them back home when they are discharged.
“We used to have patients who waited for days and weeks to get back home,” Kange said.
Simatab, who is the Correctional Service Minister, said he would use part of the K2 million provided by the Government for health this year to add to the existing facilities – a TB and HIV/AIDS ward, a labour ward, septic toilets and solar lights.
He said Wewak district was partnering churches to deliver health services and thanked the Seventh-day Adventist Church for its commitment.
Simatab said a similar sea ambulance would be delivered to the Wewak Islands of Mushu, Kairiru, Wallis and Tarawai.

MELANESIAN ( Wantok/Itaukei/Man ples+ ) – LAND,  CUSTOM (KASTOM)

13) Reviving i-Taukei traditional practices – The Ministry of i-Taukei Affairs has been collecting information from villages and provinces about indigenous culture and tradition unique to those areas. It is hoped the cultural mapping exercise will help protect the rich and diverse traditional practices from various parts of the country. Permanent Secretary Savenaca Kaunisela says some villagers have very little knowledge of their indigenous ceremonies, dialects and heritage sites.


14) Vanuatu media assoc says govt control not needed

13 July 2015

The Media Association of Vanuatu says the Government’s proposed curbs on media are excessive and unneccessary.

The new Sato Kilman led Government is proposing new media laws to control what it calls unbalanced and unfair reporting in both the mainstream and social media.

It has raised concerns of stories focussing on political instability in the country and the government’s position on West Papua’s bid for membership of the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

A draft of the proposed media laws is expected to be made public this week before it is put before parliament next week.

The Media Association says there are already legal avenues to deal with any issues.

It also says setting up a media disciplinary council would be preferable to a government controlled regulatory body.RNZI

15) Fiji media decree amendment may mean more freedom – The Fijian Media Association says it’s hoped an amendment to the Media Industry Development Decree will bring about more freedom for journalists. Under the amendment, individual journalists are spared fines not exceeding up to 500 USD ($1,000 FJD/$471 USD). However, media organizations, their editors and publishers, and corporate bodies are still liable to heavy monetary fines or imprisonment terms, or both. The president of the Fijian Media Association, Ricardo Morris, says this is a step forward, as it means ordinary journalists don’t have the prospect of a fine hanging over their head.

 16) Fiji TV Explores Partnership Options For SKY Pacific
By Online Editor
00:47 am GMT+12, 13/07/2015, Fiji

Fiji Television Limited has signed non-disclosure agreements with Digicel and four other companies to explore options for its SKY Pacific arm.

Fiji Television Limited board director, Nouzab Fareed said SKY Pacific has big potential and need a strong partner.

“We need a strong medium and a strong platform to take it to the next level so that is the purpose why we are doing that,” he said.

The other companies besides Digicel are a mix of local and foreign companies.

So the question is whether Fiji Television is selling off its SKY Pacific arm or not?

Fareed says: “No. It is basically an exploration.

“They explore and see what value we can add to SKY Pacific. Because as you know we have close to 30,000 SKY Pacific subscribers out of which 23,000 is out-sourced.

“There is a lot of potential for Fiji to go to the next level. Definitely we need a strategic plan so that is why we signed the non-disclosure agreement.”

Last week, Fiji’s Attorney-General and Minister for Communication Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum moved the amendment to the Media Decree, which effectively allows foreigners to buy into pay television or become a strategic partner as long as that service does not provide any local content.

The non-disclosure agreement will allow Digicel and the other companies to obtain information about SKY Pacific.

The information cannot be made public by the companies but based on the information; they can make an offer for the type of partnership they are proposing.



17) Top award for Fiji Surf Co

Geraldine Panapasa
Monday, July 13, 2015

CONSIDERING the thousands of surf schools and companies around the world, the country’s very own Fiji Surf Co has been recognised as one of the best in the business after receiving high commendations from travel site Trip Advisor.

Fiji Surf School, under the arm of Fiji Surf Co, was recently awarded a certificate of excellence by the popular review website for travellers.

Fiji Surf Co’s Ian Ravouvou Muller said this was the first time for them to receive recognition from Trip Advisor, which was regarded as a top review site for travellers to express their appreciation and grievances about products or services.

“Trip advisor has been giving out these awards over the last five years or so and we are stoked to have been recognised — it’s a huge milestone for us and Fijian surfing as a whole,” he told this newspaper.

“We started Fiji Surf Co 20 years ago as the first local surf company from the back yard of my house with literally no start-up capital. No bank gave us any loan as surfing was so new and nobody believed in it.

“I’m a qualified aircraft engineer so went back into aviation to do part time work and started VSL — Viti Surf Legend (as it was known back then) from my back yard selling surf equipment, doing surfboard repairs and teaching myself and others to surf.”FIJITIMES


18) Authorities prepare food relief in storm-affected Solomons

The Solomon Islands National Disaster Management Office is gearing up to provide food relief following heavy rain in the region.

Wind and rain from Tropical cyclone Raquel caused damage through most of the country’s provinces earlier this month, affecting the welfare of about 10 thousand people.

Teams are currently visiting the affected areas to assess the extent of the damage.

The director of the National Disaster Management Office, Loti Yates, says most of the damage is to the food and agriculture sector.

We can see from the initial information that we have that major food relief is a must following confirmation of damages by the assessment teams. The first two or three weeks will be ok because people will be harvasting what they can from their gardens. It’s after three weeks onwards that they start to feel the impact of root crops rotting away and that is when food shortage will be felt.

Loti Yates says plans are in place to provide emergency relief and the NDMO is just waiting on government funding.RNZI

19) Fiji assures Kiribati of support as climate changes

By Online Editor
00:53 am GMT+12, 13/07/2015, Kiribati

Fiji has reiterated its offer to provide the people of Kiribati with a permanent home if their nation is affected by climate change.

In a congratulatory message to the President of Kiribati, Anote Tong on their 37th Independence Day anniversary, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama said the people of Kiribati should not fear being climate change refugees.

“Our door will always be open to you. And the spirit of Kiribati will continue to burn brightly in the hearts of its people for generations to come,” he said.

“You can be sure that Fijians will stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Kiribati in our joint effort to secure binding cuts in carbon emissions from the industrialised nations at the forthcoming World Climate Summit in Paris, said PM Bainimarama.



20) Gold Ridge mine: Toxic tailings dam on the brink of overflow; environmentalists fear mass contamination

Updated 13 July 2015, 18:20 AEST
By Michael Walsh and staff

As heavy rain continues to fall in the Solomon Islands following Tropical Cyclone Raquel last week, fears the Gold Ridge mine’s toxic tailings dam will overflow are starting to intensify.

The local government declared the area a disaster zone, but experts fear hardly enough precautions are being taken to prevent looming disaster to surrounding communities.

The Gold Ridge tailings dam contains millions of tonnes of hazardous chemicals like cyanide and arsenic, and was purportedly not designed to accommodate overstrain.

An overflow would heavily contaminate the water supplies for the many people living downstream from the site whose livelihood depends on the same water supply..

The damn now sits at 20 centimetres below maximum capacity.

Lawrence Makili, the Earth Island Institute’s Solomon Islands director, said while some landowners were aware of the rising situation, the majority were not even aware anything was happening or the danger they potentially faced.

“Only those who are aware of the risk or the dangers of what is going to happen are preparing at the moment,” Mr Makili said.

He said the majority of those living around the mining dam were rural and farming communities who live directly off of the same systems of water.

A mass contamination would be catastrophic, and as of yet, there has been no major precautions taken outside of the announcement that the dam might overflow.

Australian miner Saint Barbara sold off the mine to the Gold Ridge company in May, after production was suspended for over a year in the midst of disputes over rejected recommendations that the polluted water needs to be released.

Part of the handover deal entailed that contamination issues would be dealt with, but Mr Maliki said nothing has been done since.

“Nothing as such is happening at the moment,” he said, adding that no experts had been sent to the site to perform assessments, create awareness, or put evacuation plans in place.

Due to independent campaigning, a few farmers have relocated, he said, but those people constitute a minority.

While Mr Maliki fears that government inaction might be due to a lack of means, he maintains that given the direness of situation, the government could, and must do more.ABC

21) Good money to be made from growing onions

The National, Monday July 13th, 2015

ONIONS have a good market and can generate a sound income for local farmers, an agriculturist says.
Noel Kuman, programme manager village chain and innovation with the Fresh Produce Development Agency (FPDA), said onions were a potential earner.
“Papua New Guineans spend between K40 million and K50 million to import around 1140 metric tons of bulb onions from overseas,” Kuman said.
“This money can be put back into the pocket of local farmers if we can produce bulb onions at a good scale locally.”
Kuman and members of the FPDA senior management and board were in Elimbari, Chuave, last Thursday to inspect seven “model onion farms” created by local people.
The seven model farms are Kiragu-Maina-Kumom, Kobukaware One, Berema, Kebai, Bougir, Yori-Aura and Mam.
More than 400 farmers were involved in the project.
“Bulb onions are better than coffee because they pay  K3 to K4 per kilo and they take up little space but give a greater return,” Kuman said.
“They can be preserved and can be easily transported to the market for selling.”
Kuman said each model farm in Elimbari in their current stage could produce up to 10 tons of onions per harvest.
He said this could generate between K50,000 and K60,000 for each farm.
Kuman said onion farmers in Hela raised K1.1 million from selling their produce last year.
He said the major onion buyers in the country included mining catering companies, supermarkets and distributing agencies.
Kuman said it took FPDA between K7000 and K8000 to start up each of the farms.
He said the funds were used to buy greenhouse net, spades, insecticides, watering cans, nails, wire fences and safety gear.
Local community leader Max Sowa said the onion project in Elimbari was new and the people see it as a means to change their lives.
Sowa said they left their coffee gardens because coffee work was harder but the income small.
“For some 20 years we have not seen government services in this part of Chimbu,” Sowa said. “We feel that the onion project introduced here by the FPDA will change our lives.”
Sowa said the Government planned to open the nearby Chimbu Limestone Project in Elimbari and his people were planning to sell their onions and other produce at the mine.
FPDA has other onion projects in Hela, Chimbu, Morobe and Eastern Highlands.

22) Shortage of fish affects business

Ropate Valemei
Monday, July 13, 2015

THE shortage of fresh fish on Taveuni is affecting many businesses including restaurants, fish shops and hotels.

The Garden Island of Fiji is known for its abundance and variety of fresh fish, and visitors always expect fresh fish on the menu when they visit eateries on the island.

Some businesses have turned to using sliced fish from fish shops to meet the demand from customers for fish dishes.

Sasulava’s Fast Food owner Susana Neli said they hadn’t had fresh supplies of fish for two months and was hopeful things would improve soon.

“There hasn’t been a good supply of fish and it is probably because of the change in weather,” Ms Neli said.

“There is a big demand from eateries here, visitors and hotels and resorts.”

If there was no change in the supply of fish, she said, they would have no choice but to serve sliced fish to customers.

This shortage, she said, had also affected sales.

Charles Fish Shop owner Roshni Sidal said they had to use yellow fin tuna and sunfish to substitute fresh fish because of the shortage.

Yellow fin, she said, is bought for $6.50 per kg in Suva and sold at a much higher price to her customers.

“I have had a lot of orders but I could not meet the demand because of the shortage of fresh fish.”FIJITIMES


23) PM: Embrace spirit of Games

The National, Monday July 13th, 2015

PRIME Minister Peter O’Neill has thanked Pacific island athletes and members of the public in Port Moresby for embracing the Pacific Games.
He said as the Games entered its final week, “this is a proud time to be a Papua New Guinean”.
“We have thousands of visitors from around the Pacific sharing our home and we are competing in a spirit of unity,” he said.
“I have seen many thrilling contests from athletes at the peak of their careers from all Pacific nations.
“Our visitors have praised the hospitality of Papua New Guineans and they have been made to feel so welcome.
“I thank all Papua New Guineans for demonstrating to the region and the world the warmth of the nation.”
He said the facilities built for the Games would be used for many more years.
“We have world class sporting facilities. Children watching the Games with sporting dreams will one day train and compete at these stadiums, pools and courts,” he said.
“Let’s continue to get behind our athletes, and our competing nations, to have a great final week of the Games. ”
O’Neill urged Opposition leader Don Polye to leave politics aside and join in supporting the Games.

24) Nines gold

The National, Monday July 13th, 2015


PAPUA New Guinea asserted its claim to rugby league supremacy in the Pacific with a 38-10 win over Samoa in the nines gold medal playoff at the Sir John Guise Stadium yesterday.
Tonga edged out Fiji 16-14 for bronze in an at times aggressive encounter.
In front of a parochial hometown crowd, the star-studded PNG Hunters’-dominated side rode roughshod over Samoa, to put the icing on the cake to two-day tournament which it ruled from beginning to end.
They were then feted as national heroes with Prime Minister Peter O’Neill presenting them their gold medals.
Player-of-the-tournament Wartovo Puara Jr opened the PNG account in first minute and there was no stopping them.
An ensuing brace of tries from tall winger Bland Abavu and Ase Boas made it look as if the hometown heroes were going to put on another big score as they led 18-0 at the break.
Puara’s magic set the stadium on fire at resumption with a quick try to put the issue beyond doubt 22-0.
Down, but not out, Samoa strongly through hard-working forward Michael Rasmussen to trail 22-4.
Backrower Israel Eliab found the line again for PNG and with the extras from winger Thompson Tete, were up 28-4.
Samoan fullback Leia Saofaiga scored a centre try which he goaled himself to trail 28-10  but there was no stopping the indomitable PNG machine with two more tries from back Rex Yallon and Teteh, to add what was already a foregone conclusion.
“It was a good performance by all the players,” a beaming PNG coach Michael Marum said after the game.
The tournament’s All-Star team named after the grand final: Ase Boas, Gahuna Silas, Israel Eliab, and Wartoto Puara Jr (PNG), Etika Rokubuli (Fiji), Ionataga Tino (Samoa), Vahai Nau (Tonga), Chedyn Mani (Cook Islands), and Tino Tingiia (Solomon Islands).

25) PNG dear to Williams’ heart

The National, Monday July 13th, 2015


NEW Caledonian swimmer Adeline Williams has a special place in her heart for Papua New Guinea where her mother was born.
Her mother, Andrea Williams nee Meehan was born in Kavieng in New Ireland, before moving to Australia, then migrating to New Caledonia to become a French citizen.
After smashing her own record last night in the 100m breaststroke in a time of 1:11.05, Williams said she was happy to swim here as her family has a long history here in Papua New Guinea.
“And I am happy to be part of this history by swimming in this world class facility to break a Pacific Games records, and I am very proud of it,” she said.
Williams family are Australian but have been working and living in New Caledonia for more than 30 years, and they have become citizens which allows Adeline to represent New Caledonia.
Her uncle Tony Meehan had to travel from Australia to see her swim and win two gold medals. Her first medal was in the 50m breaststroke in a time of 32.61 which is much lower than her Games record of 32.50.
Meehan said he was very happy to see her win which is good news for her family in New Caledonia. “I was very happy to see Meehan win two gold medals at the 2015 Pacific Games,” he said.
“After hearing that she made the New Caledonia swim team three weeks ago, we made arrangements for one of our family members to come to stay and support her during the 2015 Pacific Games,” he said.
No stranger to PNG with business interests in Kavieng, Meehan was happy for his niece, Adeline.
Meehan said his niece, based in France, was currently a member of the French national swimming team
Adeline Williams and her fellow New Caledonians, Lara Grangeon and Emma Terebo are smashing Pacific Games record at will along with Amini Fonua of Tonga and Ryan Pini of PNG.

26) Guam, Fiji women rule the basketball courts

The National, Monday July 13th, 2015

GUAM (men) and Fiji (women) are the new basketball kings and queens of the Pacific Games.
In the men’s gold medal match Guam beat Fiji 78-61 yesterday and in the women’s final Fiji brushed aside American Samoa 78-61 to snatch the gold medal in a jam-packed but peaceful atmosphere.
The two champions had all the reasons to smile after going through the event unbeaten, which set a new Pacific Games record in Port Moresby.
In 2011 in Noumea, New Caledonia, Guam lost to New Caledonia in the men’s final in but this time it was very sweet victory for them in PNG.
Fiji women won the bronze medal in the 2011 Games but on Saturday they were just too good for American Samoa for the gold medal challenge.
The gold medal victory for Guam came after 36 years and they had the vocal local crowd loving their style of play and barracking for them.
The top scorer was Joseph Blas Junior, who had a high 21, followed by William Stinnett 18, Tai Wesley 14 and Jesus Cruz 12. Blas said Guam were blessed with the inclusion of US-based players from a college league.
Fiji’s double figures were from Marques Whippy (17 with two trebles), Joshua Fox 16 and Mataika Koyamainavure 12, while captain Leonard Whippy had eight and two three-pointers.

27) More gold for PNG and New Caledonia

13 July 2015

Hosts Papua New Guinea have claimed more gold at the Pacific Games in Port Moresby after cruising past Samoa 38-10 in the rugby league final.

Oti Bland Tony and Wartovo Puara Junior scored two tries apiece, with the latter picking up the player of the tournament award.

The hosts, with a team mostly made up of players from the top domestic side the PNG Hunters, were unbeaten through seven matches throughout the competition.

Tonga claimed bronze after beating Fiji.

New Caledonia wrapped up a dominant display in the water with back to back gold medals in the ocean swim.

Thibaut Mary touched home first in the men’s race with Charlotte Robin taking out the women’s title.

The race had been reduced from five to three kilometres after the start was delayed by nearly three hours, by which time the tide on Loloata Island had gone out.

Robin finished the Games with five medals, including three gold, while for Mary it was an extra special occasion.

“The men of New Caledonia don’t have a gold medal [in the water] – it’s the first – and I’m just very happy. [It was] so difficult – the condition is very bad but I’m first so it’s ok,” he said.

The French territory was typically dominant in the water, having also claimed 19 of 40 gold medals in the pool at Taurama.

Samoa’s gold medal performance in the women’s cricket final has been labelled the biggest achievement in the country’s cricketing history.

Having set Papua New Guinea 104 to win in wet conditions at the Bisini Sports Complex, the hosts collapsed from 37 without loss to be 58 for 5.

Needing 32 off the final four overs, the Lewas got desperate and lost three more wickets to run-outs before eventually finishing four runs shy of victory.

It was Samoas first win ever against PNG and coach Ian West said it was the biggest result in their history.

“We’re just an affiliate nation [and] we’re up against all these associate nations,” he said.

“We only brought 12 players with us because it’s all we could afford. We lost our two opening batters before the tournament, we lost one of our best bowlers before the tournament and the girls just came out and walked away with a gold medal.

“I was absolutely cursing at the start of the second innings and then they got off to a flying start [but the] girls just fought back, never gave up and I couldn’t ask for any more.”

Ian West said Samoa cricket had been living on potential for a long time but this showed they can beat anyone in the region.RNZI

28) PNG win first Twenty20 cricket qualifier

13 July 2015

The Papua New Guinea cricket team has edged Jersey by 24 runs to win its first Twenty20 qualifier.

The runs were shared across the Pacific team’s lineup after they batted first.

Number three Assad Vala top scored with 29 as the team reached 145 runs with nine wickets down.

The PNG Barramundis struck with key wickets to restrict their opponents to 121 in response.

Norman Vanua was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets for 19 runs in four overs.

Next up for PNG is Hong Kong, who lost their first match against Jersey.

PNG coach Dipak Patel said his players were not getting carried away.

“As far as we’re concerned every game in this tournament is going to be tough,” he said.

“We’re not taking any team lightly – they’ll be hurting after losing and I’m sure they’ll come out with a different plan and make sure they’ll be difficult to beat.

“We just want to rest up on what we’ve achieved today and there are little things we want to do better tomorrow.

The top six sides from the 18-day tournament in Britain qualify for the World Twenty20 tournament in India next year.RNZI

29) First week of Pacific Games a success: PGC President
By Online Editor
5:21 pm GMT+12, 12/07/2015, Papua New Guinea

By Pita Ligaiula in Port Moresby, PNG

Pacific Games Council (PGC) President Vidhya Lakhan has described the first week of the Pacific Games a success.

Lakhan made the remarks at the PGC Annual General Meeting held yesterday (Sunday 12 July) in Port Moresby.

He said the success of the games is attributed to the world class facilities provided by host nation, Papua New Guinea.

“The much awaited 2015 Pacific Games is upon us and we have already seen one week of a very successful competition in a number of sports on our games programme.  We again thank the Prime Minister and the government of Papua New Guinea for the magnificent venues and facilities they provided for our games.

“Admittedly some of the venues are of world class and better than those we’ve had for our games in the past. I would like to think of the high quality of these venues has a contributing factor in the large number of records that are being created at these games,” Lakhan told delegates.

He also thanked the Games Organising Committee (GOC) for their teamwork and tireless efforts that has enabled PNG to host the Games successfully.

“This is not to say that we have not had any challenges for the preparations of the delivery of these games. The very late delivery of some of our games venues and the athlete’s village added unnecessary pressures on the Games Organising Committee. However I thank both the GOC and the PGA heads of delegation for their patience and understanding and I congratulate you both in working as a team in resolving some of these outstanding issues amicably.

“The council thanks the International federations’ representatives and technical delegates for their assistance in the delivery of the 28 sport competitions.

“The incredible opening ceremony set the scene for what no doubt will be an outstanding two weeks of competitions in PNG. As we move in to the second week of competitions I wish all of your athletes who are still in competition a very successful games,” said Lakhan.

PNG’s Olympic Committee President, Sir John Dawanicura said their aim was to deliver the best for the games.

“Our aim was to deliver a most successful games.

“When I was asked if we would be the biggest and the best, my response was will wait after the games, and let the athletes be the judge of that,” he said.


30) Fiji beat Vanuatu on penalties to reach Olympics for first time

By Online Editor
3:17 pm GMT+12, 12/07/2015, Papua New Guinea

Fiji beat Vanuatu 4-3 in a penalty shootout to qualify for the Olympic Games soccer tournament for the first time after a remarkable day of drama on and off the pitch on Sunday.

Jale Dreola scored the decisive spot-kick that sent Fiji to Rio 2016 after the two sides played out a 0-0 extra-time draw at the Sir Hubert Murray Stadium.

Vanuatu’s Chanel Obed is the unfortunate player who will be remembered for missing his side’s last penalty – a nervous effort that was scuffed well wide of the post.

Vanuatu only found out they would be playing in the final on the morning of the game following New Zealand’s exclusion from the competition for fielding an ineligible player in the teams’ semifinal match, which the Kiwis won 2-0.

Instead, Vanuatu were handed a 3-0 walkover and hours later were lining up against the Fijians in one of the most significant games in both sides’ histories. Neither had qualified for an Olympic Games before.

“We were preparing to play New Zealand in the morning and then we find out it’s Vanuatu, but it didn’t make any difference to us,” said Fiji hero Dreola.

“Since I was at school I used to be good at taking penalties, so I told the boys I was confident and I wanted to take it. Going to Rio was my aim.”

Vanuatu captain Brian Kaltack was left rueing numerous missed chances by his team, particularly in the first half.

“We dominated the first half and the second half – we had so many great chances. I don’t know what happened. It’s hard luck, but we accept it,” the defender said.

“It was a strange day because we had no idea what the management and staff had been doing. We were just sitting there after lunch waiting – then they told us it would be Vanuatu v Fiji in the final. So we just got our stuff and went straight to the field.”

If Vanuatu had lacked preparation time, it didn’t show as they utterly dominated the first half – with Bill Nicholls and Bong Kalo spurning clear chances.

Even Jean Kaltack, the striker who bagged 16 goals in Vanuatu’s 46-0 win against Micronesia in the pool stage, saw his finishing touch abandon him as he skewed a header wide.

The second half was a different story, as Fiji – ranked five places higher than Vanuatu in the Fifa rankings at 195 – suddenly looked the side more likely to score.

Nickel Chand’s fierce strike was saved acrobatically by impressive Vanuatu goalkeeper Selonie Iaruel, who then made an even better stop to deny Chris Wasasala with his legs.

The chances kept coming at both ends in a frantic extra-time, with Iosefo Verevou heading Fiji’s best chance just over and Jean Kaltack seeing a shot blocked in the final seconds.

But in the end, the sides who famously rattled in 84 goals between them in their recent pool matches against Micronesia could not muster a single strike after 120 minutes.

All three players to score penalties for Vanuatu were brothers – Jean, Brian and Tony Kaltack – but after Obed missed in sudden death, the stage was set for Dreola to slam home the historic winning penalty for Fiji.

Meanwhile for New Zealand, who were resounding favourites to qualify for Rio 2016 since the tournament began, it was a case of being left to wonder what might have been.


 31) NZ Disqualified From Olympic Football

Fielded ineligible player at Pacific Games

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, July 13, 2015) – New Zealand has been disqualified from the final to determine Oceania’s representative at next year’s Rio Olympics men’s soccer tournament after it fielded an ineligible player in the semi-finals, the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) says.

Fiji beat Vanuatu on penalties in the final on Sunday as behind-the-scenes ructions continued, ABC reporter Richard Ewart said, at the Sir Hubert Murray Stadium in Port Moresby.

He said the OFC is refusing to speak on the matter.

New Zealand had advanced to Sunday’s qualifying final against Fiji, which is also the gold medal match at the Pacific Games, following a 2-0 win over Vanuatu in the semi-finals.

Vanuatu, however, lodged a protest with the Oceania Football Confederation Disciplinary Committee who found New Zealand had fielded an ineligible player, and awarded the game 3-0 to Vanuatu instead.

“The committee has declared that New Zealand has forfeited the match against Vanuatu … and therefore Vanuatu proceed to the final match of the OFC Olympic qualifying tournament against Fiji,” its statement said.

The OFC did not name the player, nor said why he was ineligible, though New Zealand Football later said that defender Deklan Wynne had been deemed to be ineligible and they would challenge the decision.

“We strongly refute the ruling regarding the ineligibility of the player in question and we will be challenging this decision,” NZF chief executive Andy Martin said in a statement.

“While we firmly believe tonight’s match should have been delayed, we will continue to do everything in our power to ensure that any final decision is only reached after a proper and fair process has been carried out.

“We trust that Oceania Football Confederation will change its position and conduct that proper and fair process.”

NZF said Wynne had been deemed ineligible due to him acquiring a new nationality under article 7 of the FIFA statutes.

Under the article, either the player or a parent or grandparent needs to be born in the country they wish to represent.

If they are ineligible under the first three criteria, they can represent the country if they have lived there for five years continuously since the age of 18, making the 20-year-old Wynne too young to qualify under that clause.

Such a clause, however, would restrict many age-group players, particularly those wanting to play in the under-23 Olympic tournaments from representing a country they were not born in or had any family ties to.

Gordon Watson, former OFC media manager and Pacific Games soccer commentator, said the situation was quite extraordinary.

“I was just absolutely shocked beyond words,” he said. “Who knows what is going to happen next.

“Where the discrepancy appears to have been picked up from what I understand is that he is not eligible to play for New Zealand until he has spent five years in that country after the age of 18.

“But he is 20 years old so he hasn’t fulfilled that criteria.”

The 20-year-old Wynne has played for the senior All Whites side, as well as playing in the under-20 World Cup recently held in New Zealand.

Radio Australia


Nurse Anne Pakoa Wins United States Women of Courage Award for Vanuatu

Port Vila, Vanuatu | June 26, 2015

A woman receiving an award. (Photo Credit: State Dept.)

Ambassador North presents the ‘Women of Courage’ award to Ms. Anne Pakoa at the Vanuatu Cultural Center, June 23, 2015. Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet stands in the background

Grassroots leader in healthcare reform and medical education programs for Vanuatu, Ms. Anne L. Pakoa was honored this week with the U.S. Department of State’s Secretary’s International Women of Courage Award.

U.S. Ambassador to Vanuatu, Walter North presented Ms. Pakoa the award in recognition for her continuous work in creating educational and professional employment opportunities for the women of Vanuatu. The U.S. Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet also attended the award ceremony and praised Ms. Pakoa’s leadership and lifetime achievements in helping Vanuatu’s nursing professionals.

Ambassador North said, “Anne exhibits courage. She has always been a strong advocate for women’s rights, facing numerous challenges as a woman living in Vanuatu. By honoring Ms. Pakoa today, we recognize her dedication, commitment, and resolve to achieve so much more for all women and not just for herself.”

The U.S. Department of State’s Secretary’s International Women of Courage Award is an annual event that honors women around the globe who have exemplified exceptional courage and leadership in advocating for human rights, women’s equality, and social progress, often at great personal risk.

Ms. Pakoa graduated from the Vanuatu School of Nursing (now Vanuatu College of Nursing) in 1990. After graduating from the Vanuatu School of Nursing, she became a practicing nurse and by 1994 was teaching health programs at the University of Papua New Guinea in Goroka. She subsequently returned to Vanuatu and taught at Vanuatu’s College of Nursing for several years before receiving an education award from the Australian Agency for International Development (AUSAID) for a post graduate program in Education Administration at Melbourne University in 1999, majoring in education policy processes.

Ms. Pakoa initiated the development of the Neil Thomas Ministries Christian University Hospital and formed a basic community health nursing curriculum, which evolved into a community health school.

In a nation where women are often marginalized, face abuse, experience violence, and are far too often discriminated against, Ms. Pakoa has set an outstanding example as a medical professional, wife, mother, and civil society leader.

Currently, Ms. Pakoa continues to lead courageously. She is an outspoken female voice for teachers’ welfare. Her ongoing advocacy and work on behalf of Vanuatu’s female population, young women, and professional nurses sets the example and contributed toward her recognition as Vanuatu’s 2015 Woman of Courage.

Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1109 ( Sunday 5 July )


1) PNG concerned about lack of permits from border-crossers

3 July 2015

There’s concern in Papua New Guinea about people flocking into the country from neighbouring Indonesia to take up work without the necessary permits.

The newspaper, The National, reports the foreign employment division manager with PNG’s Labour Department, saying they are unable to monitor movement of people across the border with Indonesia.

Mr Raga says it is only when relevant government agencies go in for inspection in border areas that they are able to pick up on the illegal workers and send them back to their countries.

140 foreigners without work permits were recently picked up in a logging camp in Bewani during a joint patrol.

Bewani Oil Palm Plantations Ltd says the expatriate workers deported were not employed by their company but instead for independent sub-contractors of the project.

The company says it is now helping these independent sub-contractors to comply with the law relating to employment of expatriates.RNZI

2) Bad weather delays Solomons independence celebrations

The current bad weather in Solomon Islands has forced the government to delay the celebrations of the 37th independence anniversary.

4 July 2015

The celebrations should fall on Tuesday July the 7th, but because of the current bad weather, they will now be held on Friday July the 10th.

The change follows a Cabinet decision Thursday afternoon.

The Government has also decided that there will still be a public holiday on Independence Day, but there will also be a special public holiday on July 10 to enable Solomon Islanders to honour the day their country gained its political independence from British rule 37 years ago.RNZI


3) Official coronation of King Tupou VI to take place on Saturday 04 July

By Online Editor
00:42 am GMT+12, 03/07/2015, Tonga

Seven years after the coronation of the late King George Tupou V, the people of Tonga will celebrate the coronation of his brother, His Majesty, King Tupou VI as the 24th Tu’i Kanokupolu.

The ceremony will take place at the Free Wesleyan Centenary Church 0at 10am on Saturday, 04 July.

Foreign dignitaries from the United Kingdom, the Crown Prince and Princess of Japan, Maori King and many special guests are already in the country to celebrate this auspicious occasion.

Also, many Tongans living in the United States, Australia, New Zealand have also flown to the island kingdom to attend this historical event.

More than a thousand guests are expected to attend the official coronation at the Centenary Church, including a 200 voice mass choir.

The official crowing will be conducted by Rev Darcy Wood, the former president of Australia’s United Methodist Church, accompanied by the President of the Free Wesleyan Church, Rev Dr ‘Ahio.

After the official coronation ceremony, Their Majesties King Tupou VI and Queen Nanasipau’u and the invited guests will attend the coronation luncheon at the Royal Palace to be followed by traditional performances.

A formal dinner will be held later in the evening and followed by the traditional torchlight ceremony or Tupakapakanava and fireworks.

On Sunday, a thanksgiving prayer service will be held at the Centenary Church in Nuku’alofa followed by a Royal Luncheon hosted by HRH Princess Latufuipeka Tuku’aho at the Villa.

To mark the historic occasion, the Tonga Government has declared Tuesday 07 July as a national public holiday..


4) Samoa to amend Village Fono Act

3 July 2015

The Samoan government is proposing a change to village by-laws to help curb rising levels of domestic violence and drug and alcohol abuse in village communities.

Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi says he also wants the amendments to ensure that village matais do not breach the human rights of village locals.

The Minister of Women, Community and Social Development, Tolofua Ivalelei Leiataua says the proposed changes would require Village Fono Councils to produce an exhaustive list of village by laws and corresponding penalties to avoid controversial rulings.

“So this bill will require the Village Fono Council to lay down a foundation in as far as upholding the law and maintaining peace and tranquility in the village. And to be in line with the constitution of Samoa.”RNZI


5) Tony Abbott to shift ‘centre of government’ to Torres Strait

JULY 05, 2015 8:41PM

Gina Rushton

PM meets leaders on Indigenous recognition

5 ) Prime Minister Tony Abbott will move the “centre of government” north to the Torres Strait Islands and Northern Peninsula area for a week next month in keeping with his election promise to spend time in remote indigenous communities.

“It’s very important that our national leaders focus on the whole of our country, including its most remote parts,” Mr Abbott said tonight as he hosted the nation’s leading Indigenous figures at Kirribilli House in Sydney to discuss the issue of Indigenous recognition. About 40 community leaders will meet with both the PM and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten in Sydney tomorrow to thrash out a form of words for a referendum on Aboriginal recognition in the constitution.

“The Government has already made progress in getting children to school, adults into work and making communities safer,” he said. “There is more work to be done.”

The August trip was an opportunity for Mr Abbott and a number of his ministerial colleagues and senior government officials to “review progress in delivering on these priorities”, he said.

He announced that he had been “jointly invited” by the Torres Strait Regional Authority, the Torres Shire Council, Torres Strait Island Regional Council and the Northern Peninsula Regional Council to spend a week with their communities.

“During this week, this region and its people will be the focus of my attention,” he said.

Last year Mr Abbott, who promised if elected he would spend a week a year living in a remote indigenous community, visited the Yolngu people in Yirrkala, northeast Arnhem Land.


6a ) Logging i kilim dai ol pisin long PNG

Postim 3 July 2015, 14:01 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Wari i stap long wok blong katim daon ol bikbus oa logging na bagarapim environment bai nap kilim olgeta pisin long Papua New Guinea.

Odio: Wako Napasu Managing Director na papa blong turis bisnis em oli kolim Country Tours PNG i toktok
Wako Napasu Managing Director na papa blong  turis bisnis em oli kolim Country Tours PNG i mekim despla toktok bihaen long emi wok long lukim mak blong ol pisin long ol bibus iwok long go daon.
Emi tok planti turis blong ol narapla kantri long wold isave gat bikpla laik long lukim National bird blong PNG, The Bird of Paradise na ol narapla pisin em oli save stap tasol long PNG.
Mr Napasu itok tu olsem wok blong lukim ol pisin oa bird watching i wanpla gutpla bisnis emi nap helpim ol pipal sopos oli lukautim gut enviroment we ol pisin isave stap long en na noken katim ol diwai.
Mr Napasu ibin tokim mi despla wari blong en taem emi bin stap long South Pacific Toursm exchange sho emi bin kamap hia long Melbourne long mun igo pinis.ABC

6b) Geoffrey Vaki igo kalabus long 3 pela yia

Updated 3 July 2015, 14:15 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Supreme Kot blong Papua New Guinea i tede salim Komisina blong Polis long bipo, Geoffrey Vaki long tripela yia.

Long mun June, Supreme kot ibin painim Vaki i gilti long contempt of court oa olsem em ino bihainim oda blong kot.
Dispela em long wanem em ino bin karim aut oda blong arestim Prime Minister Peter O’Neill klostu wanpela yia i go pinis long ol korapsen sas.
Mr O’Neill ibin makim Vaki long kamap Polis Komisina bihain long anti-korapsen Taskforce Sweep ibin sutim PM long fraud long planti milion kina i kam long Paraka loa kampani.
Ripota blong ABC long Port Moresby ibin go harim disisan blong Kot long moning tede na i tok, Kot i givim disisan long Vaki imas go kalabus long 3 pela yia na em i mas wokim hard leba wok taim em i stap long kalabus.ABC

6c) Brèves du Pacifique – vendredi 3 juillet 2015

Posté à 3 July 2015, 18:58 AEST

Caroline Lafargue

Papouasie Nouvelle-Guinée: l’ancien patron de la police nationale, condamné aux travaux forcés.

Geoffrey Vaki passera trois ans en prison. Il paie ainsi son refus d’arrêter le Premier ministre, Peter O’Neill en juin 2014. Geoffrey Vaki n’a pas appliqué le mandat d’arrêt délivré par le service d’enquête contre la corruption, qui soupçonne Peter O’Neill d’avoir organisé le versement de 30 millions de dollars au cabinet de son avocat. Une somme puisée, illégalement, dans les caisses de l’état papou. Le mandat d’arrêt contre le Premier ministre est toujours valable, plus d’un an après, mais il est pour l’instant inapplicable en raison des recours intentés par les avocats de Peter O’Neill.
Australie: deux attaques de requin dans la même région, et en deux jours seulement. Vendredi matin, un surfeur a été éjecté de sa planche par un requin à Lennox Head, à 200 km au sud de Brisbane. Mais heureusement, le squale s’est éloigné rapidement. Jeudi matin, un autre surfeur a eu moins de chance au large de Ballina, à 10 km de Lennox Head. Un grand requin blanc lui a mordu les deux jambes. Le surfeur a perdu beaucoup de sang, mais il a survécu à son opération, avant d’être plongé dans un coma artificiel. Les autorités de la Nouvelle-Galles du Sud ont autorisé l’élimination du requin, mais il n’a pas encore été retrouvé. En attendant, une compétition internationale de surf a du être suspendue. Elle devait s’ouvrir ce vendredi matin à Lennox Head.
Opération de sauvetage réussie dans les Carterets, ce petit archipel situé à 80 km au nord de Bougainville. Un petit bateau a coulé. Deux des passagers sont portés disparus, mais les six autres – dont une mère et son bébé, ont réussi à se cramponner aux débris de l’embarcation. Ils ont pu ensuite nager jusqu’à une petite île, où un hélicoptère de la marine américaine est venu les chercher. Selon la capitaine du bâtiment américain USNS Mercy, Melanie Merrick, les six rescapés sont en bonne santé.
Tony Abbott salue « la présence réconfortante de la marine américaine dans le monde entier et en baie de Sydney ». Le Premier ministre australien a passé plusieurs heures à bord de l’USS Blue Ridge, le bâtiment qui commande la 7ème flotte américaine. Les marines australienne et américaine préparent leur exercice naval interarmées bisannuel, baptisé « Talisman Sabre ».  Cette année, la Nouvelle-Zélande et le Japon prendront également part à l’exercice, qui débutera dimanche. En tout, 27 000 militaires seront déployés sur deux sites d’entraînement, près de Darwin, dans le Territoire du Nord, et près de Rockhampton, dans le Queensland. ABC
6d) XVèmes Jeux du Pacifique: « on ne va pas rafler toutes les médailles »
Mis à jour 3 July 2015, 19:00 AEST

Caroline Lafargue

Pour la première fois, l’Australie envoie ses athlètes aux Jeux du Pacifique: en voile, en rugby à 7, en taekwondo et en haltérophilie. Rencontre avec l’haltérophile Philip Wood et la responsable des entraînements de l’équipe australienne. 

La cérémonie d’ouverture n’aura lieu samedi soir, mais les premières compétitions ont débuté aujourd’hui avec les premiers matchs de basket, de football, de tennis de table et de touch rugby. Mais il faudra attendre la semaine prochaine pour les premières compétitions d’haltérophilie.
Cette année pour la première fois, l’Australie et la Nouvelle-Zélande ont le droit d’aligner leurs athlètes, dans des disciplines choisies parce que la compétition est équilibrée. Il s’agit du rugby à 7, de la voile, du taekwondo et de l’haltérophilie (auxquelles il faut ajouter le football, pour la Nouvelle-Zélande). Il faut ajouter le foot, mais uniquement pour la Nouvelle-Zélande – les Australiens, eux, sont trop forts en ballon rond. Dans ces sports, les équipes australiennes et kiwies ne sont pas suffisamment bonnes pour faire main basse sur toutes les médailles, contrairement à la natation, discipline marquée par la suprématie de l’Australie.

ABC Radio Australie s’est rendue au dernier entraînement, à Melbourne, de Philip Wood, l’un des 8 haltérophiles australiens sélectionnés pour les Jeux du Pacifique.

Il est le dernier venu dans l’équipe australienne, dans la catégorie des plus de 105 kilos. Philip Wood a commencé à soulever des poids il y a seulement deux ans. À l’époque, il cherchait justement à… perdre du poids. Il s’est mis au crossfit, un mélange de plusieurs disciplines inspiré des entraînements militaires. C’est dans ce cadre qu’il a découvert l’haltérophilie:

« Au début, je soulevais 90 kilos à l’arraché, et 115 kilos a l’épaulé-jeté. »  

Depuis, Philip Wood a progressé à pas de géant. Il y a quelques semaines, il a soulevé 145 kilos à l’arraché et 170 kilos à l’épaulé-jeté. Une performance qui lui a permis d’être sélectionné pour les Jeux du Pacifique:

« Initialement, mon seul objectif était de porter le maillot de l’Australie, mais maintenant, je vise une 3ème ou 4ème place aux Jeux du Pacifique. »  

Mais il faudra compter avec la concurrence des redoutables Papous, Kiribati, Samoans, etc. L’équipe australienne n’arrive donc pas en conquérante à Port-Moresby, même si elle affiche son optimisme. Jackie White, la responsable du pôle d’entraînement de l’équipe nationale australienne d’haltérophilie:

« Les pays du Pacifique sont des concurrents sérieux. Donc la compétition sera équilibrée entre l’Australie, la Nouvelle-Zélande et les pays du Pacifique. On ne va pas arriver et rafler toutes les médailles. Ceci dit, la majorité de nos haltérophiles ont des chances de médailles. »  

Les Jeux du Pacifique sont reconnus par la Fédération Internationale d’Haltérophilie. Ils rapportent donc des points pour la qualification aux Jeux Olympiques de Rio de Janeiro en 2016.ABC


7) Fine for pregnancy

Sunday, July 05, 2015

BEIJING – A Chinese company plans to demand its employees seek approval to get pregnant and fine those who conceive a child without permission, reports said, provoking a media firestorm.

“Only married female workers who have worked for the company for more than one year can apply for a place on the birth planning schedule,” read a policy distributed by a credit co-operative in Jiaozuo, in the central province of Henan.

“The employee must strictly stick to the birth plan once it is approved. Those who get pregnant in violation of the plan such that their work is affected will be fined 1000 yuan ($F338).”

News portal The Paper published a screen shot of the document, adding a company representative had admitted the lender sent the notice to its staff, but said it was only a draft seeking employees’ comment.

Violators would not be considered for promotion or awards and their incentives and year-end bonuses would be cancelled “if their pregnancy severely hindered their work”, the policy said.


8) Asian Immigration Blamed For Deadly Riot In PNG
‘Infiltration of Chinese’ into Madang causing resentment

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, July 2, 2015) – A Madang-based woman in Papua New Guinea says Tuesday’s rioting and looting which forced the closure of businesses and schools in Madang town is a sign of resentment at the increased infiltration of recent Asian arrivals.

Police say the unrest stemmed from opportunists taking over a public protest against capitalism.

[PIR editor’s note: The National reported that ‘Police in Madang have requested for an independent investigation into the looting and killing of a boy in the town this week. ... Madang provincial police commander Sylvester Kalaut said the investigation should find out who killed the boy because there were several other gun shots fired (apart from police) during the looting.’]

Dr Nancy Sullivan, who has worked as an anthropologist in PNG for around 25 years, says the protest was not about the controversial planned Pacific Marine Industrial Zone.

“It has to do with basically pastors and their constituents around six districts in Madang, they were getting together to say we need to fight the infiltration of Chinese taking over our land, buying state land, we get nothing; these are prescribed jobs and they seem to be able to grease palms and move into them.”

Dr Nancy Sullivan however says under the terms of the PMIZ financing agreement with the Chinese EXIM bank, Chinese workers rather than locals are to take up the construction work.

Radio New Zealand International


9) Invite to EU banks

The National, Friday July 3rd, 2015

THE move to invite European banks to enter Papua New Guinea will bring competition into the country’s banking sector, Trade, Commerce and Industry Minister Richard Maru (pictured) says.
He said on Wednesday that the Government had extended an invitation to European Investment Bank (EIB) to enter the PNG banking sector.
He said the Government believed that would have an impact on interest rates, which were high in PNG currently, and longer repayment time for loans.
The EIB is the European Union’s bank owned by and representing the interests of European Union Member States and is working closely with other EU institutions to implement EU policy.
“It was interesting the Banks were there and I said the return on investment for all the banks here (PNG) are high,” Maru said during a media conference on Wednesday following his return from a two-week trade and investment mission to Europe.
“With our meeting with European Investment Bank, we’ve asked them to come and set up an office in Port Moresby.
“Yes other international banks that we having been dealing with are important and they will continue to be important, but it is important that we have a relationship with all the major banks.
“Because then you can play one against the other and look at bringing the interest rates down, you can look at longer terms, more concessional terms.
“There is more room for more banks to come.”
He said response from the European banks seemed positive.
“The indications look quite favourable and we are still going to push that if they want our business, they should not operate outside of the country but should come and have an office here in Port Moresby.”

European countries show interest in PNG

The National, Thursday July 2nd, 2015

THERE is growing interest among European countries to invest in Papua New Guinea, an official says.
Trade Commerce and Industry Minister Richard Maru made the comment yesterday following his return from a two-week trade and investment mission to Europe with a small delegation from Department of Trade Commerce and Industry, including Secretary John Andrias.
Maru said there were wide interest from European countries in sectors in PNG ranging from mining and petroleum, telecommunications, housing companies and the banking sector, among others.
“The indications look quite favourable and we are still going to push for them. But if they want our business, they should not operate in for instance, Sydney – but they should come and operate in Port Moresby.
“But all in all we had a very good trip over the last two weeks,” Maru said.
He also noted that scholarships for studies was on the agenda during the discussions and meetings.
However, Maru noted that the market in Europe would be challenging as well.
“Our challenge is to market the investment opportunities in PNG to companies and the government of the 27 strong EU (European Union) member states by strengthening our presence and visibility in Europe.
“The appointment of an ambassador to Switzerland with accreditation to the World Trade Organisation and a Chancery in France as announced by the prime minister (Peter O’Neill).

 European Investment Bank Keen On Partnering With Fiji

Energy, water sectors to be supported with financing, technical assistance

By Reginald Chandar

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, July 3, 2015) – The European Investment Bank has shown a keen interest in entering into partnerships with the Fijian Government and its private sector.

Vice president of the EIB, Mr Pim van Ballekom met with Attorney-General and Minister for Finance, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum in Suva yesterday where a major re-engagement between Fiji and the member nations of the European Union was canvassed.

“From what the Vice President told me, we are entering a very exciting era as Fiji and the EU member countries strengthen our existing ties, work together for our mutual economic and strategic benefit and also develop opportunities working with our private sectors,” said Sayed-Khaiyum.

The European Investment Bank is owned by and represents the interests of the European Union member states.

[PIR editor’s note: Fijilive also reported that ‘The Fijian Government is looking to work closely with Singapore’s well-functioning and globally-renowned Economic Development Board, which plays the same role as Investment Fiji.’]

With its headquarters in Luxembourg, the bank not only provides financial lending support but also plays an advisory role in terms of financing and investment.

The talks centred around EIB’s financing options for Fiji, technical assistance for Fiji’s energy sector and a joint funding proposal with the Asian Development Bank for Fiji’s Urban Water Sanitation Project.

The meeting was also an opportunity for both the Minister and the Vice President to canvass future potential areas of cooperation in the financial sector and infrastructure development.

The EIB delegation led by Mr van Ballekom which is making a three day visit to Fiji has also signed a technical assistance agreement with the Fiji Electricity Authority.

“Our interest lies where our clients want to be but our strength is in infrastructure, water, water sanitation and energy,” Mr van Ballekom said.

He also visited Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and held a meeting with the Minister for Infrastructure, Parveen Kumar.



10) PNG will be a powerful Pacific nation, PM says
By Online Editor
00:36 am GMT+12, 03/07/2015, Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill says the country is developing to be one of the most powerful nations in the Pacific.

O’Neill, while opening the new City Hall in Port Moresby, said people must accept change as the nation was transforming at a pace never seen before.

He said Port Moresby was changing and it would be the best in the Pacific in which more than one million people will live in about three years from now.

National Capital District Governor Powes Parkop said: “The K54 million (US$19.6 million) City Hall that took one and a half years to complete, will look after its staff and they will partner the Government to transform the city and the country.

“I am thankful to the O’Neill Government because the city is taking gigantic steps.

“It is the melting point of the country and it needs to grow.

“We are constructing a road from Badihagwa to Gerehu to 9-Mile. This is a gigantic step.

“We have opened the Kumul Flyover Bridge – this is a gigantic step.

“We are hosting the 2015 Pacific Games with such infrastructure – this is a gigantic step.

“And we are opening this new city hall – this is a gigantic step, said Parkop.

11) $83m for housing

Geraldine Panapasa
Saturday, July 04, 2015

THE Housing Authority of Fiji has set aside more than $83million for various development projects as it continues to maintain its focus on providing adequate social housing and infrastructure for the people of Fiji.

Under the leadership of new CEO, Joshua Wycliffe, the authority’s multimilliondollar commitment, which is still in the pipeline and planning stages, is expected to meet the growing demand for housing in the country.

Since taking office in March-April this year, Mr Wyclliffe said Housing Authority was in a unique position to deliver on its commitment.

Investments in Matavolivoli, Nadi are expected to cost about $9.7m while $5.4m has been earmarked for developments in Tavua.

An aggregate of $8.8m has been set aside for Tavakubu, Lautoka while $48m and $11.3m have been earmarked for Tacirua and Wainibuku respectively in the Central Division.

“The target for our development team is to make available now and in the next 18 months close to 1200 lots. We are breaking these down into various areas and region in the country.

“So in Matavolivoli we’ll have 420 potential dwellings, about 350 potential dwellings in Nepani, and 220 dwellings in Tavua. For Tavakubu, we are looking at about 900 potential dwellings, and close to 500 dwellings in Tacirua — that’s a wide range the team is working on in terms of being able to deliver,” Mr Wycliffe told this newspaper yesterday.

“Bulk part of this should go into the market fully developed by at least the first quarter of next year — some will go into 2017 but that’s the target for now.”

He said they were also looking at preparing plans for further acquisition, adding his objective was to build collaboration among staff members to stay focused and committed to achieving their set goals and targets. Mr Wycliffe said they had a database of more than 27,000 customers.

* Read more about Housing Authority’s new CEO in next week’s InsideSTORY.Fijitimes


12) Dry spell tops agenda

Repeka Nasiko
Sunday, July 05, 2015

DIVISIONAL Government heads in the Western Division are expected to hold a meeting next week with Commissioner Western Manasa Tagicakibau to prepare for the dry spell affecting the country.

Mr Tagicakibau said the meeting was necessary to ensure all State departments were prepared.

“We have a lot of things to discuss and all of the Government departments like health, education, agriculture and other authorities will know what their needs are and what they intend to do to address the upcoming dry spell,” he said.

“What we need is co-operation and an integrated approach so that we are able to bring our resources together to assist people that will need help.

“The main thing is water and making sure that everyone has the necessary amount of water.”

He said district officers and provincial administrators had been tasked with disseminating information to all relevant authorities on the water distribution schedule.

Mr Tagicakibau added that while a budget had been set aside by his office, a request would be made to the Ministry of Provincial Development for further financial assistance.Fijitimes

13) Cyclone Rachel Downgraded; Solomons Still At Risk
Flash floods, landslides still likely from heavy rain

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, July 3, 2015) – Cyclone Raquel has weakened but forecasters are warning flash floods and landslides are still likely for Solomon Islands.

The Fiji met service says Raquel has been downgraded to a tropical disturbance, but forecasters warn the system is still likely to cause flash floods and landslides for Solomon Islands.

It says the system is 250 kms north of Honiara and travelling east south east at 7 kms.

A spokesperson for the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, Jess Carey, says people still need to be prepared.

“In the last 24 hours it was almost stationary overnight but still is a category one system where you’ll still be expecting 90 to 100 kilometre per hour gusts. Rainfall well in excess of 100 millimetres in a 24 hour period is likely and with that rainfall you can expect flash flooding and landslides as well.”

Jess Carey says areas south of a cyclone are always the worst affected and rough seas and strong gusts are likely near Honiara and on Guadalcanal over the next few days.

A heavy rain warning is in place for all provinces and Islands.

Meanwhile, the Solomon Islands Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization have issued health warnings in response to Cyclone Racquel.

The acting permanent secretary, Dr Christopher Becha, says the category one storm could seriously impact health.

He says extreme weather can lead to infectious disease outbreaks, damage health infrastructure and limit access to health care services.

Both agencies have called on the public to maintain safe hygiene practices including hand washing and boiling water before drinking it.

Meanwhile in Guam, the weather service there says tropical storm Chan-hom could become a typhoon within the next 12 hours.

The storm is strengthening as it moves west towards the Northern Marianas and Guam where it is expected to hit at the weekend.

Radio New Zealand International


14) PanAust: Project going well

The National, Friday July 3rd, 2015

THE Frieda River copper-gold project in West Sepik is progressing well under the stewardship of PanAust and joint venture partner Highlands Pacific, PanAust managing director Dr Fred Hess says.
Hess underlined the commitment of the project partners to develop Frieda, adding that significant progress had been on the feasibility study for the project.
During a visit to Port Moresby last month, he met with senior ministers including the Mining Minister and managing director of the Mineral Resources Authority (MRA) Philip Samar.
“The project stands to benefit from the support provided by long-term PanAust investor Guangdong Rising Assets Management (GRAM) which recently took control of PanAust after a successful takeover offer.
“The change in control will assist in the realisation of PanAust’s development plans for the project.
“Frieda River remains on track to become a world-class copper-gold operation which will be an important driver of economic growth for local landowners, communities, the provinces of East Sepik and Sandaun and Papua New Guinea as a whole,” Hess said.
Samar noted the good cooperation between government officials and the Frieda River Project.
“The MRA is working closely with PanAust and Highlands Pacific to ensure the full potential of the world-class Frieda River deposit is realised.  Bringing the project to production is an important national priority,” he said.


15) Help on the way

Talebula Kate
Sunday, July 05, 2015

FIJI’S first helpline for women to address issues such as domestic violence is in the pipeline with the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation working towards its establishment.

Women’s Minister Rosy Akbar highlighted in a statement that the women’s helpline will work parallel to the National Child Helpline that is proving to be a success.

“Plans are in pipeline to develop a similar helpline for the women, so that they can report cases and seek information and assistance when dealing with cases of domestic violence.

“There is a need for such a platform to be created. Once the helpline is in place, women can just pick up their phone and dial the toll free number to get advice, assistance of the professional counsellors.

“The child helpline that was launched three months ago has to date received positive reports, well over 1800 calls were made by the children and parents, seeking information and advice on child welfare issues,” Ms Akbar said.

The ministry in partnership with Medical Services Pacific along with Vodafone, Digicel and Telecom Fiji Ltd launched Fiji’s National Child Helpline in April this year.

Mrs Akbar also reiterated on the need for a collaborative approach to address the issues of violence.

“To battle domestic violence in Fiji, requires a co-ordinated effort and partnership between Government ministries and departments, non-government organisations and faith based organisations along with the communities.

“Understanding the existing legislations and laws like Domestic Violence Decree, Child Welfare Decree which is in place.

“It’s also important that communities are made aware of the procedures to access legal services.

“With this the ministry works in partnership with existing stakeholders to provide information and training programs to stop violence,” Mrs Akbar explained.

Ministry’s strengthened partnership with Fiji Police also aims to intensify efforts to tackle issues like domestic violence and child abuse.Fijitimes


16) Men’s basketball beats Nauru

Shalveen Chand On Port Moresby
Sunday, July 05, 2015

THE Fiji men’s basketball team had a flying start in their Pacific Games campaign as they outclassed Nauru 126-52 at the BSP Arena in Taurama, Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea on Friday.

The lop-sided affair was predicted before the start as the Fiji men towered over their much shorter opponents and while Fiji was throwing hoops after hoops during the warm-up, Nauru was missing most of theirs.

Fiji started the game with their strongest five and were soon off to a 10-point gap. By the end of the second quarter, the gap was more than 30-points and by the third it was a 40-point difference.

The barrage of points continued in the last quarter as well.

Captain Marques Whippy led his men gallantly and the fans gathered at the newly built arena even got to witness a few slams.

Whippy said the team did great but the real battle was yet to be faced.

“We still have to fix a few aspects of our games especially with the turnovers, and I think that is fixable,” he said.

Assistant coach Frank Saketa said prior to the game the team had no idea how strong Nauru was.

“We started with our strongest team because we wanted to make a statement with our first game. It also allowed us to get into routine as well because we had a chance to test the bench,” Saketa said.

Fiji defeated New Caledonia 79-58 in their second game yesterday.

* Pacific Games coverage courtesy of BSP – Fijitimes

17) Pacific Games: Fiji soccer creates history

SHALVEEN CHAND in Port Moresby
Sunday, July 05, 2015

Update: 3:07PM THE Fiji U-23 soccer team created history by thrashing Federated States of Micronesia 38-0 in the Pacific Games today.

Fiji led the minnows 21-0 at half time and the goal scoring by the Fijians did not stop until the final minute of the match, which went six minutes into extra time.

In 2001, Australia recorded the highest score of 31-0 against American Samoa in a World Cup qualifying match.

On Friday, the Fiji side were held to a 1-1 draw by Vanuatu while Tahiti thrashed FSM 30-0 at the Pacific Games in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.Fijitimes

18) Pacific Games: Tulo wins first gold for Fiji

SHALVEEN CHAND in Port Moresby
Sunday, July 05, 2015

Update: 5:16PM LIFTER, Manueli Tulo has won Fiji’s first gold medal in the Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea.

He lifted 107 kilograms in his third attempt in the snatch category to take the honours.

Tulo is also tipped to win gold medal in the clean and jerk category later today.Fijitimes

19) New Caledonia Pegged As Pacific Games Favorite
Opening ceremonies get under way tomorrow

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, July 3, 2015) – Papua New Guinea’s Sports Minister says New Caledonia are the biggest threat to top the Pacific Games medal tally.

Basketball, touch rugby, football and table tennis will get the Pacific Games programme underway in Port Moresby this morning, with the opening ceremony tomorrow at the Sir John Guise Stadium.

More than 3000 athletes will contest 28 sports over the next fortnight, while New Zealand and Australia will also make their Games debut.

Justin Tkatchenko said he was confident that Papua New Guinea was completely ready for its hosting duties, and said the Games would showcase and promote the country.

He predicted Papua New Guinea would bring in a sizeable medal haul, but that their biggest challengers would be New Caledonia.

Radio New Zealand International

20) 2 from 2

Shalveen Chand In Port Moresby
Sunday, July 05, 2015

TWO out of two for the Fiji men’s basketball team in the Pacific Games as they defeated New Caledonia 79-58 in the BSP Arena in Taurama, Port Moresby yesterday.

After pulverising Nauru, Fiji had braced for a tough encounter against the defending Games champions and the match was a thriller from the start.

Mataika Koyamainavure sprung to get the ball at the start which saw Johnny Seruvatu get the first points for Fiji.

Fiji had scored six points before New Caledonia registered their first points. It was Fiji’s tough defence and innovative attack that saw them extend their lead to 10 points by the end of the first quarter.

A little lapse in concentration saw New Caledonia just three points adrift at half time. Fiji led 35-32.

Fiji again took control in the third quarter and kept on pushing ahead. Joshua Fox, Marques Whippy and Koyamainavure stood out with their game.

Fiji ended the game with possession and a 21-point lead much to the delight of the Fiji fans.

However, the men’s basketball team has a long journey ahead because after the pool play, Fiji will have to play teams from the other pool and after that the semi-finalists will be decided.

Assistant coach Frank Saketa said they had a game plan.

“We came with a plan and the boys followed the strategy laid out for them which eventuated in the win this afternoon,” he said.

“We came more prepared on the day than they did and this meant the win.”

The win has asserted the men’s team as a hot contender for the gold medal but with the number of the games the team has to play, coach Saula Waqa knows fitness will be the telling factor.Fijitimes

 21) Big scores on first day of Pacific Games

4 July 2015

Tahiti’s footballers grabbed the headlines on the first day of competition at the Pacific Games.

The French Territory thumped the Federated States of Micronesia 30-0, including 20 second-half strikes.

Fred Tissot TEE-SO scored six goals in 25 minutes, two players managed five goals and Raimanu Tetauira completed a four-minute hat-trick in stoppage time.

New Zealand began their bid for Olympic qualification with a 2-0 victory against Solomon Islands, Fiji drew with Vanuatu, while hosts Papua New Guinea went down 1-0 to defending champions New Caledonia.

Team PNG’s first win of the Games was a 24-1 victory against Kiribati in men’s touch rugby, while Samoa and Fiji were among the teams to make a winning start in basketball.

Table tennis, touch and basketball will continue their competitions today before the opening ceremony at the Sir John Guise Stadium.

And tomorrow medals will be up for grabs in weightlifting and triathlon.RNZI

22) Four nations in 2023 World Cup bid race

Sunday, July 05, 2015

LONDON – France, Ireland, Italy and South Africa have been confirmed as bidding for the right to stage to the 2023 World Cup, World Rugby has announced.

The quartet all submitted formal expressions of interest before last month’s deadline but the United States, an emerging rugby union nation decided to focus their attention on the hosting of the 2018 Rugby World Cup Sevens.

A decision on which country will stage the 2023 World Cup will be made in May 2017.

South Africa staged the World Cup in 1995, when the Springboks won the tournament on home soil, while France played host to the 2007 edition.

However, neither Ireland nor Italy, two of Europe’s elite Six Nations, have been the main hosts of a Rugby World Cup.

“The candidate hosts now have a year to benefit from detailed knowledge-sharing and preparation, including digesting the detailed tender requirements and observing Rugby World Cup 2015 hosting, before the confirmation to tender deadline of June 2016,” said Rugby World Cup tournament director Alan Gilpin in a statement.

“The announcement of the Rugby World Cup 2023 host in May 2017 will also provide the successful union with six years to prepare for the delivery of the event and maximise the benefits of observing the delivery of Japan 2019, the first Rugby World Cup to be hosted in Asia.”

23) Williams sisters set for Wimbledon showdown

Sunday, July 05, 2015

LONDON – Serena Williams has set up a Wimbledon last-16 showdown with sister Venus after surviving a major scare as Maria Sharapova also eased into the second week.

Top seed Serena, bidding for a sixth Wimbledon title and already halfway to a calendar grand slam after wrapping up the Australian and French Opens, defeated unseeded Briton Heather Watson 6-2 4-6 7-5 in a Centre Court thriller.

Watson, the world number 59, served for the match at 5-4 in the final set after being a double break up but her nerve failed her against the 33-year-old American she idolised as a child.

“I’ve had some tough losses but that was probably my toughest match playing Heather in front of her home crowd,” said Serena, who is chasing a 21st Grand Slam title.

“She played unbelievable and really I think she should have won the match.”

Venus, also a five-time champion and playing in her 18th Wimbledon, reached the fourth round with a 6-3 6-2 win over Serbia’s Aleksandra Krunic.

Serena will face her 35-year-old sister on Monday for the first time in a grand slam since beating her in the 2009 Wimbledon final.

“We have a lot of respect for each other,” said Venus. “There’s no easy points when we face each other.”

Watson admitted her big chance had passed her by.

“I was two points away from winning the match, so I am pretty disappointed,” said the 23-year-old.


Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1108 ( Monday 29 June 2015 )


1 ) Vanuatu NGOs shocked by MSG outcome

By Online Editor
10:36 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Vanuatu

NGOs in Vanuatu says the Melanesian Spearhead Group decision not to admit West Papua as a full member, but upgrade Indonesia’s membership, is a slap in the face for ni-Vanuatu.

Chiefs and the trade union movement also say they are in shock at last week’s decision.

The chairman of Vanuatu’s West Papua support group, Pastor Alain Nafuki, says he wants the MSG leaders to revisit their decision not to give full membership to the United Liberation Movement for West Papua.

“The purpose of establishing MSG is totally to assist our people who have not gained their rights yet, independence. That was the main reason and I would tell them that they would revisit the reason of why we establish MSG.”

The MSG upgraded Indonesia from observer status to associate member status, while it admitted the United Liberation Movement as an observer.


2a ) Reaching out across Melanesia, MSG leaders endorse engagement with Indonesia and West Papua

By Online Editor
5:07 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Solomon Islands

By Nic Maclellan in Honiara

The five-member Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) has made an historic decision to expand its reach, with the granting of associate member status to Indonesia, and observer status to the United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP).

The decision on West Papua was formally announced at the final plenary of the 20th MSG leaders’ summit, held this week in Honiara.

Summit host Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare of Solomon Islands said “the summit was conducted in the true Melanesian spirit of consensus and dialogue.”

Sogavare was joined in the leaders retreat by Fiji Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill, FLNKS representative Victor Tutugoro of Kanaky/New Caledonia and Johnson Naviti, Director General of the Office of the Prime Minister in Vanuatu.

The ULMWP had applied for full membership of the sub-regional organisation, but in their Thursday retreat, the MSG leaders agreed that “the ULMWP be admitted as an observer under the regional and international category representing Melanesians living abroad.”

Indonesia has been an MSG observer since the 2011 MSG summit in Fiji. This week, in the presence of a delegation led by Indonesian Vice Foreign Minister Dr. A.M. Fachir, the island leaders approved “that associate membership be accorded to Indonesia representing the five Melanesian provinces in Indonesia.”

In the final plenary, the MSG member countries presented closing statements, followed by presentations by the Indonesian Vice Foreign Minister and ULMWP Secretary General Octo Mote. Both acknowledged the historic nature of this week’s decision, but agreed to differ on Indonesia’s human rights record.

In their final communique, the leaders endorsed a series of reports and declarations, covering trade, policing, sports, violence against women, emergency response co-ordination and nuclear waste transhipments through island Exclusive Economic Zones.

A key decision endorsed the Implementation Framework for the MSG 2038 Prosperity for All Plan, an overarching regional strategy adopted at the last summit in Noumea.

With a major focus on trade, finance and connectivity, the leaders call for the finalisation of negotiations on the legal text for the third phase of the MSG Trade Agreement (MSGTA3) by October, before an MSG Trade Ministers Meeting later this year. Papua New Guinea will fund a major study of shipping, as part of a major focus on improving transport networks and communications across the MSG region.

In the closing ceremony, the five country representatives signed agreements establishing a Regional Police Academy and the legislative framework for the creation of an MSG Formed Police Unit (FPU).

As well as an MOU on technical co-operation in coastal fishery and aquaculture and an MSG Roadmap, leaders updated their twenty-year old Lakatoro Declaration on the Denuclearisation of the Pacific, with a new MSG Declaration on the Transhipment of Nuclear Waste and Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Waste.

Solomon Islands has offered to host an MSG youth hub to serve as a centre of excellence on youth development.

Leaders agreed to defer consideration of some issues, including the appointment of a new MSG High Level Representative to replace Ambassador Kaliopate Tavola of Fiji. With reservations expressed by Papua New Guinea, leaders also deferred discussion on proposals to establish an MSG Defence Ministers Meeting.


2b ) Fiji PM pledges full support for MSG

By Online Editor
5:11 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Fiji

Fiji has pledged its support for Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) solidarity.

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama said, “with national unity, a sense of purpose, good governance and equality, opportunity and substantive justice for all, nothing was impossible even for small island nations”.

This was his message at the conclusion of MSG Leaders Summit at the Heritage Park Hotel, Honiara, in the Solomon Islands last Friday.

He congratulated the Solomon Islands government for assuming the chairmanship of the MSG and its role in chairing the Leader’s Summit.

“I am confident that under your leadership over the next two years, we will be able to effectively achieve our collective goals for the benefit of all our peoples.”

He assured them the Fijian Government’s co-operation and support.

“Our final communiqué is a testament to the way in which we have all worked in a positive manner this week to advance the cause of our organisation and the position of all Melanesians,” Mr Bainimarama said.

“We have faced some difficult challenges in reaching a consensus on some of these issues, but I want to commend you all on behalf of the Fijian people for approaching these challenges in an atmosphere of co-operation and goodwill.”

Bainimarama, together with other MSG leaders, pledged to redouble efforts in areas on concern to everyone – trade, the free movement of people across borders and collective response to the challenges of terrorism to name a few.

Bainimarama said, “we have elevated the sovereign power in West Papua – Indonesia – to Associate Member of the MSG.”

“We have also opened the door for the United Liberation Movement for West Papua to join us as an observer,” he said.

“In doing so, Fiji believes we are acting in the best interests of the people in West Papua, as well as maintaining the integrity of the principles on which the MSG was founded and that we must always uphold.”

He said Fiji had been guided by a number of overriding principles in approaching the West Papua issue.

“We are convinced that the best hope for improving the lives of the people of West Papua – is to work closely with the Indonesian Government, to provide encouragement and support in an atmosphere of co-operation and friendship and to encourage it in its current programme to govern West Papua in an inclusive and enlightened manner,” Bainimarama said.

“We cannot erase the history of West Papua and some of the negative aspects of that history, which we acknowledge include significant human rights violations.”

He commended the Indonesian President and his Government for the steps taken to improve conditions in West Papua for its Melanesian population.

He said from Fiji’s perspective, the best way to achieve this was to bring Indonesia closer into the workings of the MSG.

“Which is why we have supported elevating Indonesia from observer status to Associate Member and by strengthening our engagement as an organisation with Indonesia, we are also strengthening our joint co-operation on issues relating to West Papua,” Bainimarama said.

“Fiji is convinced that this is not only the best way to improve the situation for our Melanesian brothers and sisters in West Papua. It is the only way.”

He acknowledged the United Liberation Movement for West Papua, which represents a significant body of opinion in the West Papuan Diaspora and also has the welfare of the West Papuan people at heart.

The ULMWP has now been granted observer status at the MSG. The ULMWP is not the sovereign power in West Papua.

It is an external, non-government organisation that may represent West Papuan interests and opinion.

“But the MSG simply could not give it the status it desired without compromising a fundamental principal.

“That non-government organisation cannot have the same status as governments in our organisation,” Bainimarama said

He appealed to the ULMWP not to regard this as a defeat, but an opportunity.

“You have now been brought into the fold. Use this privilege to also work with us for the betterment of every West Papuan. Working together – Indonesia, the MSG countries and the West Papuan Diaspora – we can achieve much better outcomes for the West Papuan people,” Bainimarama said.

He said Fiji intends to work with its Pacific neighbours to lead the charge at the World Climate Summit in Paris at the end of November.

“Every Pacific country is affected in one way or another and in the case of three nations – Kiribati, Tuvalu and the Marshall Islands – their very existence is threatened by the rising seas,” he said.

“We have our opportunity later this year to get the industrialised nations to finally sign up to the dramatic cuts in carbon emissions that the scientists say are needed to avert catastrophe.

“And it is an opportunity that we must all take.”

He said the measures to promote business activity and co-operation between the private sectors within the MSG countries is an important part of the final communiqué.

He said the meeting of MSG Finance Ministers that concluded in Nadi, Fiji, was a great success.

“I urge you all as leaders to encourage this growing engagement between our various governments at an economic and financial level for the benefit of all our peoples,” Bainimarama said.


3a ) Indonesia Says It Will Help Develop Melanesia
Follows status elevation Melanesian Spearhead Group

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 27, 2015) –The Indonesian government says it hopes to make a positive contribution to economic and developmental challenges in Melanesia.

The leaders of the Melanesian Spearhead Group, which includes Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and the Kanaks of New Caledonia, elevated Indonesia’s status from observer to associate member at the recent MSG Leaders summit in Honiara.

A spokesperson from the Indonesian Embassy in Canberra, Sade Bimantara, says its associate membership is a positive step for Melanesia.

“We believe that we can contribute to the Melanesian Spearhead Group. Add value to that and also to increase connectivity between people in the Asia Pacific with those Melanesian descendants in Indonesia.”

Mr Bimantara says his country’s more than 250 million Indonesians are an untapped market that expands the trading power of the MSG.

Indonesia’s elevation to associate member saw the bid by the United Liberation Movement for West Papua for full MSG membership rejected, though the group has been given observer status as a development partner representing the welfare of Melanesian people living outside.

Radio New Zealand International

3b) ) Vanuatu’s Graon mo Jastis Pati releases MP spending reports

29 June 2015

Members of parliament in one of Vanuatu’s leading political parties have published their allocation spending reports for 2014.

The Graon mo Jastis Pati says its four MPs elected on the party’s ticket in the 2012 election have done this as part of fulfilling the campaign promises they made to their voters.

The four MPs, including party leader Ralph Regenvanu, report that they each deducted US$19,000 from their salaries to spend on community needs.

This amount used to be the allocation granted to each constituency until a change in 2011 saw the money channelled through MPs’ salaries.

The Graon mo Jastis Pati says it wants to ensure this amount is still used strictly for community purposes.

The GJP MPs have each contributed US$7000 dollars from their own allocations to establish academic scholarships schemes in their constituencies.

The four MPs spent more than US$28,000 on community needs last year – with three of them spending more than US$37,000.

The GJP has a fifth MP who joined the party more recently.RNZI

3c ) MP Ralph 2014 alokesen spending ripot: Nidim help blong yufala

Olgeta -

Mi nidim help blong yufala blong mek sua se posta blong spending blong alokesen blong mi long 2014 hemi save kamaot long ol pablik ples long evri ples long Port Vila blong ol pipol i save luk mo ridim.

Mi gat 500 posta, mo mi wantem oli putumap long ol windo blong stoa (insaed long glas), long ol notis bod long ol ofis mo ol jioj mo ol komuniti hol, long ol nakamal, mo long ol kaen ples olsem.

Sipos yu gat wan ples we yu save displeim posta, plis emailem mi afta mi save karem wan i kam blong yu putumap.  Sipos no, ring long mi o kam long Palamen Haos blong pikimap wan posta blong yu.

Tankyu blong givhan long yufala.

Yu save luk posta blong mi long ples ia.

Ta, MP Ralph Regenvanu.


4) Tokelau inflation eases

29 June 2015 U

Inflation appears to have stabilised in Tokelau with just a 0.3 percent increase in the consumer price index in the June quarter.

The Tokelau National Statistician Kele Lui says there was some increase in food prices, alcohol and cigarettes, but the cost of mutton was down significantly.

He says furnishings, household equipment and routine household maintenance products rose significantly due to more expensive timber.

The full year CPI to the end of June was 4.9 percent.RNZI

5) Coronation Of Tonga’s King Tupou VI
Begins 11 days of celebrations

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, June 29, 2015) – Tonga has begun 11 days of celebrations to mark the coronation of monarch King Tupou VI with an ancient kava ceremony and gifts of pigs and yams from the country’s chiefs.

Sitting in a circle wearing traditional ta’ovala mats around their waists, about 150 nobles drank kava from coconut shells in a ceremony dating back centuries.

One of the nobles, an MP and the brother of Queen Nanasipau’u, Lord Vaea, told Pacific Beat that for Tongans, Saturday’s taumafa kava ceremony was the most important event of the coronation.

“We are out there to sit on seats that have been there for hundreds of years,” he said.

“Through them, traditional ties go right back to the land and the sea.”

In the ceremony an ancient Tongan title called Tu’i Kanokupolu, that pre-dates the monarchy by centuries, passes to Tupou VI.

Anthropologist Adrienne L Kaeppler of the Smithsonian Institution said the monarchy traces its ancestry back to the sky god Tangaloa.

“The new king is the 24th Tu’i Kanokupolu, and the taumafa kava confirms his title when he drinks the kava.”

Street parties, black-tie balls, fashion shows and choral recitals will be held over the next week before the king is officially crowned in the capital’s Free Wesleyan Church on July 4.

A large number of dignitaries, including Japan’s Crown Prince Naruhito and an as-yet unnamed member of the British royal family, are also expected to attend.

Tupou VI, a 55-year-old former diplomat, succeeds his brother Tupou V, who died in 2012 after a six-year reign of major reforms that expanded democracy in the nation of about 110,000 people.

Ms Kaeppler said there was still a deep affection for the royals.

“Most of the people are still in awe of the chiefs and the monarchy, but they do have modern ideas influenced by the democratic ways they’ve seen in the US, Australia, New Zealand and so on,” she said.

Lord Vaea said thousands of expatriate Tongans have flown home for the ceremony.

“This is a time when we all come back to the islands from overseas, we work as one people for the coronation,” he said.

“We become realigned with our clans and our different groups.”

Tonga’s monarchy can trace its history back 1,000 years, and by the 13th century the nation wielded power and influence over surrounding islands, including Samoa, nearly 900 kilometres to the east.

Tupou I, who converted to Christianity after coming under the influence of missionaries, was proclaimed king in 1845 after winning control of the monarchy from two other royal lines.

By 1900 the country had become a British protectorate and only acquired its independence in 1970. It remains the only monarchy among Pacific island nations.

Radio Australia

6) Tonga Says Forbes Coverage Payment Worth It
Involves ¼ tourism marketing budget

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) –The Tongan government says it will be paying Forbes magazine US$130,000 this week in return for what it says is unprecedented coverage.

There has been confusion over a deal involving an interview the business magazine conducted with Prime Minister ‘Akilisi Pohiva shortly after he was elected.

The Finance Minister ‘Aisake Eke says the resulting two page advertorial will reach up to seven million people through the magazine.

Dr Eke says it has been included in the June edition, the 2015 Investment Guide, and will also feature online for over a year and will be translated into Chinese.

He says the project is worth it even though it costs around a quarter of the budget available for marketing tourism.

“What we are looking here is the opportunity to get a lot of people world-wide. This is a very high profile magazine not only for potential tourists but also for investors so I think this is unique. I think this is what this special magazine offers, which I think is more than what we have been normally promoting from and for.”

Radio New Zealand International

7) Tonga to issue new currency
By Online Editor
8:43 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Tonga

Tonga will issue new currency notes and coins after the installation of King Tupou VI this week.

Assisted by the Reserve Bank of a Fiji, the Tonga will launch the currency to coincide with the coronation.
Lorraine Seeto, Special Adviser to RBF Governor Barry Whiteside, will be in the kingdom to assist with the launch.

Meanwhile, Fiji Airways flew a second service to Nuku’alofa to cater for additional passengers on the route to attend the coronation.

Tupou VI is expected to be installed traditionally on Saturday followed by a coronation at the Centenary Church.


8) Former American Samoa Official Jailed For Fraud

Awarded contract after soliciting personal loan

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 27, 2015) –A former cabinet member in American Samoa, Evelyn Vaitautolu Langford, has been sentenced to 22 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution of $US 260,000.Langford served under former Governor Togiola Tulafono as director of Human Resources and Governor’s Authorized Representative to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

She pleaded guilty to one count each of wire fraud and bribery.

She admitted asking for and obtaining loans from a company that was awarded a sole source contract of $US 4.7 million by the American Samoa government to provide training for displaced workers following the 2009 tsunami.

The two loans which Langford received from the company Native Hawaiian Holdings Company totalled $US 260,000.

Radio New Zealand International

9) Samoa Street Vendors To Face Prosecution
Enforcement of new law

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) –Street vendors in Samoa will face prosecution when police start enforcing a new law banning people from selling goods in front of shops and around town areas.

A police spokesperson, Su’a Muli’aga Tiumalu, says the Prime Minister has correctly said the new Fugalei market in Apia and other markets are available for small business operations.

Mr Tiumalu says the police have given steet vendors enough time to shift their businesses to the markets, and will start prosecuting people from next month.

Radio New Zealand International

10) Cooks Calls For Disaster Ready Buildings
Need to be ready for climate change induced events

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) –The Cook Islands Finance Minister says because of climate change, key infrastructure needs to be built with the expectation it will be hit more often and more severely by natural disasters.

Mark Brown has been in Fiji for a high level forum facilitated by the International Monetary Fund on disaster risk reduction.

He says they’re looking at the impact disasters have on the economy and how quickly they are able to rebound financially.

Mr Brown says preparation is key, like having emergency response plans in place beforehand, and key infrastructure built and maintained to withstand more frequent disasters.

“To take into account the impact of stronger storms, things like airports, roads, ports, all have to be built with the expectation that they will be hit. But if they’re built and engineered to be able to withstand severe disasters, that helps the country get back and rebound faster.”

Mr Brown says the Cook Islands has established its own emergency response fund, and has ongoing significant investment in infrastructure upgrades.

Radio New Zealand International

11) Minimum wage $6.25 from July 1

By Online Editor
8:42 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Cook Islands

Employers and workers in Cook Islands are reminded that the minimum wage rate of pay will increase to $6.25  (US$4.26)per hour from 1 July 2015, a rise from the current minimum wage rate of $6 per hour (US$4), in accordance with the Employment Relations (Minimum rate of pay) Regulations 2015.

The increase is a result of the review by the Minimum Wage Panel appointed by the Minister for Internal Affairs Albert Nicholas under the Employment Relations Act 2012 and guided by terms of reference, criteria, and public feedback.

The Minimum Wage Panel submitted the 2015 Minimum Wage Rate Review Report to Nicholas in March.

This year’s Minimum Wage Panel comprised Patricia Tuara Demmke (Ministry of Internal Affairs), James Webb (Ministry of Finance and Economic Management), Steve Anderson (Chamber of Commerce), Anthony Turua (Cook Islands Workers Association) and Nga Mataio (community representative).


12) Cooks Govt official accused of abuses

29 June 2015

A Cook Islands Government financial manager has been exposed in a report tabled in Parliament.

Sarah Samuels has been accused of abusing her position of power at the Business Trade and Investment Board in 2013.

The report says Ms Samuels overpaid her brother and paid for a number of personal expenses with Board funds without the authority of the chief executive officer, Terry Rangi.

The report also says Mr Rangi failed in his duties, by pre-signing cheques without adequate monitoring of their use and letting mismanagement slide.

The report says Ms Samuels used Board funds to pay for personal newspaper announcements, phone cards and airfares.

The Audit Director, Allen Parker, says there were poor internal controls, and referred the matter to the police.

In a letter responding to the review in November last year, Mr Rangi said Ms Samuel’s father had repaid the outstanding amounts.RNZI


13) Former Palau VP facing criminal charges
By Online Editor
8:34 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Palau

Former Vice President and Minister of Finance of the Republic of Palau, who served under the Johnson Toribiong administration, is facing serious criminal charges.

Interim Special Prosecutor Robert Charles Lee filed three criminal charges against former VP Kerai Mariur on June 17, 2015, including one count of violation of code of ethics and one count of misconduct in public office.

Mariur has yet to publicly respond to the charges against him. Until he is properly served, the public has no access to the case file and details therein.

Mariur is the second high-ranking government official from the previous administration to face criminal charges.

Former Ngiwal governor and now the state’s current House of Delegates representative, Masasinge Arurang, was the first to face criminal charges following Lee’s appointment. In March this year, Arurang pleaded guilty to one count of violation of ethics and one count of misconduct in public office for the illegal sale of a personal vehicle through the state government.


14) Suspended Nauru MP In Limbo

‘Security risk to nation’ cannot get passport to go to NZ

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) –A suspended opposition MP on Nauru says he’s frustrated at the Supreme Court’s decision to defer his appeal to get his passport back for two weeks.

Roland Kun’s passport was cancelled by the government after protests a week ago, preventing him from returning to New Zealand where he has been living since his suspension from parliament last year.

He says the Justice Minister, David Adeang, wrote to him explaining the cancellation was because he was deemed to be a security risk to the nation.

Mr Kun denies this and has applied for a judicial review of the government’s decision, but the court on Saturday deferred hearing the application until July the eighth.

Mr Kun says the decision is incredibly frustrating as he had nothing to do with the protests at parliament.

“It is very frustrating and it’s placing great strain on my family and it just adds to the frustration I’m facing at the moment that we’re just constantly facing deferment on getting my issues heard.”

Radio New Zealand International

15) Concerns Pacific neighbour Nauru is moving towards a dictatorship

By Online Editor
8:38 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Nauru

A Wellington family has been forcibly separated from its father and husband as concerns mount over democracy on the island of Nauru.

Growing tension and reports of restrictions on freedom have drawn the attention of the New Zealand Government.

The Wellington-based Kun family have been forcibly separated from their Nauru opposition MP dad, Roland Kun. When he boarded his plane to join them in New Zealand he was hauled off by Nauruan officials and had his passport cancelled.

“I was deemed a risk to the nation. And the other reason was there were criminal investigations with which I was directly linked,” Kun told ONE News in a telephone interview.

The criminal investigation relates to protests last week at Parliament. Three opposition MPs have been charged, two of them imprisoned, accused by the Government of trying to destabilise it.  Kun is under investigation, having been suspended from Parliament a year ago.

“We are concerned to hear that there have been steps taken that might impinge on the liberties of individuals, and particularly elected representatives,” says Murray McCully, New Zealand Foreign Minister.

The arrests are the latest in what critics say are moves towards a dictatorship. The Nauruan Government has suspended five opposition MPs, banned the use of Facebook, deported outspoken foreigners and introduced a law where threatening public order can result in up to seven years in jail.

“It’s an attempt to try and stifle democracy in a way that is not good for the future of the country,” says Dr Steven Ratuva of Canterbury University.

New Zealand gives $2 million a year towards Nauru’s justice system and wants some answers over recent events.  McCully will be meeting with Nauru’s president early next month, but it’s also drawing international attention.

“It’s serious enough for the Pacific Islands Forum to seriously look at what it can do,” says Dr Ratuva.

The Nauru Government insists it is upholding law and order, looking after the best interests of its people. But those on the receiving end, including the Kun family, are paying a harsh price.


16) Advocate: No Longer Fear In Speaking Out In CNMI
Follows former governor corruption sentencing

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) – An anti-corruption advocate in the Northern Marianas says people are no longer afraid to speak up about corruption after last week’s sentencing of the former governor. Benigno Fitial was sentenced to one in year in jail after he was convicted of misconduct in public office and conspiracy to commit theft of services while he was governor until 2013.

Fitial had shielded his former attorney general as he fled the territory to avoid a penal summons, and released a prisoner in the middle of the night to give him a back massage.

Glen Hunter, who was one of the first people to speak out about the case, says corruption under Fitial had pervaded many branches of law enforcement, and it was up to the people to speak up.

He says there are still concerns about corruption in the CNMI, but things have greatly improved.

“It’s going to be an ongoing battle and it’s going to be an ongoing struggle out here a little bit to fight public corruption and I don’t think there’s every an end goal anywhere in the world. But what I’ve noticed is, since the first people started speaking out – there was a strong climate of fear prior to…that climate of fear is gone, it’s dissipated, there’s almost no more sense of fear at least, people can speak openly.”

Radio New Zealand International

17) US Navy Hails New Report On CNMI Training
Claims training will not jeopardize endangered species

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) – The United States Navy has welcomed a biological report indicating its proposed training plans will not jeopardise endangered species in the Northern Marianas.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Marine Fisheries report says ‘accidental kills’ estimated by the Navy will not destroy the animals or their habitats.

The US Mariana Islands Training and Testing Project Manager, John Van Name says the report backs up a lot of the work already done by the Navy.

Mr Van Name says it also includes mitigation procedures that will be used when conducting sonar detection or mine detonation exercises.

He says this will include specialist lookouts for marine life and stand-downs if any is present.

Mr Van Name says the independent report should ease the environmental concerns of opponents.

“I hope it will because the National Marine Fisheries Service, it’s their biological opinion, it’s there conclusion of what the impacts and effects might be of the Navy training.”

Radio New Zealand International


18) NZ provides funding for Fiji audit software
By Online Editor
10:42 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Fiji

The New Zealand Government through its NZ Aid Programme will provide funding to the Fijian Government for the purchase and implementation of audit management software.

The software known as Team Mate will help to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of internal audits undertaken by the Ministry of Finance.

Speaking after signing the Grant Funding Agreement (GFA) in Suva today, Permanent Secretary for Finance,  Filimoni Waqabaca said the software which is used by more than 53,000 internal auditors in 1500 countries will increase the speed of processing data and will help them meet international standards.

“We are grateful to the New Zealand Government for its support and we are eagerly awaiting the full implementation of the software system. The training and system setup will commence in early August and we should be fully complaint and ready to use the software by the end of August.”

“The Auditor General’s office is also using the same software so now we will be connected to them automatically through the software and it will be easier to use and transmit data through the automated process.”
“The software will also help us in addressing recurring audited issues and will bring about a lot of efficiency.”

New Zealand High Commissioner, Mark Ramsden said the NZ Government has provided a grant of approximately FJD$620,000 (US$295,180) to purchase specialised audit software, upgrade associated hardware and support to the salaries of two new technical staff who are being brought on to help implement the system over the next two years.

“We anticipate the new internal audit system will ultimately contribute a better control of public funds and resources and improve governance and risk management across the whole of Government.”

He said the investment to acquire software and automate internal auditing is quite modest in comparison to the expected improvement and time-saving the new system is likely to offer.

The project will be managed by the Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) unit of the Ministry of Finance while the Government Information Technology and Computing Services will provide technical support to assist in the installation, implementation and maintenance of the auditing system once it is established.


19) Academic: More Focus On Gender Equality Needed In Pacific

Should be priority for more NZ aid

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) – An academic says a review of New Zealand’s aid programme shows New Zealand is neglecting issues such as gender equality and human rights.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development has released its five yearly peer review of the country’s aid funding.

Terence Wood of the Australia National University says given extraordinarily high rates of domestic violence in the region, it is odd that New Zealand’s Foreign Minister, Murray McCully, does not put greater priority on gender issues.

“Under the current government, what’s called in aid jargon “cross-cutting issues” such as human rights and gender, have been really neglected and this, I think, reflects the fact that the minister doesn’t view such issues as important for development work.”

Terence Wood says he agrees with the report’s findings that New Zealand needs to give more aid.

Radio New Zealand International


20) Ol West Papua Grup igat MSG Observor luksave

Updated 26 June 2015, 16:03 AEST
Sam Seke

Melanesian Spearhead Group Leaders miting long Honiara i wanbel pinis long givim Observer Status long ol pipol blong West Papua thru long United Liberation Movement for West Papua.

Odio: Sam Seke i ripot long tingting blong MSG lidas long givim Observor status long West Papua United Liberation Front
Odio: Benny Wenda, tokman blong ol United Liberation Movement for West Papua i toktok wantem Sam Seke

Melanesian Spearhead Group Leaders miting long Honiara i wanbel pinis long givim Observer Status long ol pipol blong West Papua thru long United Liberation Movement for West Papua.

Papua New Guinea Praim Minista Peter O’Neill nau i itokaut long dispela aste nait, pastaim long MSG Secretariat i itokaut long wanpela Joint Communiqué long ol samting ol lida ibin wanbel longen.

Long wankain taim, Mr O’Neill i tok ol MSG lida i wanbel long apim moa status blong Indonesia lusim Observer igo long Associate Member.

Ol United Liberation Movement for West Papua i bin askim long kamap Full memba long Melanesian Spearhead Group, ino Observer Status.

Na dispela disisin blong ol MSG Lida i bringim ol kaen kaen wari na bikpla tinging long lida na pipol long Melanesia husat i kampen strong long sapotim ol West Papua.

Gavana blong Oro Province long Papua New Guinea, Gary Juffa i tokim Pacific Beat olsem, dispela tingting emi i givim sampela luksave long ol West Papua long MSG.

Tasol Member blong West Makira long Solomon Islands palamen, Derrick Manuari i tok solidariti muvmen blong ol ino hamamas long dispela MSG disisin.

Mr Manuari i tok bai ol i gohet long fait long sapotim West Papua thru long MSG em Solomon Islands i nau chair longen.

Long wankain taim, ol United Liberation Movement for West Papua i tok ol i hamamas long ol Melanesian Spearhead Lida i wanbel long givim Observer Status long ol.

Tokman blong ol, Benny Wenda i tok ol ibin kempen had wantaim sapot blong ol pipol long rijin, na dispela i wanpela step klostu long kamap memba blong MSG.ABC

21) Ol pipal smagla i yusim boda blong PNG na Indonesia

Postim 29 June 2015, 16:02 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Het blong polis long Western Provins blong Papua New Guinea i toaut long ol wok i stap long kisim hait ol pipol igo long Australia.

PNG gavman imas strongim wok sekiuriti long boa blong kantri
Provinsal polis komanda long Western Provins we Daru istap long en, Silva Sika itok ol pipal smagla nau istat long iusim ol bodamak namel long Papua New Guinea na Indonesia long bringim hait ol pipal igo insait long Australia.

Mr Sika i tok olsem bihain long ol i bin stopim tripla pipal blong India long Western Provins na bringim ol igo long Port Moresby haus kalabus aste.

Long wik igo pinis, Komisina blong polis long PNG Gary Baki ibin tokaut olsem emi lukim Daru town bai nap kamap olsem wanpla ples we ol trabalman na peopkle smugglers isave iusim long bringima hait ol pipal long Australia.

Ol nambis blong Papua New Guinea istap olsem 4 pela kilomita tasol longwe long Saibai Island long Australia.

Nau Mr Sika itok National gavman imas tingting gut nau long lukautim ol bodamak na national sikiuriti blong en.ABC

22) PNG i sting long korapsan: Sam Basil

Updated 29 June 2015, 16:10 AEST

Caroline Tiriman

Deputy Oposisan Lida long Papua New Guinea, Sam Basil i tok PNG emi sting tru long korapsan.

PNG lawyer, Harvey Maladina
Mr Basil i sutim tok tu long ol niusman-meri long PNG long ol imas sem long oli no wok strong long tokaut long despla heve.

Em i mekim dispela toktok bihaen long Special Broadcasting Service blong Australia ibin tokaut olsem tupla sinia lawyer ibin tokaut long ol rot em ol pipal iken bihaenim long surikim ol korap moni namel long Australia na Papua New Guinea.

Despla tupla Lawyer, Greg Sheppard na Harvey Maladina ibin tokim despla televisan progrem long SBS long Tunde nait olsem igat ol kaen kaen wei em ol pipal iken salim moni lusim PNG ikam long Australia.

Siaman bifo blong Anti korapsan laen, Task Force Sweep, Sam Koim ibin askim Australia long lukluk long despla kaen pasin na wokbung wantem PNG long stopim ol PNG pipal isave surikim moni ikam long Australia.ABC

23) Pacific Games medal winas bai kisim PNG Bilum

Updated 26 June 2015, 14:39 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Pasin blong givim bilum long narapla man oa meri emi soim bikpla luksave na wanbel igo long husat i kisim despla bilum.

Odio: Florence Kamel blong Jauka Bilum Products blong Goroka itoktok wantem Caroline Tiriman

Pasin blong givim bilum long narapla man oa meri emi soim bikpla luksave na wanbel igo long husat i kisim despla bilum.

Florence Kamel blong Jauka Bilum Products blong Goroka i mekim despla toktok taem oli wok long redi-im ol bilum blong givim igo long ol sportsman-meri em bai kisim ol Pacific Games medal long mun bihaen.

Laen blong Pacific Games Organising Committee iwok bung wantem ol mama long Port Moresby na ol mama blong Eastern Highlands provins.

Bilum emi wanpla samting emi sanap makim Papua New Guinea stret, olsem na oli laikim ol medal winas long kisim wanpla liklik hap blong PNG taem oli go bek long ol ples blong ol.

2015 Pacific Games bai stat long Port Moresby long namba 4 July igo inap long namba 18 July.ABC


24) Brèves du Pacifique – lundi 29 juin 2015

Mis à jour 29 June 2015, 16:08 AEST

Élodie Largenton

La table-ronde australienne sur le climat : c’est le nom d’un groupe hétéroclite qui vient de se former pour pousser le gouvernement à définir une politique claire en matière d’environnement. 

(Credit: ABC)
Entreprises, syndicats, investisseurs ou encore organisations environnementales ont décidé de faire cause commune, alors que la grande conférence de Paris sur le climat approche et que l’Australie n’a toujours pas annoncé son objectif en matière de réductions d’émissions de gaz à effet de serre. On veut une stabilité politique, explique le directeur général du groupe industriel AI Group, Innes Willox : « Depuis dix ans, les politiques menées ne cessent de changer du tout au tout et on n’en peut plus. Il faut qu’on arrive à se mettre d’accord et comme cela, quand on ira à Paris, on pourra s’appuyer sur ces principes et tous défendre la même ligne. » Ce qui est en jeu, selon lui, c’est la stabilité économique du pays.
Une enquête a été lancée en Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée après la diffusion d’un reportage à la télévision australienne, montrant des avocats papous en train d’expliquer comment blanchir de l’argent sale en Australie sans se faire repérer. Plusieurs plaintes ont été déposées, indique le gouvernement papou, et le Premier ministre, Peter O’Neill, demande à l’Australie de l’aider à mener l’enquête. Rappelons que le dirigeant papou a été formellement accusé de fraude et de blanchiment d’argent, il y a un an.
D’ordinaire peu bavard, le gouvernement de Nauru communique pour donner sa version des faits. À la suite d’une manifestation devant le Parlement, trois députés de l’opposition ont été arrêtés et sont actuellement en prison. Il ne s’agissait pas d’une manifestation, mais d’une émeute, affirment les autorités. La menace est bien réelle, et plusieurs policiers ont été blessés, déclare le ministre de la Justice, David Adeang. Il annonce qu’une vidéo des événements sera bientôt diffusée pour prouver tout cela. Rappelons qu’un autre député de l’opposition a vu son passeport être annulé, officiellement « pour raisons de sécurité ».
Aux Îles Fidji, un député suspendu prend la tête du principal parti d’opposition, le Sodelpa. Le mois dernier, Ratu Naiqamaa été exclu du Parlement pour deux ans, après avoir insulté une députée du parti au pouvoir. Il a été élu président du Sodelpa samedi dernier, au cours d’une assemblée générale du parti. Il est chargé de définir la stratégie de l’opposition en vue des élections de 2018.
Le gouvernement des Îles Cook assure ne pas se sentir menacé par l’opposition. Depuis plusieurs semaines, l’équipe d’Henry Puna est sous le feu des critiques, accusée notamment de vouloir se détacher de la Nouvelle-Zélande. Des rumeurs de tentatives de renversement sont régulièrement rapportées et le gouvernement cherche à abréger les débats sur le budget. Il faut dire que le Premier ministre ne dispose que d’une très faible majorité – une seule voix de plus que l’opposition. Malgré cela, le bureau du Premier ministre assure que le gouvernement travaille normalement. Les critiques viennent de l’opposition, mais la population tient à ce que cette équipe continue de gouverner, affirme le directeur de cabinet d’Henry Puna.ABC.


25) Position of PIDF Secretary General advertised
By Online Editor
8:33 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Fiji

The position of Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Development Forum has been advertised but Fiji citizens will not be accepted.

Fijian diplomat Amenatave Yauvoli held the post in an acting capacity until recently.

He is expected to join the regional environment programme, SPREP. The PIDF is a regional organization set up to counter the influence of the Pacific Islands Forum Srcretariat and it’s major sponsors, Australia and New Zealand.

An advertisement in local newspapers specifically noted that the position was available to citizens of all small island developing states except Fiji.

The successful applicant will be expected to have a strong background in strategic leadership, research and development, organizational management and membership support services.



26) Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank: Australia sixth biggest shareholder in China bank

Updated 29 June 2015, 18:45 AEST
By Huey Fern Tay in Beijing

Australia has become a major shareholder in the first China-led multilateral institution, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).

Representatives from 50 countries, including Treasurer Joe Hockey, took part in a signing ceremony of the articles of agreement at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

China’s finance ministry said seven other countries that applied to join did not sign the agreement because they did not yet have domestic approval.

China is the largest shareholder in the bank, with a stake of 30.34 per cent.

Australia is the sixth largest, committing around $930 million over five years to finance infrastructure projects in Asia.

The private sector will also be involved.

Australia, the United States and Japan once shared concerns about the way the AIIB would be governed.

However Australia signalled its readiness to join the bank a few months ago.

In a statement the Treasurer’s office said: “All members will be directly involved in the direction and decision-making of the bank in an open and transparent manner”.

China is keeping the door open for anyone else who wants to join the multilateral institution that they hope to have fully operational by the end of the year.

China’s vice minister for finance, Shi Yaobin, said potential additional members have until then to sort out their “internal procedure”.

The United States and Japan have not announced a change of heart.

The AIIB is considered a major foreign policy success for China and is seen as a challenger to the US-led World Bank and Japan-led Asian Development Bank.

Beijing has repeatedly assured others the AIIB that was first proposed in October 2013 will complement existing international institutions.ABC


27) Heart by-pass surgery now available in PNG

29 June 2015

Coronary artery bypass surgery is now available in Papua New Guinea after Pacific International Hospital made history by conducting two operations.

The Post Courier reports the hospital’s deputy chair Mathias Sapuri as saying he was proud to announce the surgery could now be done in the country.

Dr Sapuri says it is historic as the hospital can now conduct open heart operations for all conditions at all times and people won’t have to travel or wait for the annual open heart programme.RNZI


28) Peer pressure blamed for rise in drug abuse

Atasa Moceituba
Monday, June 29, 2015

PEER pressure is the common reason students experiment with drugs.

This was revealed by police chief operations officer ACP Rusiate Tudravu during the Drug Awareness program at Ratu Kadavulevu School last week.

Mr Tudravu said drugs challenged children to indulge in unhealthy behaviours.

With marijuana, glue sniffing and alcohol identified as the most common forms of drugs used by youths in Fiji, he said the challenge now was to stop and convince youths and students from abusing these substances.

He said marijuana was the most common form of drug in circulation.

“Reasons young people have given for taking drugs are to fit in, to escape or relax, to relieve boredom, to seem grown-up, to rebel or to experiment,” Mr Tudravu said.

He said most of those found either planting or using marijuana were under the age of 25.

Mr Tudravu reminded students they must be equipped with the right knowledge in order to face the challenges ahead.

He said everything started at home and lack of respect was one of the reasons people took drugs.

“Drugs affect more than just you.

“If you love and appreciate everything your parents and teachers are doing for your education, then stay away from drugs.”FijiTimes

29) Reddy: Education audit reveals abuse of grants

Monday, June 29, 2015

Update: 5:40PM AN audit carried out by the Ministry of Education revealed that 20 per cent of school managements abused grants given to them by the Government.

Speaking at the Northern Division School Association Management in Labasa, Education Minister Doctor Mahendra Reddy said he expected the figures to rise as the audit continued.

Dr Reddy said this was one of the reasons they were forming alliances with school management associations around the country after beginning in the West last month.

“You have been given the powers under the Education Act to be the custodians of the school while the head teacher will deal with operational matters of the school,” he said.Fijitimes

30) Fiji Higher Education Commission first in the region
By Online Editor
8:26 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Fiji

The Fiji Higher Education Commission has established itself as the first external quality assurance agency for tertiary education to be entered in the Regional Register.

An international team appointed by the Asia Pacific Quality Register(APQR) visited the institution to review their operations at the invitation of the Commission.

The international review team paid a courtesy visit to the Minister for Education  Dr Mahendra Reddy this week to discuss issues regarding the review undertaken at the Fiji Higher Education Commission.

The review team comprised of Professor Colin Peiris, Professor Dr Jianxn Zhang and Dr Jeannette Baird. The three experts have a wealth of experience chairing international panels and spearheading many quality assurance programmes.

Minister Reddy expressed his appreciation to the group for their work and said that this will assist in raising the standard of delivery in the higher education sector.

“This will greatly boost the vision of the government to have a knowledge based society and to fully equip the national intellectual capital. This quality assurance review will surely ensure that there is improvement in the systems and processes which will have a positive impact in the quality of students trained in higher education sectors,” Minister Reddy said.

The review panel will make a report to the APQR with recommendation. The report will also include suggestions for further improvements.

The chairperson of the review team, Professor Collin Peiris said that it is fair to say that the panel has been deeply impressed by the achievement of the FHEC in a short period of five years. He added that the team is grateful for the initiative shown by FHEC in asking for this review on international standards for quality assurance agencies for Tertiary Education.

Minister Reddy stated this quality assurance review will certainly assist in addressing the problems faced by industries on the quality of output churned by tertiary training providers.

“This review will have a direct bearing on the training providers and the impact will boost our national intellectual capital to have that competitive edge in the labour market,” Minister Reddy said…PACNEWS



31) Lalabalavu leads SODELPA party
By Online Editor
5:03 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Fiji
Suspended Fijian parliamentarian Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu is SODELPA’S new president.

This was revealed by  Fiji Opposition leader Ro Teimumu Kepa , following the party’s AGM on the weekend.

Ro Teimumu said Ratu Naiqama has been voted in as president, replacing Ratu Silivenusi Waqausa, who tendered his resignation some months ago.

She said representatives and members of the party who were present at yesterday’s AGM voted Ratu Naiqama to be the president for the next two years.

“We all looking to his contribution, because this is the first time that he is holding any position in the party and we really look forward to his contribution in terms of work and what the party needs to do in regard to the Nadave workshop that was held last year,” Ro Teimumu said.

“He will take up his post straight after the AGM because the formalisation has gone through.”

She said the party was grateful for everything Ratu Silivenusi had done for them.

“He was our president and we are very grateful to him for being a leader through the difficult times from pre-election and post election,” she said.



32) Dion: Foreigners should respect law, people

The National, Monday June 29th, 2015

DEPUTY Prime Minister Leo Dion has warned of what he has described as “a very dangerous trend developing in the country that Papua New Guineans should be aware of”.
He said while the country welcomed foreign-owned companies to invest in the country and create employment, they should respect the people and abide by the country’s laws.
“Foreigners must not indulge in our internal politics and use the power of money to take sides and influence politics and administrative decision-making,” he said.
“There is a trend of unfair competitive advantage in the allocation of prime land to 100 per cent foreign-owned business and companies in Kokopo and indeed for that matter in East New Britain and around the country.
“We must not condone heavy-handed tactics and intimidation that cause suffering and human rights violations at the hands of foreigners in our own land at the expense of economic developments.
“We must resolve these matters through peaceful means.”
He said land must remain “our birth right and the government through the Minister for Commerce Trade and Industry Richard Maru was progressing a policy with legislation to ensure equity participation by our indigenous people with foreign-owned companies.”
He said illegal squatting on State land and traditional land was a growing concern that should be addressed through existing strategies like the land mobilisation, land settlement and the urban and regional development policy of the provincial government. “Unless we take control of this now, this trend will become a time bomb that will explode in a similar situation like what we have seen in Honiara, the Solomon Islands, a few years back.”


33) Fiji Television handed 12 year broadcast licence
By Online Editor
5:16 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Fiji

Fiji Television Limited’s broadcast license has been extended to 12 years.

Attorney General and Communications Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum made the announcement saying this extension comes with certain conditions.

Fiji Television was allocated the license to headline the spectrum allocation as well.

“As with other broadcast licence holders; what will happen is Fiji TV is that as soon as the switch over from analog to digital switch takes place, this licence will than be valid to reflect the digital spectrum and obviously number of changes takes place.

For the first time in Fiji’s history we have got such specific spectrum allocation for each of the separate stations. For example, you have different stations throughout Fiji. Each station is given specific spectrum and the conditions under which they operate as it is done with everyone else and we have the Fiji TV broadcasting licence for a period of 12 years. Obviously this is all going to change once we have digital television in place,” Sayed-Khaiyum said.

It’s welcomed news for the company as the country prepares to move onto the digital broadcast platform.

“This is a good step forward. Going forward on compliance and financial purposes for strategic reasons  for Fiji TV has to increase its local content. Financially its really good for us to improve and also our audience who have been watching all the important programmes they want local content. So going forward we will see a much more number of local content,” FHL chief executive, Nouzab Fareed said.

Fiji TV’s six month broadcast license was to expire on 30 June.



34) Fijians given ultimatum to declare offshore accounts within 4 months
By Online Editor
5:15 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Fiji

Fijians will need to declare their offshore accounts in the next four months.

According to Fiji’s Attorney General, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, the new deadline is 15 October.

Government amnesty period has been extended until then.

“We had so far about $13.5 million (US$6.4 million) worth of assets have been declared by Fijians. Now this extension is until the 15th of October. we are giving people more time. A lot more people are finding the will now to come forward and declare these assets,” Sayed-Khaiyum said.

Sayed-Khaiyum says going forward from 2016, certain taxable charges will be levied.

Severe penalties will be taxed on Fiji citizens who pay taxes here but fail to declare their offshore accounts.

“I want to assure all these people who have assets offshore; please feel free to come forward and declare your assets. If you don’t and we discover, there will be very heavy penalties,” the attorney general added.

Meanwhile, the Fijian Government has applauded the Fiji National Provident Fund’s financial performance.

As a result, the FNPF has been able to declare an interest of 6 percent for financial year June 30th 2015

This means the Fund will pay out 224.8 million (US$107.7 million) in interest to members last week.

“These rates of return are actually certified by accruals. It is also certified that there is enough solvency. In other words you have a solvency ticket to say there is enough funds to look after everybody even after they retire,” said the attorney general, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.


35 ) PNG PM: Melanesia Will Benefit From PNG Economy
PNG growth been over 9% for last decade

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 27, 2015) –Papua New Guinea’s prime minister, Peter O’Neill says the economic wealth and prosperity of Papua New Guinea must be shared, and benefit all Melanesian countries.

Mr O’Neill was speaking when commissioning the Papua New Guinea chancery in Honiara, Solomon Islands.

He says PNG businesses are slowly spreading to the other Melanesian countries, not to be dominant, but to share their economic success by creating jobs and generating tax income for local governments.

Mr O’Neill says PNG’s economy is growing at a rate of 9-percent for the past 10 to 14 years, and it will continue to grow at the same rate for the next 10 to 14 years time.

Peter O’Neill says PNG plans to open a chancery in Paris, and also one in Suva.

Radio New Zealand International


36) High Level Inquiry Into PNG Law Firm
Corruption charges over bribes to Aus politicians

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 29, 2015) –A Papua New Guinea lawyer has denied that he has been advising people on how to funnel corrupt money from PNG into Australia.

In secretly-filmed video broadcast by the Australian broadcaster SBS last week, PNG lawyer Greg Sheppard was shown saying the only way to bribe foreign politicians was in small amounts, disguised as commercial transactions.

However, he denies any wrongdoing, and says he was misinterpreted. He says it is a crime to film someone without their permission.

The allegations aired in the SBS documentary have prompted a high-level inquiry in PNG, with the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff, Issac Lupari, saying a number of serious claims were aired.

The investigation will cover all government cases being handled by Mr Sheppard’s firm, Young and Williams.

Radio New Zealand International


37) PNG breaking international law by restricting movement of refugees on Manus Island, says UN

By Online Editor
8:37 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea is breaking international law by restricting the freedom of movement of refugees on Manus Island, the United Nations says.

Refugees who are part of the Australia-funded offshore processing system remain effectively under “island arrest” until the PNG government approves a resettlement policy, which was due to be completed a year ago.

Iranian civil engineer Reza Mollagholipour thought he was doing the right thing and organised job interviews in Port Moresby. He borrowed money for a flight to prepare for his new life as a refugee in PNG.

But his plans and his spirits were crushed when PNG’s chief migration officer forbade him to travel.

“I am really confused … I don’t know why I was given a PNG document and work permit [but] I am not allowed to leave Manus Island,” Mollagholipour said in a letter to PNG and Australian officials earlier this month.

“Let’s show the world that you are not lower than developed countries and that you are planning very well with this new project for your country.”

There are currently 43 men in the same position as Mollagholipour.

Their asylum applications have been processed, they have been released from detention and are living at the Australia-funded Lorengau transit centre on Manus Island.

Almost two years after former prime minister Kevin Rudd signed the Refugee Resettlement Agreement with PNG, no refugees have been resettled.

Those waiting say the legal limbo has added to their anguish.

“What makes me crazy is that everything they are telling about the law … which law? I leave detention and I’m free, you told me I’m free,” Mollagholipour said.

A spokesman for the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) said the travel restrictions imposed on the men was not legal.

“Under international law, the fundamental right to liberty and the prohibition of arbitrary detention applies to all people regardless of their immigration or other status, including asylum seekers and refugees,” the UNHCR spokesman said.

“Contracting states to the 1951 Refugee Convention are obliged to provide refugees lawfully within their territory the right to choose their place of residence to move freely within its territory, subject to limited exceptions.”

PNG has defended its right to stop refugees leaving Manus Island.

“The government of PNG does not want to restrict any freedoms of refugees and does not do so lightly,” PNG’s acting chief migration officer, Esther Gaegaming, said in a statement.

“However, we also have a duty of care to ensure that refugees are adequately prepared to successfully and safely settle in Papua New Guinea.”

Gaegaming said PNG’s government was confident of its legal footing.

“The state solicitor of PNG has provided advice that the instruction of the chief migration officer [to restrict travel] is compliant with PNG’s constitution, the Migration Act 1978, and the Ministerial Instrument gazetted under S15C of that act.”

But refugee law expert Madeline Gleeson from the University of New South Wales has questioned PNG’s legal position.

“Domestic law and policy must be consistent with the legal obligations that states voluntarily assume under international law,” she said.

“International law recognises that there may be cases where some limits on a person’s freedom of movement may be necessary, and so certain exceptions that accommodate this reality are built into the human rights standard itself,” she said.

“Preventing refugees from leaving Manus Island to attend job interviews does not appear to be a reasonable and proportionate way of achieving one of the objectives that would justify such a restriction, such as the protection of national security, the rights of others, or public order, health or morals, and may be discriminatory,” she said



38) Recycling machines to preserve environment

Josaia Ralago
Monday, June 29, 2015

A LABASA company has invested millions of dollars into recycling machines in an effort to preserve the environment.

PINTO Industries Ltd has set a benchmark for other companies in the North through its mission to encourage the communities to keep a clean environment.

Speaking at the Duavata Northern Crime Prevention Carnival last week, the company’s managing director, Nileshni Narayan, said they had been working to ensure that littering was minimised in the North.

While she was unable to reveal the cost of the machines, Mrs Narayan said it was important for people to know the reasons to save the environment.

“As the manufacturer of plastic and drink bottles in the Northern Division, we are investing millions of dollars every year in importing raw materials, buying machinery and employing people in our factory to manufacture all types of plastic products.

“These products are sold and used by all of us in our homes, workplace, communities, towns and cities, locally and abroad.

“Our company has purchased additional machines to recycle our waste plastic products.”Fijitimes


39) PNG minister says seafloor mining close

29 June 2015

The Papua New Guinea Mining Minister Byron Chan is confident the mining of copper and gold on the seafloor in the Bismarck Sea will start soon.

The National newspaper reports he recently went to Newcastle in Britain to see Nautilus Minerals offshore mining tools being manufactured and assembled.

He told the paper that he can now say with confidence that he has seen the equipment and that seafloor mining within the Bismarck Sea will soon be a reality.

The planned Bismarck Sea mining operation by Nautilus Minerals is expected to be the world’s first sea-floor mining operation.RNZI


40) Mother and baby survive drifting off Bougainville

29 June 2015

A mother and her baby clung to the remnants of a boat and drifted for more than 24 hours off Bougainville at the weekend, surviving a boating mishap on the way to the Carteret Islands.

The pair were among a party of teachers who set out from Buka on Saturday morning to their jobs on the islands, which lie 86 kilometres northeast of Bougainville.

A search is continuing for two people still missing after the boat took on water during attempts to refuel in heavy seas.

The manager of Bougainville’s Disaster Office, Franklin Lacey, said the mother and her 18-month-old drifted for about 30 kilometres before coming ashore.

“Somehow she got some debris from the sunken boat and got her baby on the debris and they floated. They floated to one of the islands in the Carteret Islands – Iangain Island. They are OK; they are OK. They’re safe and sound on the island. They are with the health authorities on the island now.”

Mr Lacey said three boats were still searching for the missing pair but five others also survived, although he was unsure how they came ashore due to patchy communication with the islands.

He said helicopters from the US Navy’s USNS Mercy also helped in the search.RNZI

41) Act sets benchmark for protection of children in PNG
By Online Editor
10:38 pm GMT+12, 28/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

The drafting of the Lukautim Pikinini Act is in order and sets a benchmark for the protection of children in Papua New Guinea, says Secretary Constitutional and Law Reform Commission (CLRC), Dr Eric Kwa.

Kwa said CLRC had helped the Department of Youth, Religion and Community Development draft the bill.

“The actual Bill took almost took five years. When we came in we got it completed within 12 months. It is now in the process of getting the Act through to be certified,” he said.

“Our partners First Legislative Council is handling the Child Protection Policy and working on the legislation.
“Child Protection Policy is the mirror for the Lukautim Pikinini Act. There are still the outstanding forms and regulation of the details which are being fine-tuned.

“There needs to be more clarity and new forms would be required which is what the the Legislative Council is working on now.

“We have a committee comprising CLRC, Public Solicitor, Community Development, Department of Justice and Attorney General, Office of the Legislative Council, Department of National Planning, Department of Community Development, Correctional Services, police and Juvenile Justice and Public Solicitors Office.

“All these relevant partners have been working on the draft Act which repelled the Infant’s Act and, Deserted wife’s and Children’s Act.

“For the first time husbands can also claim maintenance and custody over the child. The law will also address issues of child marriages, child labour and pregnant mothers in prison.

“As part of the process of implementing the Pikininin Lukautim Act, a new Family Court would be set up by the Magisterial Services to address cases relating to this.

“It’s parental responsibility for their children and it’s good that this law is addressing both parents to be responsible.”



42) Chimbu dancers ready for Games

The National, Monday June 29th, 2015

A WOMEN’S group from Chimbu is preparing to display bilas and songs during the opening of the Pacific Games in Port Moresby on Saturday.
The Five-Mile Down Base women’s group is in Port Moresby after travelling from the Elimbari Range of Chuave district, in Chimbu.
The women held a rehearsal at the 5-Mile park which attracted a crowd who watched them with their beautiful traditional bilas and songs as they danced and shook their heads to the beat of kundu drums. The group is one of four selected by the Games organising committee to represent Chimbu at the Games opening.
The group’s president Rose Bomai said they were happy to represent Chimbu.
“We will make sure that we put on a memorable display during the opening ceremony so that we’ll promote our rich culture and tradition to our visitors,” she said.
“We will do a final rehearsal this Friday at the Sir John Guise Stadium and on Saturday we’ll perform.”
The group had performed at the recent APEC women’s meeting in Port Moresby and during the visit of Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo.


43) Team officials arrive at Games Village

The National, Monday June 29th, 2015

THE first group of Pacific Games officials have arrived in the country, with teams arriving from tomorrow.
Officials for Team Vanuatu and Team Tahiti arrived for the delegation registration meetings ahead of the athletes and team officials.
Officials of Team Vanuatu, Tahiti and Cook Islands have already checked out the Games Village. Australia’s advance party will arrive today.
The team officials are making sure that arrangements by the Games organising committee are in place before teams arrive.
Committee chairman Peter Stewart said: “We are so excited to be welcoming the first representatives of teams to the village. We served over 80 meals for the first time in the village dining hall. So our Games Village is open for business.”
The early arrivals include an observer delegation from the Samoa 2015 Commonwealth Youth Games. They are residing at the Games Village.

44) Vanuatu beach volleyballers upbeat despite defeat

29 June 2015

Vanuatu are staying upbeat despite another loss at the Beach Volleyball World Championships in the Netherlands.

Miller Pata and Linline Matauatu started strongly in their second pool game against the Brazilian duo of Maria Antonelli and Juliana Felisberta Da Silva in Amsterdam, leading 3-1 in the opening set before the South Americans took control to win 21-16.

The Pacific pairing got out to another early lead at 2-0 in the second set before eventually going down 21-13.

Coming off a three set loss to Germany, Linline Matauatu says it was always going to be tough against last year’s World Tour champions.

“We know that they are the top team in the world so we’re really happy to play against Brazil. We start the first game and they are good players but we tried our best to play against Brazil”.

Vanuatu face newcomers Algeria in their final pool clash this evening.RNZI

45) PNG Hunters win ninth straight game

29 June 2015

The Papua New Guinea Hunters have climbed to second in the Queensland Cup rugby league standings after extending their winning run to nine matches.

Captain Israel Eliab bagged four tries as the Hunters thrashed Central Queensland Capras 68-4 in Kokopo yesterday to leapfrog the Ipswich Jets, who were beaten by defending champions the Northern Pride.

Competition leaders Townsville are level with the Hunters on 26 points but have played one less game.

Their Round 16 clash against the Sunshine Coast Falcons was cancelled following the death of Falcons forward James Ackerman, who suffered a head injury in a tackle five minutes into their games against Norths Devils the previous weekend.

He died in hospital two days later and the rugby league community showed their support at the weekend by taking a #‎takeakneeforackers.

The PNG Hunters are away to the Redcliffe Dolphins on Sunday and have a bye next weekend, during which 13 members of their squad, and head coach Michael Marum, will be involved in the Papua New Guinea team competing in the rugby league nines competition at the Pacific Games.RNZI

46) Ryder in jail

Serafina Silaitoga
Monday, June 29, 2015

TWINKLE-toed rugby player William Ryder is serving a prison sentence for failing to pay maintenance.

France-based Ryder, who was sent to the Vaturekuka Corrections Centre last Wednesday, is serving a 28-day sentence.

It is understood that the maintenance totals $1789. Corrections department media officer Kuini Waqasavou confirmed Ryder was in prison.

“We can confirm that he is at the Vaturekuka Correction Centre in Labasa. Other than this, we cannot reveal any other details,” she said.

The French-based player, who was interviewed by this newspaper earlier this month, was arrested at his home in Nabouwalu.

Ryder, who is on holiday from his French-based club, has been part of the Bua provincial team since his arrival in early June.

In an earlier interview, he said there were plans to develop his home team. He said he had just signed a ten-year contract with his French club after which he intends to return home.

Ryder had joined Rupeni Caucau in the Bua rugby team that played against Seaqaqa in Labasa.Fijitimes


Melanesia takes lead on future West Papuan peace


26 JUN 2015 – 5:43 PM  UPDATED 26 JUN 2015 - 8:05 PM

Australia’s nearest Pacific neighbours have taken the lead in trying to broker a peaceful future for Indonesia’s contested West Papuan provinces.

Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and New Caledonia’s FLNKS took the step at the 20th Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) summit in Honiara.

Since Indonesia took over the former Dutch colony in the 1960s, there has been a brutal conflict in West Papua that is estimated to have cost hundreds-of-thousands of lives.

The MSG leaders gave the West Papuan independence movement observer status, rejecting an application for full membership.

Indonesia has been an observer since 2011 and was upgraded to associated membership at the summit.

“The leaders approved the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) as an observer member under the regional and international category representing West Papuans living abroad,” said Solomon Islands prime minister and MSG chair Manasseh Sogavare.

“Associate membership is accorded to Indonesia representing the five Melanesian provinces in Indonesia. I have the greatest pleasure in welcoming them.”

The West Papuans were hoping for full membership of the MSG but accept observer status as a first step.

The Indonesians will be represented at the MSG by the governors of its five Papuan provinces.

“Building a strong Melanesia in the Pacific is certainly a desire for our every member country,” said PNG prime minister Peter O’Neill.

“For 53 years we have endured the most severe human rights violations, torture, killing rape, arbitrary detention. The lives of at least 500,000 have been taken.

“But ensuring this is done through a process where peace, progress and prosperity is ensured and sustained for all is a little bit more complicated.

“In this respect, this MSG meeting is one of the most important in the history of the group, particularly in ensuring the participation of all Melanesian people living in the provinces of Indonesia.”

With their first ever diplomatic recognition, the West Papuans wasted no time at the summit, also attended by Indonesia’s deputy foreign minister, to highlight their struggle.

“For 53 years we struggled on our own against the colonial ruler Indonesia,” said Octovianus Mote, secretary general of the ULMWP.

“For 53 years we have endured the most severe human rights violations, torture, killing rape, arbitrary detention. The lives of at least 500,000 have been taken.

“We might not be a full member of the MSG, but a door has opened to us. As observers, the MSG effectively recognised us as a country in waiting.”

“Let me assure you that Indonesia’s membership will bring benefits to each and every member of our esteemed organisation.”

Indonesia bitterly opposed the West Papuan application, saying it is the only true representative of its citizens.

“The MSG in 2007 state that MSG members fully respect the principles of international law governing relations between nations, including the principle of sovereignty, the equality of independence of all states and the non-interference in the domestic affairs of states,” Indonesia’s deputy foreign minister Dr A.M. Fachir told summit leaders.

“Let me assure you that Indonesia’s membership will bring benefits to each and every member of our esteemed organisation.”

Fiji’s prime minister spoke in support of Indonesia, after overseeing their entry into the MSG as observers in 2011.

“Fiji is convinced this is not just the only way to improve the situation for our Melanesian brothers and sisters in the West Papua, it is the only way,” said Voreqe Bainimarama.

“We also hope that as time progresses that those West Papuans that are outside Indonesia can become part of that engagement.

“We acknowledge that the United Liberation Movement of West Papua represents a significant body of opinion in the West Papua diaspora and also has the welfare of the West Papuan people at heart.”

The West Papuan and Indonesian status also means others like Australia’s Melanesian Torres Strait islanders can now also apply for membership.

West Papuans said they will again seek full-membership at the next Melanesian Spearhead Group meeting in two years time.

Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1107 ( Thursday 25 June 2015 )


1a) MSG Leaders Summit Opens in Honiara

By Online Editor
00:06 am GMT+12, 24/06/2015, Solomon Islands

Leaders of Melanesia were today welcomed to their 21st summit in Honiara, capital with the traditional welcome ceremony of ‘chupu’, a presentation of food, fruits, betel-nut and root-crops as well as a pig.

Some young dancers from four provinces in the Solomon Islands comprising both men and women lightly clad in grass or sack coverings, face painted and armed with clubs and spears also put up lively cultural performances as part of the opening ceremony, held in the closed grounds of the Solomon Islands Museum in the island’s capital.

The performers were among a small group of locals invited to be part of the opening ceremony of the MSG Leaders’ Summit. A larger crowd watched from the distance, separated from the Museum grounds by a metal fence. A traditional leader of Guadalcanal, the island and province that hosts Honiara, Paul Tovua spoke in both his language and in English to welcome the MSG leaders. He also presented the chupu to each of the five Melanesian leaders.

First Secretary at the Fijian High Commission in PNG, Vilitati Mataitini received the chupu gifts on behalf of the Melanesian leaders.

Only two heads of government in the Melanesian Spearhead Group attended the opening of the Leaders Summit today. These are the Prime Minister of Fiji Frank Bainimarama and summit host, Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare. Their Papua New Guinea counterpart Peter O’Neill was a no show, represented instead by his Works Minister Ben Micah. The word in Honiara is that O’Neill would arrive on Thursday, in time for the Leaders’ retreat that would be held inside the Heritage Park Hotel in the capital. He is reportedly officiating in the inaugural Port Moresby to Port Vila (Vanuatu) direct flight today by his national airliner Air Niugini.

O’Neill is also expected to be chief guest at the opening of his country’s new chancery on Friday that was recently built and ready to be used not far from the main government buildings in Honiara.

Legal challenges in Vanuatu also prevented the country’s new Prime Minister Sato Kilman from joining his MSG counterparts this week. He is instead being represented by the Director General in the Prime Minister’s Office Johnson Naviti. Kanaky leader Victor Tutugoro is representing New Caledonia’s Front de Liberation Nationale Kanak et Socialiste (FLNKS), the fifth member of the MSG.

In welcoming his fellow Melanesian leaders, Sogavare seemed to rally support for the people of West Papua although he never mentioned them by name, but he did meet the delegation from West Papua after the opening ceremony, shaking hands and having their photos taken together. He neither made mention of Indonesia as well, which is already an observer member of the MSG.

All he said was that all eyes would be on Honiara this week, and that “the world is watching us “and eagerly anticipating what the outcome will be when we deliberate on the application for new membership to the MSG.

“Let us not forget the dreams and wishes of our people to be part of our Melanesian family; the desire of our people for an inclusive MSG. As a matter of fact the deliberations on these applications will test our commitment to a caring, progressive, peaceful and inclusive MSG.

“It will also test our commitment to the basic principles of human rights and rule of law as embedded in the United Nation Charters, which the MSG as members of the United Nations subscribe to. It is a test of our genuineness to solve a problem between two next door neighbours in the interest of regional peace and stability. Ultimately, it is a test to our claim to civilization and good corporate citizens of planet earth.”

In what was a fiery speech punctuated by applause from the audience, Prime Minister Sogavare who as host assumes the chairmanship role of the MSG also raised caution on plans by the MSG to launch some regional initiatives. He didn’t name what these initiatives were, but said they should only be done when time was right.

“During the opening of the 5th MSG Police Commissioners Conference in Honiara last month, I reiterate that it would be a grave mistake for us to rely solely on regional strategy in order to achieve our aims and objectives when we are yet to strengthen our domestic capacity. We must not sacrifice our domestic resources at the expense of meeting regional strategy.

“We can only move forward towards supporting a regional initiative when we are ready at the right time. This is because doing so would be like putting the cart before the horse. Therefore, it is important that in considering any new initiatives and programmes under the MSG, we must not duplicate the role of other regional organisations in the Pacific. Let us complement the work of other regional organisations for the benefit of our peoples.”

Leaders have finished for the day and the Summit would resume tomorrow with their traditional retreat before they hold their plenary on the final day on Friday. Main item on the agenda is the applications by Indonesia to be upgraded to “associate member” and by the United Liberation Movement of West Papua to become a full member.

Also expected to be on the agenda of the Leaders are plans to form Melanesian Solutions, the business arm of the MSG, and adoption of the organisation’s next 25-year strategic plan.

Solomon Islands’ chairmanship of the MSG would last until the next Leaders Summit in two years time.


1b) Solomons says yes to Indonesia, West Papua membership

By Online Editor
00:04 am GMT+12, 24/06/2015, Solomon Islands

Solomon Islands says it will support Indonesia’s bid to become an associate member of the Melanesian Spearhead Group in return to giving the United Liberation Movement of West Papua observer membership of the sub-regional bloc.

Peter Shanel Agovaka, Minister of Police, National Security and Correctional Services of Solomon Islands offered the compromise at the MSG Foreign Ministers Meeting that his government is hosting in the island capital Honiara this week.

The difficulty, according to Minister Agovaka is the decision taken in 2012 by MSG Leaders to remove the requirement that any member seeking associate membership of the group must first serve at least five years as an observer. That new rule also included a provision that any new observer application must have the endorsement of its ‘administering power.’

“We believe this is an important criterion that was removed. This is because we need to be able to work closely with an Observer and that it must be able to display that it abides by all the decisions of the MSG within the given timeframe. That change already been made, Solomon Islands firmly believes that the imbalance caused by a decision in the past can only be best rectified by reviewing the criteria where an application for Observership needs to have the support of the Administering power,” said Minister Agovaka, who is Solomon Islands Head of Delegation to the MSG Foreign Affairs Meeting since his Foreign Affairs counterpart, Milner Tozaka has assumed the chairmanship of the meeting.

“Solomon Islands strongly urges that since we have revised the criteria for Associate Membership, we must seriously consider removing the prerequisite for Observer applicants to MSG. Based on this we can consider admitting Indonesia to be an Associate Member based on the revised criteria in 2012, while we also consider allowing ULMWP to be an Observer in the MSG. Then and only then we realise a balance in the criterion applicable for membership application for the two categories of membership in our group.”

That 2012 decision to remove the 5-year minimum requirement and add the ‘administering power’s endorsement’ was done during Fiji’s chairmanship of the MSG.

Minister Agovaka’s proposed way out of the thorny issue of upgrading Indonesia’s membership of the MSG from observer to associate member comes in the wake of a call by his Foreign Affairs counterpart for the need to stick by the age old rule of the 26 year old body of consensus decision making.

“An issue discussed by Senior Officials last week and which will be before us to consider are the applications for different categories of membership to the MSG, said Solomon Islands foreign minister and chair of FOMM of the MSG, Milner Tozaka.

“I note there is great interest in our countries, the region on this issue. However, as all of you know, according to the Establishment Agreement of the MSG, decisions are based on consensus. This means nothing is agreed unless everyone agrees. To this end, I hope that when we discuss this issue, we will be guided by wisdom and that whatever recommendation we submit to our Leaders for their ultimate decision is one that is balanced and sound.

“The world will be watching and our people will be listening and watching with a lot of anticipation,” chairman Tozaka added. It’s not clear whether the Solomon Islands’ proposal as outlined by Minister Agovaka has been adopted by the Foreign Ministers, who began their meeting in the conference room of the luxurious Heritage Park Hotel in downtown Honiara.

An option the ministers have would be to defer a decision on this to their leaders who will begin their biennial summit with a retreat on Thursday. Expected to join host and summit chairman Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare from today would be his Fijian counterpart, Frank Bainimarama.

The participation of Vanuatu’s Prime Minister Sato Kilman is unknown given that the legal status of his government was the subject of an urgent petition at the Vanuatu Supreme Court today.

The other MSG Leader, Prime Minister Peter O’Neil of Papua New Guinea is expected to fly into Honiara in his official jet aircraft early on Wednesday, in time for the opening of the MSG Summit .

Security around the Summit venue has been stepped up with members of the Royal Solomon Islands Police maintaining a 24-hour watch. Officials also confirmed that the traditional retreat of the leaders, initially planned to be held at an outlying island in Solomons’ central province has been scrapped and leaders will just hold this inside the Heritage Park Hotel.

Meanwhile director general of the MSG Peter Forau has confirmed that plans to establish an MSG police peacekeeping force has hit a snag over the group’s consensus decision-making rule.

In delivering his annual report to his foreign ministers, Director General Forau said some members have expressed some reservations about the proposal. He did not name who these members were. In keeping with the consensus rule of the MSG, the proposed peacekeeping force would only be launched once all members agree, he added.

In briefing local and overseas journalists who are covering the MSG Summit last week, Director General Forau confirmed that Fiji because of its experience in peacekeeping operations with the United Nations is leading plans to form the force.

He also confirmed that Indonesia has offered US$500,000 for the construction of an MSG Police Force Academy in Fiji.


1c ) PNG PM Supports West Papua Participation In MSG
O’Neill: Representation must be by ‘elected leaders’

By Isaac Nicholas

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, June 24, 2015) – West Papua will have a seat in the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) but must have mandated leaders representing them.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said this before leaving for the Solomon Islands tomorrow to attend the MSG Leaders Summit to discuss among other issues the representation of West Papua on MSG.

“We welcome the participation of West Papuans to MSG. That’s what we are trying to facilitate. What we are trying to do is, find what is the right organisation that is going to represent the West Papuans at MSG?

“They must be elected, they must be mandated, they must be properly appointed to participate. We cannot have anybody coming off the street to say I represent West Papuans.

“We have to do it properly, in an orderly manner that we want to allow our brothers and sisters from West Papua to participate.

“Nobody is trying to deny them a seat on the table, we all want them to sit there, just like we have done with the Kanaks in New Caledonia. We must have a structure that is going to do so,” Mr O’Neill said.

“My discussion with the president of Indonesia recently was very simple, there are five Papuan elected Governors in five provinces representing 11 million people.

“These are elected leaders, they are West Papuans, and not Javanese or other race therefore, they can represent West Papua on MSG.

“We will discuss it with other leaders, we are open-minded to this arrangement and we will make decisions that is consistent with what we have said before. The Kanaks is a very good example, we can use that as a basis of which we would allow our West Papuan Leaders to participate,” Mr O’Neill said.

PNG Post-Courier

2) Solomons Police Ban Alcohol During MSG Leaders Summit
Officer remain hopeful residents to remain supportive

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 24, 2015) – Solomon Islands police have put in place a liqour ban for the duration of the Melanesian Spearhead Group Leaders summit.

Solomon Islands Police put on public order management demonstration at GBR RAMSI base.

All liquor outlets have been closed and black market areas are being patrolled by police.

Police says they are also concerned about unregistered groups gathering in support of the West Papuans, who have formally applied for MSG membership.

Senior police officers say people under the influence of liquor could be more expressive of their views which could spark problems.

However they remain optimistic that Honiara residents will remain supportive of their Melanesian leaders gathering on home ground.

Radio New Zealand International

3) PNG offers to host ninth ACP summit
By Online Editor
8:30 pm GMT+12, 23/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea has offered to host the next leader’s summit for the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of states next year.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill made the offer when addressing the ACP group of ambassadors in Brussels, Belgium.

Prior to delivering his address, O’Neill met with the ACP secretary-general Patrick Gomes and discussed several of the more challenging issues facing ACP countries.

He concluded his address to the ambassadors by stating that PNG is willing to host the ninth ACP leaders summit that had originally been intended to take place in the Caribbean.

“As part of our commitment to the ACP group, our Government will work closely with the ACP secretary-general and the Committees of Ambassadors in order to undertake and participate in this event.

“Papua New Guinea is also going to be the host of a number of high level regional and global leaders meetings in the coming years.

“This will include the Pacific Islands Forum leaders meeting in September this year and the APEC Leaders Summit in November 2018.

“Our Government has the necessary capacity and the logistical support that is required to welcome the Leaders, and we are committed to delivering a very successful summit.”

He said, the Government of Papua New Guinea will await a response to the offer to host the summit.

He said the broad range of ACP countries have a wealth of knowledge and experience that is required for developing economies to confront shared challenges, and he said Papua New Guinea has an important role to play in that process.

“The challenge for Papua New Guinea is the same for many of the member countries, to add more midstream and downstream value to our national resources,” O’Neill said to the group.

“Another focus of our Government that is shared with ACP countries is how we can deal with cross-border issues that have a devastating impact on our people and their lives.

“Such issues like the effect of climate change and pandemic diseases are areas that are of great concern to our nation and the ACP community,” he said.



4) Cooks Govt looks to cut income tax

24 June 2015

The Cook Islands Government says it is looking at reducing income tax.

The Finance Minister, Mark Brown, says amendments to the Income Tax Act passed last week means the Government won’t “double-dip” by taxing trustees and beneficiaries of trusts.

He says income tax will be reduced in a considered manner, and a person earning $26,000 a year will receive a reduction of their tax burden by $150 on January the 1st next year and a further $75 the following year.RNZI

5) $62m for port

Talamua Online
Wednesday, June 24, 2015

APIA – A $US30million ($F62m) project for the Enhancement of Safety of the Apia Port was signed on Monday between Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi and the Ambassador of Japan to Samoa, Kazumasa Shibuta.

The notes lay out the conditions for a Japan funded project titled, “The Project for the Enhancement of Safety of the main Apia Port at Matautu-tai”.

The Apia Port is the most important social and economic infrastructure in the country because approximately 97 percent of the foreign trade cargoes of the country are handled at the port.

The project will see major reconstruction on the port to improve safety and enhance the capacity of the wharf.

It will be implemented in conformity with the Strategy of Development of Samoa that lists “boosting productivity for sustainable development” as a priority.

The present condition of the port makes it susceptible to a range of problems such as low level safety for ships mooring to the berth.

6) Bail conditions remain for 3 accused of cyber-crime offences in Samoa
By Online Editor
4:54 pm GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Samoa

Chief Justice Patū Tiava’asu’e Falefatu Sapolu has ordered the two men and a woman accused of an alleged pyramid money making scheme to continue on the bail conditions set down by the Court four weeks ago.

This was after defence counsel Leota Raymond Schuster verbally sought the Court’s indulgence in reducing the conditions.

Bail conditions include surrendering of all travel documents and for the trio to sign in at the police station twice a week.

Chief Justice Patū informed Leota to make an application to the Court, but until then, the bail condition remains.

The matter was adjourned to Monday for the Court to rule on the name suppression order and for prosecution to finalize the charges.

However, prosecution asked for another adjournment as there are additional charges yet to be finalized.

“With reluctance I have to adjourn this matter again to next Monday for prosecution to lodge, finalize and serve the additional charges to the defence,” said CJ Patū.

One of the defendant’s shook his head in disappointment and the defence counsel asked for court time this week.

CJ Patū said his schedule is tight but emphasized to prosecution that this would be the final adjournment.

“If this matter is called again and prosecution has not finalize the charges, the Court will go ahead with information already before the Court,” said His Honour.

An interim suppression order for the publication of the trio’s name was also emphasized by CJ Patu.

The trio was arrested at the airport last month as they were preparing to leave Samoa.


7) French Polynesia’s Flosse sentenced in espionage case

By Online Editor
11:56 pm GMT+12, 23/06/2015, French Polynesia

French Polynesia’s former president Gaston Flosse has been found guilty of abusing public funds but acquitted of violating privacy in a long-running espionage case against him.

The criminal court in Papeete rejected that his intelligence service, which ran between 1997 and 2004, invaded the privacy of rival politicians, journalists and others.

But Flosse was found guilty of abusing US$10 million of public funds by running a spy agency out the presidency office.

He has been sentenced to an 18-month suspended jail term, to pay US$19,000 and is ineligible to hold public office for two years.

A former journalist and politician Sabrina Birk, who says she was spied on, says she’s not satisfied with the outcome of the case.

“He can file an appeal to this. And it will go higher. And he will not be condemned for it, he will not have to pay back the people for the money that he used to listen to our phonecalls. This is why I am still upset because I believe Gaston Flosse should be condemned,” said Birk


8) Cook Islanders hit out at NZ MP over pension bill

Updated at 1:45 pm on 23 June 2015

A Cook Islander has accused the New Zealand National MP Alfred Ngaro of voting against his own people, after the passing of the Social Assistance Bill.

New Zealand has now changed the superannuation rules for people in the realm countries – the Cook Islands, Tokelau and Niue.

Mr Ngaro, the first Cook Islander elected to the New Zealand Parliament, says the new law allows people to move back after 55 and then collect the pension once they turn 65.

The Cook Islands Prime Minister says he wanted more and says the rule that people have to spend five years over the age of 50 in New Zealand should be waived.

A veteran superannuation campaigner, Les Priest, says if Mr Ngaro supported the amendment to waive the rule, there could have been a different outcome.

He says New Zealand will have to provide people over 50 with health and social services while in New Zealand and the rule simply doesn’t make sense.RNZI


9) Nauru Government order extra police to secure Parliament
By Online Editor
5:27 pm GMT+12, 23/06/2015, Nauru

The Government of Nauru has ordered extra police to secure any threat of further disruptions, following Tuesday’s riots outside Parliament House.

In a statement the government said however, there have been more attempts to destabilise the Government with the suspended MPs again using the foreign media to spread lies and mistruths.

Unfortunately some of these media outlets are giving airtime to Opposition MPs even after they engaged in criminal activities, which is shameful.

Suspended MP Mathew Batsiua was arrested on Tuesday and charged. Claims that he was entrapped into a false meeting with the president are false.

Batsiua was involved in a riot, had breached parliament and took part in criminal activities.

The Government can confirm Roland Kun was asked to deplane from an outbound flight following a police investigation into his alleged involvement in Tuesday’s riot. Kun was fleeing the scene of a crime before authorities tracked him down and confiscated his passport, it said.

Kun will have his passport returned if he is found not to have broken the law.

The Opposition is trying to score political points out of the incident which is a disgrace. It was a blatant criminal act in which ten police officers were hurt and needed medical treatment.

The Nauruan Government makes no apology for upholding law and order when its people are in danger and will continue to do everything it can to ensure such violence doesn’t happen again.

Meanwhile, six police officers with varying injuries from cuts requiring stitches, bruising, bites and minor head injuries from rocks and punches were treated at Republic of Nauru Hospital following the riots last Tuesday.

Two police officers had chest injuries and a number of others needed pain relief for musculo-skeletal pain and headaches. A few collapsed due to dehydration related to extreme exertion and heat exhaustion. All were treated & discharged.


10) Nauru Government confirms bail refused for two opposition MPs
By Online Editor
5:24 pm GMT+12, 23/06/2015, Nauru

Two opposition MPs in Nauru have been refused bail following their arrest over last week’s anti-government protests.

Sprent Dabwido and Squire Jeremiah were told by the court they would be remanded in custody until 02 July.

Last week’s protests were in response to corruption allegations against president Baron Waqa and justice minister David Adeang.

Another suspended MP, Mathew Batsiua, has also been charged over the protests but is not in custody.

Lockley Denuga, who was one of the protesters, told Pacific Beat the court order is “a delaying tactic” by the government.

“There is no separation between justice and politics,” he said.

“Whoever is presiding is obviously scared of the government, wouldn’t bother to hear the other side as well. We have no justice here.”

Waqa and Adeang are accused of taking bribes from an Australian company buying phosphate.

The government denies the allegations. The ABC has requested an interview with a representative of the government but no-one has come forward.



11) Tiwi Islands start to stockpile woodchips at Port Melville for export to Asian paper mills

Updated 24 June 2015, 12:50 AEST
Matt Brann

The first truckloads of woodchips from the Tiwi Islands of the Northern Territory are being stockpiled at Melville Port for export to Asia later next month.

The historic first harvest of Acacia mangium trees started yesterday in front of a large crowd of locals excited to see the project up and running.

“I’m really proud and it’s really important for our people to see this [harvest], especially the young people, because we need to get them off welfare and get a job,” Tiwi elder Gibson Farmer Illortaminni said.

Plantation Management Partners managing director Glen Samsa said now that the harvest had started, it should take around 30 days to accumulate enough woodchips for the first shipment.

“It’ll depend on the size of that vessel, but we’re looking at one vessel taking about 40,000 green metric tonnes,” he told ABC Rural.

“So we’re expecting a vessel to come in and receive woodchips towards the end of July end of August, that’s the plan.

“We’re speaking to a number of customers at the moment and the [first] vessel is likely to go to Japan or China.

“It’ll take about four or five days for us to fill that vessel and then about 10 days to get to the destination.

“The pulp mills over there [in Asia] tend to be right next to port facilities, so the woodchips will go straight to a stockpile ready to be turned into paper.”

The ships will be loaded at Port Melville on the Aspley Strait which has been in the media in recent months after it was revealed the port had opened despite no formal environmental impact assessments from either the Northern Territory or Commonwealth governments.

Mr Samsa said the debate that followed caused some last minute hurdles for the Tiwi’s forestry project.

“It did [have an impact] and any negativity can affect us, we were in the midst of having negotiations with financiers and it did stall those negotiations,” he said.

“However we always felt during that process that we had the appropriate approvals to export woodchip, so we worked through that with our financiers and as a result we were able to close the finance.

“So we’re now going to go hell-for-leather, the wet season is coming and we need to get as many vessels out as we can.

“We’ve budgeted on about four vessels [loaded in 2015] and hoping to do five.”

It is hoped the sale of woodchips will generate around $140 million over the next five years and create up to 100 jobs for Tiwi people.ABC


12) Melanesian Spiahed Miting istat long Solomon Islands

Updated 24 June 2015, 14:11 AEST
Sam Seke

Solomon Islands Praim Minista Manasseh Sogavare ibin opim despla miting tede long moning

Odio: Deli Oso, Press Secretary blong Solomon Islands Praim Minista i toktok.
Odio: Patrick Kaiku, wanpla lecturer long University blong PNG itoktok wantem Caroline Tiriman

Praim Minista Manasseh Sogavare blong Solomon Islands ibin mekim strongpela toktok long Melanesian Spearhead Group long oli imas noken lus tingting long ol as tingting long oli kirapim dispela grup.

Praim Minista Manasseh Sogavare i mekim dispela toktok taim em i oficially openim miting blong ol MSG lida long Honiara tede long moning.

Olgeta lida blong Papua New Guinea, Fiji na ol Kanak blong New Caledonia – na sampela we i makim tu gavman blong Vanuatu, Indonesia na ol West Papua i stap tu long seremoni tede.

Press Secretary blong Solomon Islands Praim Minista, Deli Oso i tok Praim Minista Sato Kilman blong Vanuatu em ino kam long miting blong ol MSG lida.

Ms Oso i tok ol lida blong West Papua i bin givim tok hamamas igo long Praim Minista Sogavare long  toktok blongen  we i makim filing oa tingting blong ol.

Na nau igat askim igo long ol lida blong Melanesia long  imas luksave long moa long 500 tausan pipal em oli dai pinis long han blong Indonesia na larim oli kamap full memba blong Melanesian Spearhead Grup.

Ol  Civil Society grup long Papua New Guinea husat isave sapotim ol pipal blong West Papua i mekim despla toktok bihaenim wanpla mas em oli bin mekim igo long Palaman haus long Mande.

Planti NGO grup long Fiji, Papua New Guinea, New Caledonia, Australia, Vanuatu na ol narapla kantri long wold i sapotim despla askim blong West Papua blong joinim MSG.

Patrick Kaiku, wanpla lecturer long University blong PNG ibin stap long despla march na emi tokim Radio Australia  olsem oli bin karim ol cofin tu long despla march.ABC

13a ) Bougainville President bai bungim ol wokman

Updated 24 June 2015, 14:16 AEST
Sam Seke

Dr John Momis bai holim miting wantem ol gavman wokman-meri blong en long Buka tumora

Odio: Aloysius Laukai bosman blong New dawn FM Redio stesin long Bougainville itoktok wantem Sam Seke

President blong Autonomous Bougainville Gavman i singautim olgeta niupela memba blong palamen, ol niupela Executive Council memba, na ol pablik servant long Buka long bungim em long tumora.

Manager na niusman blong New Dawn FM, Aloysius Laukai i tok President Dr John Momis i laik bungim olgeta long Hutjena Secondary School long 10 kilok long moning.

Dr Momis ibin tokaut pinis taim em i makim sampela memba blong nupla executive council blongen long wik igo pinis  long em i laik lukim gavman we i wok long servim trutru ol pipol blong Bougainville.

Em i tok em i laik lukim gavman we i sevim moni, ino paulim moni, yusim gut, na i lukautim gut ol propati blong gavman.ABC



13b) Les dirigeants mélanésiens se penchent sur la candidature des indépendantistes papous

Mis à jour 24 June 2015, 16:33 AEST

Élodie Largenton

C’est ce matin que le sommet du Groupe mélanésien Fer de lance s’est officiellement ouvert aux Îles Salomon.

(Credit: ABC)
En raison de l’agitation politique qui règne en ce moment au Vanuatu, le Premier ministre, Sato Kilman, a préféré rester à Port-Vila. C’est un haut fonctionnaire, Johnson Naviti, qui représente l’archipel à Honiara.
Ces deux prochains jours, les représentants des pays mélanésiens vont notamment examiner deux candidatures : celle du front uni des mouvements de libération de la Papouasie occidentale, et celle de l’Indonésie.
On parle régulièrement de la candidature des indépendantistes papous. Aujourd’hui et demain, dans le cadre de nos décryptages, on s’intéresse à la perception indonésienne de ce dossier.
Pourquoi l’Indonésie cherche-t-elle à devenir membre du Groupe mélanésien Fer de lance ?
Pour Richard Chauvel, chercheur à l’Institut asiatique de l’université de Melbourne, la candidature indonésienne est tout simplement une réponse à la candidature de ses provinces papoues. Mais ce qui est étonnant, explique-t-il, ce sont les arguments avancés par les autorités indonésiennes. Selon Djakarta, il y aurait en tout 11 millions de Mélanésiens qui vivraient dans cinq provinces indonésiennes, et non deux. L’Indonésie compterait donc plus de Mélanésiens que l’ensemble des membres du Groupe réunis ? « C’est un argument curieux », estime Richard Chauvel.
« C’est une construction du ministère indonésien des Affaires étrangères. Comment perçoit-on les identités ethniques ? Ce sont des constructions politiques et sociales. La question, c’est est-ce que les habitants et les représentants politiques de ces provinces se présentent comme étant des Mélanésiens. Clairement, les Papous s’identifient comme tels, que ce soit la population ou le gouvernement. Ça ne provoque aucun débat entre Papous, il y a un large consensus là-dessus. Mais en ce qui concerne les gens qui vivent dans les Moluques, les Moluques du nord, ou les petites îles de la Sonde orientales, je ne pense pas qu’ils se considèrent comme étant mélanésiens. On a donc une situation où le gouvernement indonésien identifie les habitants et l’élite politique de ces provinces comme étant des Mélanésiens, alors qu’eux-mêmes ne le font pas. »
Le chercheur Richard Chauvel rappelle d’ailleurs que la province des Moluques a, elle aussi, cherché à devenir indépendante, dans les années 1950. Or, lors de cette bataille, remportée par l’Indonésie, les Moluques n’ont jamais avancé d’argument concernant une quelconque identité mélanésienne.
Suite du sujet demain. On verra pourquoi l’Indonésie est si attachée à la Papouasie occidentale.ABC

13c) Australie : des avocats papous donnent leurs trucs et astuces pour blanchir de l’argent sale

Mis à jour 24 June 2015, 16:22 AEST

Élodie Largenton

Petite leçon de corruption face caméra (cachée).
Un enquêteur a filmé des avocats d’un célèbre cabinet de Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée en train d’expliquer comment déposer de l’argent sale sur des comptes bancaires australiens sans se faire repérer par la police ni par les agences internationales de lutte contre la corruption.
Pour Harvey Maladina, qui vient d’une famille influente en Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée, impliquée dans les affaires politiques du pays, la clé, c’est de ne pas voir trop gros :
« Tu vois, la plupart des types qui sont sous surveillance ici, c’est parce qu’ils expédient de grosses sommes d’argent d’un coup sur un compte en Australie. C’est comme ça qu’ils sont repérés. La police fédérale australienne garde un œil sur ces transactions particulières. Normalement, si ça passe par des cabinets d’avocats, ils ne se posent pas de questions, surtout si c’est un cabinet comme celui avec lequel je travaille – un cabinet prestigieux. » 
Harvey Maladina et son associé australien Greg Sheppard sont considérés comme étant proches du Premier ministre papou, Peter O’Neill. Ce dernier a été formellement accusé de fraude et de blanchiment d’argent, il y a un an. Le dirigeant papou aurait signé une lettre autorisant le versement de 28 millions de dollars au cabinet d’avocats de Paul Paraka.
La police australienne estime que plus de 200 millions de dollars d’argent sale de Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée sont blanchis chaque année en Australie.ABC

13d ) Brèves du Pacifique – mercredi 24 juin 2015

Posté à 24 June 2015, 16:10 AEST

Élodie Largenton

Le Forum des îles du Pacifique reste très prudent face à la crise qui agite Nauru. 

Le président de Palau, qui est à la tête de l’organisation actuellement, a publié un bref communiqué, appelant simplement au respect de « la constitution de Nauru, de la loi et des droits fondamentaux des citoyens ». Le président de Palau recommande aussi de se montrer patient. Pour l’ancien magistrat australien Peter Law, qui a été expulsé de Nauru l’an passé, le Forum devrait pourtant prendre ses responsabilités et dénoncer publiquement les derniers événements qui vont à l’encontre de la liberté d’expression. Et, selon lui, « l’Australie et la Nouvelle-Zélande devraient aider le Forum à faire en sorte que la démocratie revienne à Nauru ». Trois députés de l’opposition sont actuellement en prison, accusés de chercher à déstabiliser le gouvernement. Un autre député a vu son passeport être annulé « pour raisons de sécurité ».
En Australie, après plusieurs semaines de débats parfois houleux, les nouvelles mesures antiterroristes ont finalement été présentées aujourd’hui au Parlement. Le gouvernement de Tony Abbott veut surtout pouvoir déchoir de leur nationalité les binationaux terroristes. Ceux qui financent les djihadistes et qui les recrutent sont tout aussi concernés que ceux qui prennent les armes. On estime que cette nouvelle loi pourrait s’appliquer à environ la moitié des 120 Australiens engagés dans les rangs de Daesh en Syrie et en Irak. Tony Abbott voulait aller encore plus loin, et déchoir aussi de leur nationalité les Australiens qui ne possèdent pas d’autre passeport, créant donc des apatrides. Le Premier ministre conservateur y a finalement renoncé, la mesure ayant été jugée anticonstitutionnelle.
Grande réforme en vue du programme des saisonniers du Pacifique en Australie. Le gouvernement veut supprimer tout plafond, ce qui veut dire que le nombre d’Océaniens qui veulent venir travailler pendant quelques mois dans le pays serait illimité. Autres changements importants : ils ne seraient plus obligés de rester au moins 14 semaines, et devraient toucher 1 000 dollars minimum durant leur période d’essai. Les autorités envisagent aussi d’élargir le programme en proposant des emplois temporaires dans le secteur du tourisme, notamment. Tous ces changements auraient pour but d’aider au développement du nord de l’Australie.
Un cadeau d’un goût douteux : l’entreprise Transfield, chargée de la gestion des centres de rétention australiens, a donné un ring de boxe aux demandeurs d’asile et réfugiés qui vivent sur l’île de Manus, en Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée. C’est « irresponsable et inapproprié », dénonce Ian Rintoul, le porte-parole de la Coalition de l’action pour les réfugiés. Il rappelle que deux salariés de l’entreprise, dont un boxeur amateur, sont accusés d’avoir battu à mort Reza Barati, l’année dernière.
Cela arrive souvent que les requins fassent les frais des gros filets des chalutiers, mais la prise réalisée le week-end dernier par des pêcheurs australiens au large du Victoria est exceptionnelle : ils ont sorti de l’eau un requin pèlerin de plus de 6 mètres. La dernière fois qu’un tel spécimen avait été pêché, c’était dans les années 1930 ! Le requin de 3,5 tonnes a été remis à des scientifiques de la région.ABC

14) Forum Secretariat Receives 40 Submissions For Regional Priorities
Sub-Committee to determine 5 key regional priority areas

By Vuniwaqa Bola-Bari

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, June 24, 2015) – Regional forestry conservation and regional waste management were part of the submissions from Fiji to the Pacific Regionalism Initiative program.

This was confirmed by the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat which received the submissions from civil society organisations.

With the Pacific Regional Initiative expected to close last week, the Forum Secretariat stated it had so far received 40 submissions.

“The Specialist Sub-Committee on Regionalism will sit down to select the top five priorities for the region on July 13-15. These five priorities will be put before leaders for their consideration and selection as the key regional priority areas for the region moving forward,” the secretariat stated.

The initiative was allowed through the newly-adopted Framework for Pacific Regionalism, which established an inclusive process to determine the priorities for the region.

The process allows any individual, organisation or group from any country in the Pacific to put forward a regional initiative for Pacific Islands Forum Leaders to consider at their annual forum.

The regional initiatives submitted needed to address and deal with key public policy issues and challenges for the region that required the oversight of Pacific Islands leaders and that were most appropriately dealt with at regional or sub-regional level.

Fiji Times Online.


15) Health Ministry to improve lab services

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Update: 7:40PM The Ministry of Health and Medical Services is focusing on improving laboratory services in all its health facilities across the country.

This, according to a government statement, was highlighted by Minister for Health and Medical Services Jone Usamate while opening the Laboratory Quality Management System workshop for technicians and laboratory workers at Holiday Inn today.

Mr Usamate said the objective of the workshop was to strengthen the pathology services at all health facilities around the country and devise strategies to enhance the service delivery in the medical labs, the statement said.Fijitimes

16) Province needs more doctors
The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

THERE is a shortage of doctors in the country and those posted to provinces must be looked after, an official says.
Allan Bird, the board chairman of Boram General Hospital in Wewak, East Sepik, raised the concern following an incident involving one of the local doctors. Bird received a report that one of the hospital doctors travelling in a vehicle was deliberately forced off the road by a group of people last weekend.
“We are concerned because it appears that certain members of the public are targeting hospital staff at a time when police are making arrests in relation to the theft of funds at the hospital,” Bird said.
“That happened several days after one of the hospital’s vehicles was stoned by the same group of people.”
He told The National that East Sepik had nine doctors serving the province. Under the staffing structure, the hospital is supposed to have more than 30 doctors. But that has never happened.
However, in the past eight months, with the help of a new chief executive officer, 16 doctors have been hired. “Because we are actively seeking doctors, and doctors are short in the country, including nurses and community health workers, we have been on a drive to recruit new doctors.
“We must double the number,” Bird said.


17) Commission yet to recognise institutions

The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

THE Education Department and the Office of Higher Education are yet to recognise three private education institutions, thus graduates have not been included on the payroll, according to the Teaching Services Commission.
They are Bismarck Teachers College in East New Britain, Asia Pacific Teachers College in Lae and Jubilee University in the National Capital District.
In the case of Jubilee University, the commission has been told by the officer of higher education that the submission is before the national education board.
“The board approves submissions after thorough consideration of the curriculum to be taught, certificates to be offered, available learning facilities and resources, required academic staff based on the required education standards,” commissioner operations Mathew Pobaya said.
The issue was raised during a conference in Lae last week by the Momase provincial education advisers after employing graduates from Bismarck and the Asia Pacific teachers colleges.
Most of the graduates have been teaching without the commission admitting them and most teachers have not been paid. Pobaya said the education department and the commission had processes and procedures, which the provincial education board and advisers must follow.


18) Jiwaka signs agreement

The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

JIWAKA became the first province to sign an agreement with the Electoral Commission to assist with planning, preparation and delivery of elections in 2017.
Electoral Commissioner Sir Andrew Trawen and Jiwaka provincial administrator Michael Wandil, who is the provincial election steering committee chairman, signed the agreement last Friday for the General Elections.
It was witnessed by the deputy administrator Joseph Karap, provincial police commander Supt Joseph Tondop, provincial awareness steering committee member Irene Narewec and women’s representative Rosen Kiap.
The purpose of the agreement is to strengthen the network of partnership between Jiwaka and Papua New Guinea Electoral Commission,” Sir Andrew said.

19) Vanuatu parliament to reconvene to hear motion

24 June 2015

The Vanuatu Supreme Court has ordered parliament to reconvene next week to hear a motion of no-confidence against the prime minister Sato Kilman.

The court ordered Parliament to be re-convened on the afternoon of Tuesday 30 June to hear the motion lodged by opposition leader Edward Natapei against the new Kilman-led government.

Justice Dudley Aru declared that the decision by the new Speaker Marcellino Pipite to rule out the motion was in breach of the opposition’s constitutional right to have its motion debated.RNZI

20) Vanuatu PM attendance at MSG meeting in doubt

24 June 2015

It remains uncertain whether the Prime Minister of Vanuatu Sato Kilman will attend this week’s Melanesian Spearhead Group leader’s summit in Honiara.

The talks which are expected to decide on West Papua membership of the MSG have coincided with court proceedings on a possible no confidence motion against Mr Kilman.

That decision is due in Port Vila this afternoon, and a spokesman for Mr Kilman says his attendance at the MSG summit depends on the outcome of the case.

Meanwhile, the country is being represented at the crucial talks in Honiara by a senior bureaucrat Johnson Naviti.

Vanuatu has traditionally supported West Papuan efforts to join the MSG but this latest development casts further doubt on the bid by the United Liberation Movement for West Papua for full membership.

The Vanuatu Daily Post reports court proceedings involving bribery allegations against 19 mostly government MPs have been adjourned until next month.RNZI

21) Fiji formalises diplomatic relations with Grenada

By Online Editor
Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Update: 6:34PM FIJI and Grenada yesterday formalised diplomatic relations at a ceremony at the Permanent Mission of Fiji to the United Nations in New York.

According to a government statement, Grenada’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Denis Antoine, and his Fijian counterpart, Ambassador Peter Thomson, signed a joint communique establishing diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Following the ceremony, ambassadors Antoine and Thomson held talks on areas of common interest and potential areas of cooperation at the UN, the statement read.

“With both ambassadors being founding members of the Group of Friends of Oceans and Seas at the United Nations, their talks covered measures to ensure the safeguarding of the Sustainable Development Goal on the sustainable use of marine resources.”Fijitimes

22) WULLG to facilitate land acquisition

The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

All land acquisition in Wewak town will be facilitated at the Wewak Urban local level government and not the provincial Lands office.
Wewak Mayor Charles Malenki said the WULLG had reached an understanding with the Department of Lands for the urban council to take charge of the function to avoid problems relating to the township’s planning and expansion programme.
Malenki said the WULLG was aware of some land  being sold through fraudulent means but as soon as he took office, WULLG had fought hard to win back most State land and reserve parks in Wewak. They are now waiting for the urbanisation plan and status of land development plan to be made available by the urbanisation office so that they can work on eviction and relocation exercises.
Malenki was responding to concerns raised by East Sepik Governor Sir Michael Somare’s call for the council to regulate acquisition of land in Wewak.
Malenki said the council was taking all necessary steps to ensure that all land, including customary land, were registered and leased for development.

23) Rural areas ‘lack services’

The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

THE lack of Government services in rural areas is forcing people to move to urban centres, according to Northern Governor Gary Juffa.
He told the “Tanim Graun” forum that people in the rural areas migrated to the urban centres to seek better government services and infrastructure.
“A classic example is happening in the Oro provincial capital of Popondetta, the colonial town which was built to cater for 10,000 people but now accommodating 30,000,” Juffa said.
“People are helping themselves to better services by migrating to the urban centres.
“But in fact they are creating more problems for the Government (which is required) to provide additional services for the additional population.”
Executive director of the Office of Urbanisation Max Kep said it was part of development.
“The number of people flocking to the urban areas have maximised because some of their needs cannot be met in rural areas,” Kep said.
“For example, the towns and district stations would not be able to provide sufficient employment for people.”
He said the recent involvement in the Government’s affordable land and housing programme was part of the drive to address the urban drift.


24) PNG To Conduct Investor, Trade Forum In Paris, France
PM O’Neill working on ‘improved visa arrangement’ with Europe

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, June 24, 2015) – The Government plans to hold a trade forum in Paris next year following interest shown by European investors in Papua New Guinea.

Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said discussions were underway on “improved visa arrangements for Papua New Guineans travelling to European Union countries”.

He said following the success of the UK-PNG Trade and Investment Forum last week in London, and the positive reception in Paris, “future forums are likely to include France”.

“Next year we are looking at the trade and investment forum being held in Paris and alternate this with London each year,” he said.

O’Neill met business representatives and the European Union council president Donald Tusk.

The French Business Confederation hosted a breakfast where 30 companies showed interest in initiating or expanding their operations in PNG.

“There is significant interest in Papua New Guinea from the business community in the cities our delegation visited, and we must convert that interest into tangible business engagement,” O’Neill said.

“We cannot think of Europe as being too far away to matter.

“Europe offers an important market particularly for our agricultural products.

“There is also tremendous potential for strategic partnerships in areas that include banking, energy and resources.”

He discussed with Tusk what PNG was doing to combat illegal fishing.

The National


25) Jacksons airport transformed
By Online Editor
8:36 pm GMT+12, 23/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

The Port Moresby Jackson International Airport in Papua New Guinea is finally meeting world standard and is ready for the Pacific Games, says National Airports Corporation acting chief executive officer Joseph Tupiri.

Tupiri announced this Tuesday to brush aside media reports claiming that the airport is not ready to receive visitors who will start arriving for the Pacific Games next week.

“Port Moresby International Airport is the first and the last impression that our visitors could get of Papua New Guinea.

“For that reason, we are building the gateway of the country to a world class as NAC extremely cares about contributing into the nation building,” he said.

Tupiri said the K85 million (US$31 million) project of Jackson International Airport upgrading was done through a world class capacity development program and a powerful strategy to transform the airport to an efficient modern airport and that everyone can be proud of.

He said the upgrading of the International terminal include; a new departure lounge, relaxation, play and working areas for passengers, new duty-free shops for departure and arrival, and new specialty retail shops for food and beverages along with other maintenance work.

“NAC is partnering with Airport Council International and other top organisations in the world to run training for its staff and other important things to meet the global standard.

“Consultants have been brought in to look at the value of the upgrading and assessments have been carried out already,” Tupiri said.

He said NAC‘s strongest aim now is to develop the Port Moresby International Airport to become the gateway of the Pacific, and the upgrading done was a foundation laid for that adjective.

“Challenges faced in the last 12 months were congestion and security issues at the International Airport.

“However, for the first time in the history of Papua New Guinea, Port Moresby International Airport has a schedule now for the airport to solve the congestion problem while security has already been organised and provided,” said Tupiri.

He said airport environment is changing and 99.9 per cent of the NAC team are excited about their work and the outcome at last.

“It is not about the jobs, big-names or what we can gain anymore but it is about building this country and that will involve hard work and perseverance,” Tupiri said.



26) PNG corruption exposed in Australian sting

24 June 2015

Australia has been exposed as a safe haven for corrupt funds from Papua New Guinea with lawyers caught on video explaining how to deposit stolen money in Australian bank accounts.

Fairfax Media has recordings of an undercover sting showing PNG lawyer, Harvey Maladina, explaining how a law firm and a well-known Australian Queen’s counsel issue inflated invoices to conceal the movements of corrupt money.

His law firm partner, former Queensland crown prosecutor, Greg Sheppard, is shown on camera saying the “only way” to bribe foreign politicians and avoid getting caught is to pay “small dribs and drabs” disguised as commercial transactions.

The film opens a window into how Australian lawyers, accountants and migration agents enable corrupt politicians to shift stolen money into the relative safety of Australian bank accounts and real estate.

Both Mr Sheppard and Mr Maladina are considered to be close to the PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and senior members of his government.

Fairfax says until January Mr Sheppard was a director of the company providing security to the Australian run and funded Manus Islands asylum seeker detention centre.RNZI

27) Jokowi hits development hurdle in bid to release 90 Papuans

24 June 2015

A proposal in Indonesia’s Parliament to pardon political prisoners in Papua has been rejected.

The House of Representatives met on Monday to consider President Jokowi’s plan for a second release of Papuans who have been held as separatists.

Jokowi released five political prisoners last month, who had been jailed since 2003.

The new plan, said to include up to 90 political prisoners in Papua and West Papua,

The list includes the prominent political activist Filep Karma, who is serving a 15-year sentence for raising the banned Morning Star flag at a political rally in 2004.

But MPs have told Jokowi they won’t support the move unless there are concrete plans to hose down separatist tension in the provinces.

One committee member and MP told the Jakarta Globe that support will not be given unless the Government lays out a roadmap for developing the provinces.RNZI

28) Police arrest couple for alleged kidnapping

The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

A couple from Eastern Highlands was yesterday arrested and charged with “hijack for ransom”  of a two-year-old and detained at the Central police station cell in Lae.
The pair was found at Nawaeb Block near Bumbu River after a tip-off yesterday morning and was expected to appear in court today.
Rose Stanley, mother of the “kidnapped” child (Abraham), reported to police on Monday that her child went missing on June 9 between 11am and midday.
She said Abraham was playing with his cousins and went missing when she went to chew buai at a nearby roadside market at Second Street, Top Town.
“A man who was planting flowers told me that a short woman believed to be of Highlands origin walked by and took the child and walked away a few minutes ago,” she said.
A public notice was put up for two weeks until she allegedly received a phone call from one of the accused who said that the child was in their care. “The next day I called and the wife answered demanding a ransom of K1000,” Stanley said.
Investigator Cyrus Natil said after tip-off, Stanley was advised to lure the suspects to Nawaeb Block bus stop to receive her ransom in exchange for Abraham.
Stanley led the investigators and located the woman and she was apprehended.
Police got the woman into their vehicle and went to her house where the child was with the husband. The couple was charged with kidnapping for ransom.


29) Vt800 million climate change project launched
By Online Editor
7:49 pm GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Vanuatu

The government of Vanuatu and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) are working on a Vt800 million (US$7.6 million) climate change project for the rural communities in Vanuatu.

“Adaptation to Climate Change on the Coastal Zone of Vanuatu” or V-CAP is the name of this 5-year project.

V-CAP aims to improve the resilience of the coastal zone in Vanuatu to the impacts of climate change in order to sustain livelihoods, food production and improve the quality of life.

Project sites are selected in each province. The project site for Shefa is Vermali and Vermaul Area Council of Epi, South Santo Area Council (Sanma), all Torres Islands, South Malekula Area Council (Malampa) and all Tafea Islands.

V-CAP will carry out re-vegetation of road sidings, will rehabilitate river crossings, bridges, build public walking tracks and ‘climate proofing’ infrastructure.

The Government, through the project, aims to increased efforts to recovery from Cyclone Pam and build long-term community resilience to climate change.

Therefore, for 2015 the project will concentrate in the three severely affected provinces with a focus on Epi, Pentecost and Tafea outer islands. Once completed, will move to other sites next year.

V-CAP does not focus on infrastructure alone but will work with communities to encourage sustainable forest, water and agricultural management.

The Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department is responsible for the second component of V-CAP; the development of an efficient early warning system for cyclones and other natural disasters.

The Project Board launched V-CAP following the first Inception Workshop attended by Area Secretaries, Site Coordinators and Secretary Generals.

The Ministry of Climate Change and Natural Disasters, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, Forestry and Biodiversity, Public Works Department and the Department of Environment and Water Resource will be working closely with communities to deliver V-CAP.

The United Nations Development Program is implementing V-CAP with financial support from the Least Developed Country Fund of the Global Environment Fund.


30) 800 communities affected by climate change in Fiji
By Online Editor
5:30 pm GMT+12, 23/06/2015, Fiji

800 communities in Fiji have been identified to be affected by climate change.

Of this, forty-five are vulnerable to relocation in the next decade.

This is what stakeholders and communities involved are discussing on the development of a Relocation Guideline for Fiji.

This two day workshop will lay the platform for these stakeholders to share thoughts and experiences on communities battered by climate change and natural disasters.

It’s an issue that needs implementation by those who will be affected.

“You will be introduced at this workshop to the proposed steps for relocation and be provided with an opportunity to deliberate whether these processes and steps will work or not,” said Luke Daunivalu – Deputy Secretary for Fiji’s Foreign Affairs

Through an extensive mapping and profiling by stakeholders, several communities have been identified.

“We have been able to map 800 communities. Of those communities already mapped, 45 have been identified as vulnerable with the potential to be relocated in the next 5 to 10 years,” he said.

So far, the villages Vunidogoloa in Cakaudrove, Narikoso in Bua and Denimanu on Yadua Island in Bua have been identified for relocation.

The villages are also used as examples for Fiji’s Relocation Guide.

“Through this consultation, we will be able to identify the best processes and approach to ensure the long term survival of impacted communities,” he said.



31) Drilling to start on Kwila-1 well

The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

KINA Petroleum Ltd yesterday announced the spud of the Kwila-1 exploration well in petroleum prospecting licence (PPL) 337 near Madang.
Kwila-1 was operated by Heritage Oil Ltd under a farm-out agreement between Heritage and KPL, whereby Heritage would carry KPL through drilling and, if appropriate, testing of 2 wells.
The first of those wells, Raintree-1, has been drilled.
KPL would retain a 30 per cent participating interest in the licence on completion of drilling, and in event of a discovery would benefit from a carry through a seismic programme to appraise the field.
KPL managing director Richard Schroder said: “We look forward to the drilling at Kwila-1 which will test a trap with an associated seismic anomaly which Kina believes is within a sandstone body on the northern flank of the Banam Anticline, which remains the largest untested geological feature in Papua New Guinea.”

32) Fiji sugar industry in trouble without young people

24 June 2015

The Fiji Cane Growers Association says the future of the sugar industry is in trouble if it is unable to attract young people back to cane farming.

The General Secretary for the Association, Bala Dass, says most of Fiji’s 12-thousand sugar cane farmers are over 50 years old.

Mr Dass says if young people are to be attracted back land leases need to be lengthened, the payment system needs to change, and tools like cutters and fertiliser need to be subsidised.

“Definitely the sugar industry is in trouble because when this generations time goes away in about five or ten years time and they become old, then what will happen is that there will be nobody to work in the farm. There is lots of land left over here which is being unused.”

Bala Dass says the younger generation has moved away from the cane industry so they can get paid weekly in white collar jobs.RNZI

33) Call to pay attention to agriculture

The National, Wednesday June 24th, 2015

IMPROVING investment in the country’s agriculture sector is the way forward to dealing with Dutch Disease, Bank of PNG deputy governor Dr Gae Kauzi says.
Dutch Disease is the negative impact on an economy of anything that gives rise to a sharp inflow of foreign currency.
The currency inflows would lead to currency appreciation, making the country’s other products less price competitive on the export market.
Kauzi reiterated the stance by Bank of PNG Governor Loi Bakani in his last monetary policy statement that agriculture sector needed more investment.
“Pay more attention to agriculture and do it in action,” he told the PNG Update forum last week.
“If we do this, we can turn PNG into a main agriculture exporter and developing agriculture is the best way is the best way to withstand the Dutch Disease.”
According to Tony Shirley, a rural financial consultant from Australia, financial assistance to farmers was one of the better government policies which had boosted agriculture in the country.
Institute of National Affairs executive director Paul Barker had said although the Government recognised that agriculture was important, it had not really been the case.
Meanwhile, Farmers and Settlers Association Inc president Wilson Thompson told the forum there was enough land, labour and skills that required capital or financial support and support services from the Government.

“… individuals should be assisted and protected by the state and provided market access and support through cooperatives and the land registration so they can contribute to food production, food security and economic development particularly in the rural areas,” Thompson said.

34) Farmers export large coconut oil quantities

The National, Tuesday June 23rd, 2015

COCONUT farmers from Aroma Coast, Abau, in Central have recently started exporting large amount of oil from their coconuts, Kokonas Idastri Koporesen says.
Managing director Dr James Kaiulo said the farmers could now benefit greatly as their coconuts processed into high valued products such as virgin coconut oil and soap, by Aroma Coconut Products Corporative Society Ltd.
“The coconut farmers can now rip countless benefits from their coconuts been processed into high value products such as virgin coconut oil and soap,” he said.
The project was made possible through a partnership between the Government through Department of National Planning, KIK and PNG Cocoa and Coconut Institute Ltd  and small to medium enterprises in the area.
ACPC manager Garry Genolamar said the project had been buying more than 20,000 coconuts per month from nearby villages in Aroma Coast and had plans to increase and extend its buying depots all throughout Abau district.
“Over five tonnes of VCO has been exported since 2013 in small quantities but this export of 1000 litres VCO and 1000 bars of coconut soap signifies its first biggest export. The collaborative partnership with Government, commodity boards enabled ACPC to meet the increasing domestic and international demand,” he said. Genolamar praised MP Sir Puka Temu for revitalising the project in 2010.

“The farmers have now unleashed the burden of marketing their coconuts in Port Moresby, where they spend almost 70 per cent of their earnings on freight cost alone.”

35) Buyers aplaud South Pacific Tourism Exchange 2015
By Online Editor
00:10 am GMT+12, 24/06/2015, Fiji

International Buyers (travel agents and wholesalers) have given the South Pacific Tourism Exchange (SPTE) 2015 the ‘thumbs-up’ after two-days of successful business-to-business meetings at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre last week.

Tour operators, hotel and accommodation providers as well as National Tourism Offices from 16 Pacific Island Countries converged into Melbourne with over 60 international buyers from the traditional source markets of Australia and New Zealand to the emerging long haul markets of the United States, China and Europe to conduct business and networking.

The ANZ sponsored event organized by the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) was the second inaugural exchange after the successful launch in Auckland in 2014.

SPTO Chief Executive Ilisoni Vuidreketi stated SPTE 2015 was bigger than initially anticipated and the large number of buyers and sellers at this year’s event is indicative of the growing interest in the Pacific region’s only tourism exchange.

“The overwhelming response to SPTE 2015 from both the buyers and sellers has contributed to its success! Our SPTE team worked especially hard to ensure that the quality of buyers from our international markets would add value to our exchange, especially for our regional member countries and private sector. I am pleased to say that this has indeed paid dividends”, Vuidreketi added.

“This year we also extended the invitation to the international media that were in Melbourne for the Australian Tourism Exchange and we hosted a networking cocktail event for the media to meet our Pacific sellers. We believe this has also been a successful inclusion into our program with the high visibility we are receiving on SPTE in the media”, he continued.

“We would also like to thank our sponsors ANZ, Fiji Airways, the European Union funded Pacific Regional Tourism and Capacity Building Programme, Nauru Air Corporation, Tonga Tourism Authority, Samoa Tourism Authority, Pure Fiji, Papua New Guinea Tourism and all those that contributed to a successful SPTE 2015”, Vuidreketi reiterated

“We look forward to hosting another SPTE in 2016 and will announce the dates soon,” he said


36) Anti-fisheries protestors in court

By Online Editor
00:08 am GMT+12, 24/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

The delayed Pacific Marine Industrial Zone (PMIZ in Madang has become the issue of a human rights fight for those living in the impact area.

Sumkar Open MP Ken Fairweather made this statement after National Court judge David Cannings adjourned the PMIZ case to July 21 after considering whether to hear the 11 defendants present today  in court.

The adjournment was sought by both lawyers: Gordon Haumu,for Madang Provincial Government and Brian Waffi for the Department of Commerce Trade and Industry.

Waffi said  he needed the time to make amendments and serve his clients while Haumu said he needed further clarification on whose side the provincial government would be taking if any to better inform the court.

The second hearing Tuesday between the Department of Trade,Commerce and Industry as first and second plaintiffs,and eleven  others, is an attempt by the State to get the project completed before the crucial deadline of 2016. The State will be obliged to pay EXIM Bank of China,K500 million as default if it does not complete  the project by that time.

The State had received a US$75 million from the EXIM China bank in 2010. To date copies of the loan agreement,the environmental impact study report and the project agreement have not been seen at the provincial level.

Fairweather, who is the fourth defendant and an opposition member in the Madang provincial assembly, said that to date he has not seen  any documents from concerned departments since the inception of the project.

“It is not about PMIZ but about freedom of speech. This is a free world where people have the right to speak. You can’t come shooting at the hips and be bullied. Neither Sir Angmai Bilas nor I will be bullied.Typical of the minister and his department,” he said.

Nancy Sullivan,a fisheries expertwho is the first defendant,joined the proceedings as an ardent advocate against  marine pollution and its socio economic impacts.

Environmental advocateDorothy Tekwie is the second defendant and is assisting the impact area people on issues regarding landowner rights and exploitation of resources.

“I am happy the court has ordered the plaintiffs to bear our costs because I spent my own funds to help the unfortunate people of our country。If I don’t do it, who will,” she said.



37) One week for Ryan to prepare 7s team for Pacific Games
By Online Editor
8:33 pm GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Fiji

The Vodafone Fiji sevens team to the Pacific Games assembles next week for a week of training before they head off to Papua New Guinea to win gold and break a 12-year gold medal drought.

Manager Paula Biu said one week would be enough to prepare the team as the players are involved in provincial rugby and all of them are fit.

“Coach Ben Ryan arrives this week and the team moves into camp next week. We are taking our strongest team because we want to win gold,” Biu said.

Interesting inclusion in the team is Fiji Warriors Wing Eroni Vasiteri, Suva halfback Keponi Paul and Savenaca Rawaca who is also named in the Flying Fijians squad to move into camp next Wednesday, a day after the Fiji sevens team.

Biu said Ryan and Flying Fijians coach have been in talks regarding Rawaca.

Fiji last won a Pacific Games gold medal in rugby sevens in 2003.

The 19 man squad: Abele Yalayalatabua, Amenoni Nasilasila, Apisai Domolailai, Emosi Mulevoro, Eroni Vasiteri, Isake Katonibau, Jasa Veremalua, Josaia Wini, Keponi Paul, Kitione Taliga, Maueli Lagai, Pio Tuwai, Osea Kolinisau, Semi Kunabuli, Savenaca Rawaca, Jerry Tuwai, Sitiveni Waqa, Vatemo Ravouvou, Viliame Mata.


38) Solomon Airlines to fly Solomon Islands & Kiribati athletes to 2015 Pacific Games

By Online Editor
8:31 pm GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Solomon Islands

Solomon Airlines has been engaged by the Solomon Islands Government and the Kiribati National Olympic Committee to ferry athletes of both countries to Port Moresby to compete in the 2015 Pacific Games taking place from 04-18 July.

The charters will commence on 01 July when the national carrier will fly the Kiribati team and the Solomon Islands under 23 soccer team to the PNG capital.

Further charters are scheduled to take place on 02 and 09 July and again on 16 and 19 July when the teams from both countries return.

Solomon Airlines’ General Manager of Commercial and Operations, Gus Kraus advised the airline was doing everything possible to ensure the extra flights had minimal effect on current schedules and particularly the Brisbane, Nadi and Port Vila services.

“The charters are a one-off event and we are urging our valued passengers to contact our offices for updates to ensure they are aware of and can avoid any disruption to their travel plans,” Mr Kraus said.

“I would like to thank our passengers for their understanding and continued support as well as their patience during the charter periods.”.


39) World Champ to Lead Nauru to 2015 Pacific Games
By Online Editor
8:28 pm GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Nauru

World Champion power lifter, Jezza Uepa, will lead team Nauru to the 2015 Pacific Games.

The smallest Pacific island nation of Nauru has produced some of the world’s best weightlifters and power lifters, who will be competing in this year’s Pacific Games in Port Moresby.

Jeeza recently competed at the Classic Powerlifting World Championship 2015 in Salo, Finland, from the 5th to the 14th of June.

At the recent 2015 Pacific Invitational championships in Australia, Nauruan, Jezza Uepa, produced high quality classic powerlifting and broke two world records – officially making Jezza one of the world’s strongest powerlifting men.

He will lead team Nauru to the Pacific Games. Jezza holds the current world record of 415 kilograms in the squat discipline of classic powerlifting.

He also holds a world record of lifting 978.5 kilograms.

Jezza has been training in preparation for the games, and is confident in performing to international standards, to grab gold for Nauru.

Coach Gerard Jones has said that Nauru is proud of having produced such global super stars in powerlifting. He added that they are now focused on physically and mentally preparing ourselves themselves for July.



40) Cash incentives for Team Fiji athletes to win gold at the Pacific Games

By Online Editor
8:24 pm GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Fiji

Team Fiji athletes will be given cash bonuses for every gold won at the Pacific Games.

The bonuses will come in three categories – individual, pairs and team events.

Athletes can receive up to $2500 (US$1,201) if they do well.

Team Fiji athletes will be offered financial bonus for winning Gold medals at the Pacific Games this year.

Major sponsors Bank of South Pacific, making this announcement with our athletes now determined to win gold.

The monetary incentive will certainly motivate our athletes to do well.

Meanwhile the athletes were farewelled with strong words of encouragement from Fiji former cricket captain Cecil Browne.

Apart from the cash incentive, there will also be additional incentives from other major sponsors.


41) 18 swimmers to be part of Team Fiji, Students Boost Team to the Pacific Games
By Online Editor

8:22 pm GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Fiji

Eighteen swimmers will be part of Team Fiji’s contingent to the Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea.

Most of them used the Age Group Nationals over the weekend to improve their times and gauge their performances so they can be selected for other tournaments.

Although it’s a very young team Fiji Swimming officials are confident they will do well.

Eighteen swimmers will be part of Team Fiji’s contingent to the Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea.

Most of them used the Age Group Nationals over the weekend to improve their times and gauge their performances so they can be selected for other tournaments.

“We’ve been blessed with some really great weather in the last days and it complemented some of the fine performances that we’ve seen in the last three days also. This BSP Sponsored Age Group Nationals not only to prepare swimmers for the Pacific Games but it’s also a qualifier for us to the Latina World Championships in Qazan,” said Ben Rova – President – Nadi Barracudas

Although it’s a very young team Fiji Swimming officials are confident they will do well.

“So it’s not only about improving on times and preparations for the Pacific Swimmers but it’s also kind of make the final cut for Qazan and the Rio Olympics. For the Fiji Swimmers going to the Pacific Games we hope that they’ll get good results and you can’t hope for anything less,” he said…..PACNEWS

Meanwhile,Fijian women’s football coach Charlene Lockington is confident her team will do well at the 2015 Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea next month.

“We mostly have youth players in the team and four of them are high school students,” she said.

“We have some senior players who played in the 2007 Pacific Games in Samoa. PNG, they beat us in Samoa in 2007, but this time we aim to get even,” Lockington said.

Bolstering the side are former Fijiana and goal keeper Mereoni Yabakidrau, Viniana Raiwai and students Luisa Tamanitokula, Annette Nainima, Sonali Rao and Jasper sprinter Miriama Naiobasali.

“We have also secured the services of Vodafone Fijian U20 goalkeeper coach Iosefo Vosaboto who is doing a good job,” she said. “The women have shown a lot of sacrifices and dedication towards preparation.”.


42) Wellington Sevens changes dates

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Update: 4:29PM The Wellington round of the World Rugby Sevens is to move to a Saturday-Sunday format and will be played at the end of January.

The event is teaming up with the Wellington Cup race meeting.

Next year the Wellington Cup will be raced at Trentham on Saturday January 23rd on Wellington Anniversary weekend and the Wellington Sevens will be the following weekend on January 30th and 31st.

The Sevens has usually been played on a Friday and Saturday in early February.

This year’s sevens tournament failed to sell out and organisers have been looking to reinvigerate interest with the contract for the tournament up in 2016.

Wellington Racing Club Vice President and Mayor of Upper Hutt Wayne Guppy says the two organisations had been looking at ways to work more closely together for some time.

Sevens Wellington General Manager Steve Dunbar says the two organisations will offer joint package options so Wellingtonians and visitors could make the most of the sport and fun.

The 2016 event is likely to include a number of All Blacks as they push for Olympic spots in the sevens team.Fijitimes

43) Australia ready for England

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

LONDON – Australia say they’re ready and waiting to take a new-look England head on in the Ashes starting next month.

Following a horror showing at the World Cup, where they were bundled out before reaching the knockout stages, England vowed to play a more exciting brand of cricket.

A drawn series in the West Indies followed their shambolic World Cup and led to the sacking of coach Peter Moores and ultimately the signing of Australian Trevor Bayliss, who takes the reins later this week.

England are confidently pointing to their improved form against New Zealand, which has included entertaining drawn series in both the Test and one-day formats, as proof they’ve turned the corner.

Australia are inclined to agree, and they’re ready to fight fire with fire.

“We’re expecting a really tough series against a team that will come out quite hard against us and if they decided to try to play that positive brand we’ll be prepared for that,” Australian skipper Michael Clarke said.

44) Waratahs target second rugby title

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

SYDNEY – Veteran back rower Stephen Hoiles has revealed the Waratahs will take a backs to the wall mentality into their Super Rugby home semi-final against the Highlanders on Saturday.

Hoiles believes any of the four teams contesting the two trans-tasman semi-finals could win the competition, with the Hurricanes hosting the Brumbies in Saturday’s other matchup.

Defending champions NSW earned a week off before the semi-finals for a second straight year, but Hoiles acknowledged it had been a harder slog than last year’s super-charged sprint to the last four over the second half of the season.

“The season has been a little bit different to last year because we’ve had to fight for a lot more wins,” Hoiles said.

“We haven’t had that dream run we went on last year, we haven’t put sides away by 20, 30 points like we did a lot last year.

“We’ve had to work really hard for every game and I think that has helped us.

“We’re trying to do something no Australian team has ever done before (win back-to-back titles), so we very much feel as though we’ve got our backs against the wall and that’s the mentality we’re taking in and I think the wins we’ve had this year have reflected that.”

Hoiles had plenty of respect for a Highlanders side he felt probably went under the radar in the red-hot New Zealand conference until the last few weeks and that their pack hadn’t got the credit they merited.

“They don’t get the accolades they deserve and I think it’s probably the way they like it down in the south of New Zealand,” Hoiles said.

45) State of Origin: Josh Jackson cleared to play game three as Bulldogs back rower has charge downgraded by NRL judiciary

Updated 24 June 2015, 20:55 AEST

Canterbury back rower Josh Jackson is free to play in Origin III for New South Wales after successfully getting his dangerous throw charge downgraded by the NRL judiciary.

Josh Jackson’s downgrade appeal in front of the NRL judiciary was successful, freeing him to play Origin III for the Blues. (Credit: Getty Images)

Jackson was slapped with a grade-two dangerous throw on Penrith playmaker Jamie Soward in the first half of the Bulldogs’ win over the Panthers on Saturday night.

He would have missed three weeks if his appeal was unsuccessful, but will now only miss the Bulldogs clash with Melbourne on Monday night.

Jackson expressed his relief at being cleared to play in the Origin series decider, but admitted he would need to improve his tackling to avoid a similar charge in the future.

“Yeah, it’s never good to miss any footy or any Bulldogs games, but it’s great that I have a chance to be selected again (for New South Wales),” Jackson said

“We obviously took the plea on a grade on charge, so it definitely wasn’t a good tackle and I’ve been penalised for it by missing this week’s game, so hopefully I can adjust my technique in the future.

“I was a chance to miss three games for the Bulldogs and a possible Origin game, so I was pretty concerned.

“But we looked at a few past videos and we were pretty confident, so now we’re happy with the result.”Game three is at Lang Park on July 8.ABC


Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1106 ( Monday 22 June 2015 )


1a ) West Papua Plans Final Push For MSG Membership
Seeking full membership but would accept other status

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 22, 2015) – The United Liberation Movement for West Papua is planning its final push ahead of this week’s vote on whether to admit West Papua into the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

The MSG leaders’ summit will be held in Solomon Islands this week, where a decision will be made on whether to accept West Papua as a member.

West Papua’s bid was rejected for lack of a unified movement at last year’s summit, which led to the formation of the United Liberation Movement and the submission of another application.

The group’s spokesperson, Benny Wenda, says he is confident the group will be admitted this time round, and will spend this week lobbying the MSG countries.

“At the moment we’ve already had a meeting here and some of the ministers are coming next week, so we hope that this is very historic and we’re trying to use many channels to try and convince that West Papua is Melanesia.”

Benny Wenda says while West Papua is seeking full membership, it will accept observer or associate status.

Radio New Zealand International 

1b ) West Papuans hope unity will guarantee MSG membership

By Online Editor
11:43 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Solomon Islands

By Nic Maclellan in Honiara

Indonesian officials are lobbying for an upgrade to associate membership of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG), while a renewed membership application by a united West Papuan coalition will be discussed at this week’s MSG leaders’ summit in Solomon Islands.

Papua New Guinea and Fiji have expressed their opposition to the bid for full MSG membership by the United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP), a coalition of groups opposed to Indonesian rule in the western half of the island of New Guinea. In contrast, MSG members Vanuatu and New Caledonia’s FLNKS independence movement have expressed solidarity with the West Papuan nationalist movement and their membership application.

Summit host Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare, who takes over as MSG chair for the next two years, must forge a consensus between these divergent positions. Despite these differences, the MSG’s new engagement on the West Papua issue contrasts with the silence of the regional Pacific Islands Forum – there has been no mention of West Papua in Forum communiques since 2006.

In March 2013, the Port Vila-based West Papua National Council for Liberation (WPNCL) lodged a formal membership application to join the MSG. The application was deferred at the last MSG summit, held in Noumea in 2013, to allow a Foreign Ministers mission to visit Indonesia. A special MSG leaders’ summit in Port Moresby in June 2014 again deferred the WPNCL application and agreed “to invite all groups to form an inclusive and united umbrella group in consultation with Indonesia to work on submitting a fresh application.”

West Papuan representatives are in Honiara this week, lobbying MSG officials and leaders and stressing that they have responded to the call for unity expressed in 2014.

The Vanuatu government hosted a December 2014 meeting to bring together Jayapura-based activists and exiled campaigners, forming a united front between competing groups. The newly created United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP) unites different strands of the West Papuan nationalist movement: the West Papua National Council for Liberation (WPNCL), Federal Republic of West Papua (FRWP) and the National Parliament of West Papua (NPWP), which incorporates the National Committee for West Papua (KPNB).

Today, the ULM secretariat includes Secretary General Octo Mote, spokesperson Benny Wenda and executive officers Rex Rumakiek, Jacob Rumbiak and Leonie Tanggahma. These exiled ULM executive members have been joined in Honiara by a range of leaders from inside West Papua, including Edison Maromi of the Federal Republic of West Papua and Dominikus Surabut, the chair of Lapago region of the Papuan Customary Council (Dewan Adat Papua).

ULM Executive officer Jacob Rumbiak stressed that while some leaders were living in exile, the movement’s decision making was taking place amongst political parties and civic movements inside West Papua.

Speaking through a translator, Dominikus Surabut agreed that there was unprecedented co-ordination amongst different strands of the West Papua nationalist movement.

“Our experience over the last 53 years is that there’s been a history of disunity in the struggle, with competing claims for leadership,” said Surabut. “So this opportunity that has been created through the creation of the United Liberation Movement, is really an excellent solution for the people of West Papua.”

Edison Waromi told Islands Business that MSG governments had forced groups in the independence movement to better co-ordinate their efforts.

“The birth of the ULMWP is actually a direct result of the challenge put forward by the MSG leaders,” said Waromi. “After the previous application in 2013 and 2014, the MSG leaders said it wasn’t fully representative. They challenged us to resubmit another application from a more unified group. So the ULMWP was formed in response to this challenge and through great effort, we feel that we have successfully responded to this challenge. Indonesia is scared of us, now that we’re united.”

Waromi is quick to deny that there are competing applications for membership from different parts of the movement: “I want to state clearly that the Federal Republic of West Papua gives their full and unequivocal support to the United Liberation Movement and its application for MSG membership.”

Vanuatu has long supported the West Papuan nationalist movement with practical and diplomatic aid. Port Vila hosts an office for the WPNCL, which has lobbied for MSG membership in line with the precedent set by the Kanak independence movement (the FLNKS, rather than the Government of New Caledonia, represents New Caledonia in the MSG).

However the recent no-confidence motion that saw the defeat of Prime Minister Joe Natuman’s government raised concern that Vanuatu’s long-standing commitment on West Papua might be affected.

Over the weekend, ULM Secretary General Octo Mote travelled from Honiara to Port Vila, to lock in support from the new government led by Prime Minister Sato Kilman and Deputy Prime Minister Moana Carcasses Kalosil who arrived in Honiara on Sunday.

“From my trip, I must say that Vanuatu’s support is still there,” Mote told Islands Business from Port Vila.

“Nothing has changed on West Papua. There are differences in approach between the old government and new, but it’s not political parties that support us, it’s the nation, the Vanuatu people.”

Mote re-iterated that his delegation was still seeking full MSG membership, but acknowledged recent statements by the Solomon Islands government, calling on MSG leaders to consider observer status rather that full membership.

“Of course we are still pressing for full membership, but if the MSG leaders offer observer status, I’ll take it,” said Mote. “West Papua is now a Melanesian issue. Some people at home who are hoping for full MSG membership will be upset, but it’s important we sit down equally with the Indonesians. If Indonesia are MSG observers, and we are observers, why not?”

Mote added: “For myself, it’s important for us to sit down equally with the Indonesians, to talk together. If the Kanaks can sit down to create the Noumea Accord with the French, why can’t we create a similar agreement?”

Despite this call for dialogue, West Papuan leaders in Honiara are critical of recent initiatives by Indonesian President Joko Widodo, who visited West Papua in May 2015. Since his election, Jokowi has promised new dialogue on West Papua, and granted concessions such as the release of five political prisoners and an announcement that international media would have free access to West Papua.

At a press conference in Merauke last month, Jokowi stated: “Starting from today, foreign journalists are allowed and free to come to Papua, just as they can [visit] other regions.”

This pledge was immediately undercut by his Minister for Political, Legal and Security affairs Tedjo Edhy Purdijatno, who confirmed that foreign journalists would still be screened and must obtain permission from the security forces s to travel to the highlands: “We’ll allow it, on condition that they report on what they see, not go around looking for facts that aren’t true from armed groups…There’s a lot of news out there that makes it look like [human rights] violations are taking place here all the time, but I don’t think that’s the case.”

For ULM representatives lobbying in Honiara, these concessions do not address the core issues, and are simply designed to blunt this momentum of the West Papuan nationalist movement.

According to ULM Executive officer Rex Rumakiek, “while we would welcome greater media access to report what is really going on, the real question is to allow freedom of expression for the people of West Papua. The prisoners who have been released are not criminals, but acted politically to support human rights.”

Despite Jokowi’s call for dialogue, Indonesian security forces have continued to crack down on dissent.

Rumakiek noted: “In the last month, nearly 500 people have been arrested demonstrating in support of the MSG membership application.”

Customary chief Dominikus Surabut told Islands Business that now was the time for action by Pacific leaders: “If the leaders of the Melanesian countries really want to save us as fellow Melanesians of the same race, as fellow kin, then we ask them to receive us as members of the same family. Those of us who are leaders of the struggle, feel that in order to resolve the conflict in West Papua, then we have to become a member of MSG.”.


1c) West Papua high on MSG agenda,Melanesian leaders meet to discuss trade, security and development

By Online Editor
11:40 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Solomon Islands

By Nic Maclellan in Honiara

Nearly 1,000 people marched through the streets of Honiara on Friday to show their support for West Papuan self-determination, as Melanesian leaders gather for an important summit in the Solomon Islands capital.

The application by the United Liberation Movement of West Papua (ULMWP) for membership of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) is high on the agenda at this week’s meeting.

The MSG membership includes Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Front de Liberation Nationale Kanak et Socialiste (FLNKS), the Kanak independence coalition of New Caledonia.

The debate over West Papua is affected by strengthening relations between Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Indonesia, which has held MSG observer status since 2011. With a strong contingent of West Papuan leaders in Honiara to lobby for support, the membership application is being widely debated in the Solomon Islands media. But the Melanesian officials, foreign ministers and prime ministers who meet this week have a full agenda, with policy discussions on trade, sport, policing and the region’s overarching plan for the next 25 years, known as the “MSG 2038 Prosperity for All Plan.”

The growing awareness of Indonesian human rights violations in West Papua, spread through Facebook and other social media, has transformed public awareness of the issue in Solomon Islands and other MSG countries.

Around Honiara, young people are wearing Morning Star T-shirts, while leading Solomon Islands academic Tarcisius Tara Kabutaulaka has called for action in a widely re-published opinion piece. The noted PNG musician George Telek performed at a public concert near Honiara’s Chinatown this weekend, in solidarity with the West Papuan movement.

But popular support for the ULMWP membership bid – including hundreds of people rallying in Jayapura and other towns in West Papua – has not yet ensured MSG governments agreement. After an earlier application was deferred in 2013, Papua New Guinea and Fiji have both endorsed Jakarta’s opposition to full membership for the ULMWP. In contrast, the FLNKS and – until earlier this month – Vanuatu have been staunch supporters.

On Thursday, Solomon Islands Prime Minister Mannasseh Sogavare announced that his government “will endorse West Papua to be an observer of the MSG and this observer status is given only to one united group. Solomon Islands government will agree that any submission for full membership of the MSG by a group representing Melanesians Indonesia must be united and done in consultation with Indonesia as agreed by MSG leaders in 2013 2014.”

Sogavare also announced that the Solomon Islands government would “encourage MSG to continue to explore avenues for Indonesia in its interest to be an associate member of MSG, within the guidelines approved by leaders in 2013 and 2014.”

Honiara’s compromise proposal has been met with criticism from a range of Solomon Islands church, community and political leaders, who have rallied public support for the ULMWP (a broad coalition of West Papuan nationalist groups which includes the National Parliament for West Papua, the Federal Republic of West Papua, and the National Coalition for Liberation).

Vanuatu has long led the regional support for West Papuan self-determination. But Vanuatu’s participation in this week’s summit has been a source of uncertainty, following the recent no-confidence motion that brought down the government of Prime Minister Joe Natuman, in favour of his former Foreign Minister Sato Kilman Livtuvanu.

Natuman is a long-time supporter of independence for West Papua and New Caledonia. In contrast, while serving previously as Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Kilman has sought to expand Vanuatu’s ties to Indonesia. While the ongoing dispute in Port Vila is driven by domestic concerns and a court case over alleged corruption, the fallout will affect the ULMWP’s application.

With a court challenge scheduled for Monday afternoon and the possibility of another urgent no-confidence motion in the wind, the fluid situation in Port Vila has left MSG officials awaiting news of Vanuatu’s final delegation to the leaders’ summit on Thursday and Friday.

Since its founding in 1988, the MSG has developed a diverse portfolio of activities. The “MSG 2038 Prosperity for all Plan,” to be discussed this week, grew out of the work of an Eminent Persons Group led by former Fiji Foreign Minister Kaliopate Tavola, and provides a roadmap for sub-regional activities over the next 25 years.
The MSG Secretariat in Port Vila now coordinates a complex range of ministerial meetings and technical working groups, including the MSG Green Growth Framework; the MSG Trade Agreement; an Inshore Fisheries Roadmap; and discussions between CEOs of Melanesian National Provident and Pension Funds and Governors of Central Banks.

In Honiara this week, leaders will discuss the third phase of the MSG Trade Agreement (MSGTA3), an inter-island treaty first signed in 1993. The MSG’s original focus on trade in goods has now been superseded by a much broader agenda, focused on trade in services, intellectual property regimes and labour mobility. Before the summit, MSG Director for Trade, Investment and Economic Development Peni Sikivou said: “The MSGTA is being reviewed and under its current draft version, abbreviated as MSGTA3, new chapters on Services, Investment, Labour Mobility and Government Procurement are being incorporated into the Agreement.”

In 2014, MSG trade ministers adopted the Port Moresby Declaration, calling for free trade amongst the Melanesian nations by 2017. At this week’s summit in Honiara, officials and foreign ministers will review the reports of technical working groups on services and investment, and discuss the MSG Private Sector Development (PSD) Strategy that is supported under the EU-funded Pacific Integration Technical Assistance Project (PITAP).

The announcement last week that Australia will expand its Seasonal Worker Program (SWP) raises important opportunities for the Melanesian countries, which are seeking to increase remittance flows to their economies. But the context for Australia’s offer – that Pacific leaders must sign on to the proposed PACER-Plus free trade agreement – will raise questions for countries about how much to open their services and finance sectors to corporations from Australia and New Zealand.

On Thursday and Friday, officials considered a draft Implementation Framework for the “MSG 2038 Prosperity for all Plan,” to be presented to minister and leaders this week. Agenda items also covered the Melanesian Festival of Arts and Culture (MFAC), and the MSG Observer Mission to Fiji’s 2014 Elections.

A major focus of the MSG Secretariat’s work is security, with the MSG considering the establishment of a MSG Security/Defence Ministers Meeting, to parallel the regional South Pacific Defence Ministers Meeting first held in 2013. Since 2011, the MSG has also been developing an agreement to establish a Regional Police Academy

On Monday and Tuesday, the MSG Foreign Ministers Meeting (FMM) will include the outgoing chair Caroline Machoro-Reignier of New Caledonia’s Kanak Socialist National Liberation Front (FLNKS), together with foreign ministers Rimbink Pato of Papua New Guinea, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola of Fiji, and Milner Tozaka of Solomon Islands. Vanuatu’s representation is in flux with a court case in Port Vila scheduled for Monday afternoon.

PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill will travel to Solomon Islands following a week-long visit to Europe, where he led a delegation of government and industry figures seeking greater investment from the United Kingdom and other EU nations in PNG’s booming oil and gas sector. Later this week, O’Neill will formally inaugurate a new PNG high commission in Honiara, a reflection of PNG’s expanding investment in hotels, tourism and other sectors in fellow MSG countries.

The PNG leader will also be consulting with MSG partners over core agenda items for the next meeting of the Pacific Islands Forum, which will be held in Papua New Guinea in September.

The new Secretary General of the Forum Secretariat, Dame Meg Taylor, made her first visit to the MSG Secretariat in Port Vila last February. Taylor, a former PNG ambassador to the United Nations and long-serving official of the World Bank Group, is coordinating a new Framework for Pacific regionalism, with a regional subcommittee developing proposals to put before leaders at the PNG Forum.

With Papua New Guinea also scheduled to host the next APEC Summit in 2018, decisions taken this week in Honiara around trade, security and West Papua will also affect Port Moresby’s vision of providing a bridge between the Pacific islands and the emerging Asian economies.


 2a ) Air Niugini inaugural flight to Vanuatu

By Online Editor
11:48 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guineda National Flag Carrier, Air Niugini is set to make its maiden commercial flight into Vanuatu capital Port Vila, this Wednesday 24 June.

This comes as Air Niugini seeks to open up new routes in the Pacific Region and other overseas destinations.

The new flight is been made possible under the tripartite code share arrangement between Air Vanuatu and Air Solomon Islands.

Air Niugini will use its Fokker 70 series to expand this service to Port Vila via Homiara, Solomon Islands, as announced by its Board Chairman, Sir Frederick Reiher, earlier this year.

“Re-fleeting program, Air Niugini is undertaking over the next three to five years. It will further expand the use of jet aircraft on a major domestic route to give our passengers are fast and more comfortable service between our major centers. But long range capability of the aircraft will also enable the Fokker-70 to operate Port Moresby-Cairns route as well as new routes to key centres in the Pacific.

“I am pleased to note that following a recent tripartite code-share agreement between Air Niugini and Solomon Air and Air Vanuatu, Air Niugini will commence flights to Vila, Vanuatu via Honiara in early June with the Fokker-70. And hopefully beyond to New Zealand, said Sir Frederick.

Sir Frederick said the arrangement is aimed at strengthening and promoting understanding partnership between the Melanesian Spearhead Group airline industry.


2b) Ol skolaship blong semesta 2: Yu save aplae from naoia
USP Foundation / Formation Continue du Cycle Secondaire à l’USP


The scholarships are open to all Ni-Vanuatu students enrolling in Foundation courses at USP Emalus Campus in Semester 2, 2015, who are residents of Port Vila.
Scholarships will only cover tuition fees for 1 unit per student per semester.
Scholarships will be awarded based on academic performance:
- on Secondary School results for students beginning Foundation-level studies
- on GPA for continuing Foundation-level students.
Additional criteria, to be applied at the discretion of the Selection Committee, are gender and financial circumstances of the applicant.

Application Forms are available now from the Student Academic Services Office, Emalus Campus, Port Vila.
Closing date for applications: Friday 10th July 2015
Announcement of successful applicants: Friday 31st July 2015

These scholarships will be awarded from the “Port Vila Scholarship Scheme”, which has been established with funding provided by the Hon. Ralph Regenvanu, MP for Port Vila


Le programme de bourses scolaires est ouvert à tous les étudiants Ni-Vanuatu, résidents de Port Vila, inscrits en Formation Continue du Cycle Secondaire à l’Université du Pacifique-Sud, Campus Emalus pour le Semestre 2, 2015.
Les bourses couvrent uniquement les frais de scolarité du Semestre 2 pour la Formation Continue du Cycle Secondaire.
Les bourses seront octroyées en fonction des résultats scolaires.
D’autres critères pourront se rajouter, tels que les conditions financières de la famille du postulant et le sexe.
Toute décision est à la discrétion du Comité de sélection.

Les formulaires d’inscription sont disponibles au Service de la Scolarité (Student Academic Services Office) et à la Coordinatrice du programme francophone à l’UPS, Campus Emalus, Port Vila.
Date de clôture des inscriptions : vendredi 10 juillet 2015
Date de publication des bénéficiaires de bourse : vendredi 31 juillet 2015

Ces bourses font partie du “Programme de bourses scolaires de Port Vila”, créé et parrainé par le député de Port Vila, Ralph Regenvanu

Ta, MP Ralph Regenvanu -
3) Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 20 June 2015

by bobmakin

  • The Independent reminds everyone the bribery case is on Tuesday and the constitutional case is listed for Monday. Tuesday will determine whether the 16 MPs in the bribery case will stand trial on 7 July. The Independent points out the judiciary will treat the matter as any other criminal case. In addition, says the Indy “the Judiciary will not entertain any order issued by the current government until the matter is settled in court.” A Daily Post editorial calls on politicians to set aside their differences and put the national interest first as its nationals require.
  • Daily Post leads with the private sector calling for a repeal of the Industrial Development Act which came into being to promote private sector led developmentbut lacked completion of discussions with the Chamber of Commerce (VCCI) and Manufacturers’ Association (VMEA). Amendments might have been possible had the short-lived sitting of Parliament not been closed by the new Speaker.
  • A 16 kg petition from 150,000 West Papuans, organised by the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP), is in Port Vila awaiting the approval of PM Kilman, not known for strong secession views on behalf of West Papua. It goes to the MSG Leaders’ Summit in Honiara this coming week and concerns West Papua’s application for membership of the MSG. Dan McGary makes a useful editorial contribution regarding West Papua in the Post.
  • A cinema has returned to the capital in the Tana Russet Plaza, the Tana Ciné. The Plaza is open for business with its various store holders as from today. The Independent gives an explanation and story of the creation of the Plaza.


4) Samoa First Union to be launched 29 June
By Online Editor
11:19 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Samoa

First Union, New Zealand’s second largest private sector union, is going international with the launch of Samoa’s only private sector union, Samoa First Union.

“Samoa First Union is building on the legacy of former private sector unions like the old National Union of Workers,” says Samoa First Union co-ordinator Jerome Mika, “but our union differs because we have the benefit of support from an established union in New Zealand.”

“This means Samoa First Union will be sustainable.”

“Samoa became an International Labour Organisation member in 2005, but it lacks a general union for the private sector. There are strong unions in the public sector but without a general private sector union many workplace problems are going unresolved,” says Mika.

“After the Labour and Employment Relations Act 2013 came into force in 2014 we felt there was a renewed need for a general private sector union to inform and empower workers in Samoa.”

“And now, with the backing of FIRST Union New Zealand and the assistance of Sapolu Law, Samoa First Union will launch in Apia on 29 June 2015,” says Mika.

“The first target for our union organisers will be the major banks and hotels, areas where FIRST Union New Zealand – the retail and finance sector union – has particular expertise.”

“With a growing membership base in New Zealand and now a presence overseas, who says unions are dead?”..


5) Samoa Central Bank freezes another local company’s accounts – money laundering suspected
By Online Editor
11:12 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Samoa

Samoa’s Ministry of Police is currently investigating a case referred to them by the Central Bank of Samoa regarding a local company’s suspected involvement in money laundering.

“This matter is currently under police investigation so we cannot make any comment,” said Gafatasi Patu, Assistant Chief Executive Officer of the Central Bank of Samoa.

Patu said the Central Bank holds a regulatory role in any matter of financial crime or money laundering.

“We work to identify any potential scam or money laundering activity, we then gather relevant information and financial intelligence and then refer to the Ministry of Police and other relevant government agencies for enforcement purposes,” Patu told Talamua.

The local company investigated provides specialized services in the construction industry and was recently established in Samoa.

Police spokesperson Superintendent Su’a Muliaga Tiumalu told Talamua that the case has been referred to the Criminal Investigation Division of the Ministry of Police.

“CID works closely with the Transnational Crime Unit (TCU) when it comes to such cases,” Su’a told Talamua.

He said he cannot comment on the case status at the moment but may provide an update this week if new information is obtained.

The other case Su’a said is currently in the public interest is the one involving the trio accused of an alleged pyramid money making scam.

The trio was scheduled to appear in Court today when the court was to rule on their application for name suppression.

The Central Bank of Samoa also played a pivotal role in freezing the trio’s bank account as the case was referred to the police and the Court.


6) Cook Island Joins ILO

Will lead to immediate benefits for workers

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 22, 2015) – A Cook Islands union leader says the country becoming a member of the International Labour Organisation will lead to immediate benefits for workers.

The Cook Islands became the 186th member of the United Nations body after a vote in Geneva this month.

The Cook Islands Workers Association President, Anthony Turua, says it is a milestone for his people, after the 20 years of campaigning by his association.

Mr Turua has been pushing for a closer look at the minimum wage and he says ILO membership will mean the availability of more resources.

“We could actually request for their assistance to come to the Cook Islands and to give us some sort of advice and guidelines of what is affordable minimum wage here in the Cook Islands and not only just that. Some of the concerns that we have is the health and safety issue. Our legislation is outdate and we need to just rehash that and bring it up to the current standard.”

Radio New Zealand International

7) Samoa Streamlines Court Prosecutions
New body will ensure independence of prosecutions

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 20, 2015) – In Samoa, a single office to handle prosecutions in court is to be established by the end of the year.

Currently prosecutions at the District Court are handled by Police while the Attorney General’s Office is responsible for prosecutions in the Supreme Court.

The new entity will be called the National Prosecution Office, staffed by prosecutors from the Attorney General’s Office and from the Police and headed by the Director of Public Prosecutions.

The Attorney General’s Office says the National Prosecution Office will ensure the independence and transparency of prosecution decisions and procedure.

Legislation needed to establish the prosecution office is to be tabled in Parliament in the near future.

Radio New Zealand International

8) Samoa Trust Declares Highest Ever Dividend
Gov established investment vehicle for Samoans

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 22, 2015) – The Unit Trust of Samoa has declared the highest divident in its five-year history, with unitholders to be paid a share of 985 thousand US dollars in July.

Established by the government in 2010 as a way to provide an investment vehicle for Samoans, the UTOS paid its first dividend of 7 sene to unitholders in 2012, and that value has grown by one sene each year since.

The UTOS says an increasing number of local and overseas based Samoans are investing in the trust, with 1,537 unitholders now registered compared to only 200 when it first started.

Radio New Zealand International


9) Chikungunya cases skyrocket in Marshall Islands
By Online Editor
11:25 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Marshall Islands

The number of confirmed and suspected cases of Chikungunya continues to skyrocket in the Marshall Islands, with over 800 reported by the Ministry of Health as of earlier last week.

The outbreak started in February and has continued unabated, spreading to many remote outer islands. This is the first known outbreak of Chikungunya in the Marshall Islands and follows on the heels of a major outbreak in Kiribati earlier this year.

The mosquito-borne Chikungunya virus has now reached half of the Pacific and is likely to spread to non-affected countries in the region over the next five years, according to the Secretariat of the Pacific Community’s Deputy Director of Public Health Dr. Yvan Souarès earlier this month.

He said five countries are currently experiencing outbreaks, including in addition to the Marshall Islands, the Cook Islands, Kiribati, Samoa and American Samoa.

Three months into the Marshall Islands outbreak, a mosquito-spraying campaign was launched by a multi-agency government group in early May.

Mosquito spraying was effective during a dengue fever outbreak in 2011 in Majuro. The first week of spraying in May targeted about 50 of the over 4,000 homes on Majuro, as well as other key locations around the capital atoll.

Spraying then stopped for several weeks as officials surveyed sites. Spraying resumed on June 1 and continued for two weeks, then was halted two weeks as some of the spray team was involved in a non-related workshop. Spraying was expected to resume this coming week.

In the meantime, Majuro has reported the most cases, with 520 confirmed or suspected cases of Chikungunya. Ebeye Island, the second urban center in the country, reports 63.

The numbers on the outer islands to date are 261, with over half of these from Ailinglaplap. Eight other outer islands report from three to 44 cases.

The illness produces flu-like symptoms, including joint pain, fever, head and muscle aches. It also can cause joint swelling and skin rashes. Most victims of the illness in Majuro report swollen and painful hands, fingers, knees and ankles.


10) Nauru Airlines has announce a weekly service to Tarawa, Majuro, Kosrae and Pohnpei
By Online Editor
11:45 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Australia

The Northern Pacific tourism market is expected to draw more visitors with new air services through Majuro, Pohnpei and Kosrae.

Nauru Airlines CFO, Wendy Bowden, announced in Melbourne that the carrier had started flights through the central Pacific republic to northern destinations.

Operating once a week, Nauru Airlines will fly from its central Pacific base to Tarawa, Majuro, Kosrae and terminate in Pohnpei for an overnight stopover before returning the next day.

Bowden said the service should open up opportunities in the region.

“We expect to carry quite a few business people and there is a lot of travel between the northern Pacific islands,” she said.

“This service also makes it possible for people to attend meetings on time in other countries.”

Nauru Airlines’ new service will allow passengers and freight through Fiji to Kiribati and then on to the Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia

Until recently, travel to the Northern Pacific was possible through Hawaii, Japan or New Zealand.

The situation was forced after Air Marshall Islands stopped its weekly service through Nadi in the late 1990s.

Continental airlines attempted a service through Fiji but this was short-lived.


11) Speed Of Kiribati Cyclone Aid Delivery Questioned

Critics explicitly name government as limiting agent

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 19, 2015) – A Kiribati opposition MP says he is disappointed with the progress of aid delivery and recovery on the islands of Tamana and Arorae which were badly hit by Cyclone Pam in March.

Alexander Teabo has told the Kiribati Independent that the government has not done its part because it failed to declare a state of emergency for these islands.

Mr Teabo says government spent its time campaigning against climate change, but when the two islands were hit, it was not there to give assistance and it wasn’t prepared.

In contrast, he says, the government of Tuvalu declared a state of emergency.

The Vice President, Teima Onorio, earlier told parliament that the government has complied with its policy, assessing and inspecting the damaged areas before aid was sent.

Radio New Zealand International

12) Court delay keeps Nauru opposition MPs in custody until Tuesday
By Online Editor
11:24 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Nauru

Two Nauruan opposition MPs, Squire Jeremiah and former president Sprent Dabwido, are still in police custody after having their bail hearing delayed since Friday, supporters say.

Fellow MP Mathew Batsiua and opposition supporter Lockley Denuga confirm the men are in custody, and a court hearing had been moved to Tuesday at 10:00am.

“It sounds like it was going to be a simple thing, that they just attend court at 8:00am [Saturday] and they’d be bailed out,” Denuga told the ABC.

“It didn’t turn out that way, it took them all day, they just came out at 6:00pm in the evening and it seems like they hadn’t completed anything. So they’ll be taken back to jail.

“Being a Sunday, there won’t be any court, and on Monday there’s going to be a public holiday … so they’ve scheduled for Tuesday morning to continue with their court case.”

Lockley told the ABC on Friday that police arrived at Jeremiah’s house to issue arrest warrants. He said the two MPs went willingly to the police station.

A statement released by the Nauru government’s PR firm on Saturday confirmed reports of some of the arrests, but not those of Jeremiah and  Dabwido.

Repeated requests for information on the latest arrests from the Nauru government have gone unanswered.

Saturday’s statement also restated the government’s issues with foreign media reporting on the situation in Nauru.

“Unfortunately some of these media outlets are giving airtime to opposition MPs even after they engaged in criminal activities, which is shameful,” the statement said.

“Suspended MP Mathew Batsiua was arrested on Tuesday and charged. Claims that he was entrapped into a false meeting with the president are false.

“Batsiua was involved in a riot, had breached parliament and took part in criminal activities.”

The statement also confirmed MP Roland Kun was removed from an outbound flight mid-week, “following a police investigation into his alleged involvement in Tuesday’s riot.”

“Kun was fleeing the scene of a crime before authorities tracked him down and confiscated his passport.”

Kun has denied that he was present, or involved, in the rally — which the government terms a riot.

Protester Lockley Denuga said supporters of Jeremiah and Dabwido were disappointed with the delays in dealing with the bail conditions of the two MPs.

“It was supposed to be just a one or two hour session for just bailing,” he said.

“We’re disappointed but we cannot do anything.”

On Friday, eremiah said people were living in fear in Nauru as the Pacific nation’s government continued a crackdown on dissent.

He said he was expecting to be detained after waking on Friday morning to multiple text messages saying there was a warrant out for his arrest…..PACNEWS


13) CNMI: Free Trade Zone In Northern Islands Is ‘Accomplishable,’

Part of proposed resettlement plan

By Junhan B. Todiño

SAIPAN, CNMI (Marianas Variety, June 22, 2015) – The plan to resettle the Northern Islands and establish a free trade zone there is “accomplishable with adequate financing,” Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang said as he expressed support for Senate Bill 19-29.

The measure is authored by Sen. Sixto K. Igisomar and will mandate cooperation and collaboration between the mayor of the Northern Islands, the Department of Public Works, the Department of Public Lands, the Department of Land and Natural Resources, the Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality and the Commonwealth Ports Authority in identifying free trade zone areas in the Northern Islands.

Apatang said “proper planning must be at the very front of the process.”

“Free trade zones are meant to promote, encourage, and further existing or new infrastructure development and economic activities in areas that do not immediately impact surrounding land uses, and offer tax abatement and reduction of lease rentals as incentives to enterprises for developing in such areas,” he added.

He said the development of the Northern Islands should include “everything that we have learned from the development” of Saipan, Tinian and Rota.

“We should look in hindsight and make sure that the actions of the past that became disadvantageous to both the government and private land owners years later are not repeated in the planning of the Northern Islands.”

A 2000 law created free trade zones in the CNMI.

Apatang said there should be a very comprehensive land-use study to eliminate conflicting land use activity and reserve public lands for development and expansion of public infrastructure.

He said a comprehensive land-use study will be a most valuable guide and will serve as a working tool for planning development in the Northern Islands.

This would save the government and any interested, potential developer the trouble of conducting a piecemeal study and planning on islands with very limited developable land area, he added.

With the comprehensive land-use study, he said the Northern Islands will be easily marketable, especially to developers and investors who must work with schedules and financial resources that produce results at the least cost possible.

Apatang said from a bystander standpoint who believes that the Northern Islands are the last remaining beautiful and untamed possession of the local people, “we wonder why offer free trade zones in the islands.”

“We also wonder what the economic benefits of making free trade zones available in the Northern Islands would be when incentives are available to free-trade-zone licensees that reduce their responsibilities like taxes and land-use payments, especially when we consider that there will be fewer or maybe no other commercial operations in the Northern Islands that will be non-free-trade-zone licensees.”

The remote and sparsely populated Northern Islands include Pagan, an active volcano.

Marianas Variety

14) CNMI Businessman In Laos Bribery Probe
Circumvented taxes and audit

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 22, 2015) – The government of Laos is investigating a businessman from the Northern Marianas John K. Baldwin in an alleged bribery case.

He is the co-owner of Bridge Capital LLC and accused of bribing Lao officials with more than US$300,000 that caused termination of an audit and cost the Lao government 70 million dollars in lost tax revenue over a five-year period.

In addition, court documents state that Laos also produced an email from Mr Baldwin, allegedly instructing his staff to pay 120,000 dollars to a Cambodian official to obtain a Cambodian lottery license.

A lawyer asked the federal court to allow Laos to serve a subpoena pursuant to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption.

Radio New Zealand International


15) Australian Government to remove cap on Seasonal Worker Program for Pacific Island Countries

By Online Editor
11:16 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Australia

The Australian Government has announced the changes in a Commonwealth White Paper on plans to develop northern Australia.

The Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) helps Australian businesses to employ workers from participating Pacific Island Countries (PICs) when they cannot find enough local labour to satisfy seasonal demand.  The Australian Government will expand the SWP to better address seasonal labour shortages in the north.

The White Paper goes on to recommend that, subject to the conclusion of the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations (PACER) Plus regional trade agreement, the Australian Government will invite additional Pacific Island Forum (PIF) countries to participate in the SWP, potentially adding the Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Niue, Palau and the Republic of the Marshall Islands to the programme.

The White Paper also proposes the expansion of the SWP to cover the broader agriculture industry and the accommodation sector on an ongoing basis, and invites northern Australia’s tourism industry to suggest proposals to trial the SWP in tourism sectors other than accommodation.

In recognition of the challenges faced by microstates, the White Paper proposes the establishment of a special multi-year visa to 250 citizens from Kiribati, Nauru and Tuvalu to work in lower skilled occupations in selected industries in Northern Australia.

PACER Plus negotiations were launched by Pacific Leaders in August 2009 in Cairns, Australia, and will result in a trade and development agreement that will inject dynamism into the economies of the PICs and enable them to derive significant benefits from international trade. The negotiations cover a broad range of issues, including regional labour mobility, development and economic cooperation, trade in goods, trade in services and investment.

Regional labour mobility is one of the key issues in the PACER Plus negotiations and the Chief Trade Advisor for the PICs, Dr Edwini Kessie, says he is buoyed by the unveiling of the White Papers which responds positively to the key negotiating demands of the PICs.

“The announcement by the Australian Government is significant as it underscores the importance of increased labour mobility in the Pacific.  The greater access to the Australian labour market by workers from Pacific Island Countries will lead to increased remittances and the upgrading of skills of the  workers who, upon their return, can establish businesses which will generate jobs and contribute to the long-term economic growth and sustainable development of their countries,” Dr Kessie said.

The Parties intend to conclude the PACER Plus negotiations by September 2016.



16) UN Membership Issue Straining NZ And Cooks Relationship
Shared citizenship among arrangements potentially to change

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 22, 2015) – A Cook Islands opposition MP says the government is putting the country’s relationship with New Zealand at risk by pursuing United Nations membership. A statement from a spokesperson for the New Zealand Prime Minister, John Key, says if the Cook Islands wants UN membership, the constitutional relationship, including the current shared citizenship will need to change.

The Cook Islands Foreign Affairs Ministry argues that there is nothing about having your own and separate citizenship in the criteria for joining the UN.

But Murienua MP, James Beer, says it’s very clear that the United Nations charter deals with sovereign countries, and the Cook Islands is not a sovereign country.

“The fear that most Cook Islanders have is that the relationship between the Cook Islands and New Zealand, and having New Zealand citizenship and passports, are extremely relevant to the lifestyles and the peace of mind for all Cook Islanders. And our feeling is that this action, this unilateral action that’s being taken by the Prime Minister, is putting that relationship at risk.”

Radio New Zealand International


17) Ol MSG Memba imas lukluk gut long membaship blong ol

Updated 22 June 2015, 15:57 AEST
Sam Seke

Ol Melanesian kantri imas tingting gut na meksua ol i wokbung na wanbel long husat nau ol i makim long kamap memba blong Melanesian Spearhead Group.

Odio: Niusmeri blong SIBC, Gina Maka’a i toktok wantem Sam Seke
Niusmeri blong SIBC, Gina Maka’a i toktok wantem Sam Seke (Credit: ABC)

Ol Melanesian kantri imas tingting gut na meksua ol i wokbung na wanbel long husat nau ol i makim long kamap memba blong Melanesian Spearhead Group.

Foran Minista blong Solomon Islands, Milner Tozaka i mekim dispela toktok taim em i openim MSG Foreign Ministers Meeting long Honiara dispela morning.

Toktok blong Mr Tozaka i kamap long taim we planti observer i toklukaut long MSG bai ken brukbruk sapos ol lida ino wokbung long isiu blong membership.

Ol MSG foran minista bai holim miting blong ol tede na tumora, pastaim long miting blong ol MSG lida long Trinde na Fonde.

Niusmeri blong SIBC, Gina Maka’a ibin stap tu long opening blong dispela miting blong ol MSG foran minista tede na mi askim em long stori moa.ABC

18) West Papua grup itok oli laikim tru long kamap memba blong MSG

Updated 22 June 2015, 15:47 AEST
Sam Seke

United Liberation Movement for West Papua itok trupla laik blong ol em blong kamp ful memba blong Melanesian Spearhead Group olsem na oli bin aplai long joinim MSG.

Lida blong United Liberation Movement for West Papua, Benny Wenda
Odio: Lida blong United Liberation Movement for West Papua, Benny Wenda i toktok wantem Sam Seke
Lida blong United Liberation Movement for West Papua, Benny Wenda i toktok wantem Sam Seke (Credit: ABC)

United Liberation Movement for West Papua itok ol ibin aplai long kamap ful memba blong Melanesian Spearhead Group, na dispela nau i trutru laik blong ol.

Fiji, PNG na Solomon Islands i laik long Indonesia nau i kamap associate memba, na Solomon Islands i tokaut pinis long givim West Papua Observer Status tasol.

Natuman gavman blong Vanuatu bipo ibin strong long sapotim West Papua, na tu ol FLNKS blong New Caledonia.

Lida blong ULMWP, Benny WendA husat i stap long Honiara wea ol MSG miting i wok long gohet i tok ol i still gat hop long kamap ful memba blong MSG olsem ol i askim.

Mr Wenda i tok ol ULMWP lida long Honiara ibin go givim tu wanpela petisan we moa long 500 tausan pipol blong West Papua yet ibin sainim long sapotim membaship aplikesen blong ol.ABC


19) Brèves du Pacifique – lundi 22 juin 2015

Posté à 22 June 2015, 16:35 AEST
Élodie Largenton

Si les dirigeants des Îles Salomon ont fait savoir qu’ils ne soutiendraient pas les indépendantistes papous, la population a tenu à faire entendre sa voix

Des centaines de personnes se sont rendues à un festival de musique, le week-end dernier, à Honiara, pour promouvoir la cause des Papous vivant en Indonésie. Malgré ce soutien populaire, il semble clair que le Mouvement uni des indépendantistes papous ne deviendra pas membre de plein droit du Groupe mélanésien Fer de lance. Benny Wenda, le porte-parole du mouvement indépendantiste, a indiqué qu’en cas d’échec, il accepterait un statut d’observateur ou de membre associé. La réponse devrait être connue en fin de semaine, à l’issue du sommet de l’organisation, qui se déroule en ce moment dans la capitale salomonaise.

  • À Nauru, deux nouveaux députés de l’opposition ont été arrêtés en fin de semaine dernière. Il s’agit de Squire Jeremiah et de l’ancien president, Sprent Dabwido. Ils sont accusés de chercher à déstabiliser le gouvernement. Tout a commencé mardi dernier, quand des partisans de l’opposition se sont rassemblés devant le Parlement pour manifester contre la suspension de plusieurs députés. Les autorités affirment que dix policiers ont été blessés au cours de la manifestation. En tout, trois élus ont été arrêtés et un autre a vu son passeport être annulé, alors qu’il s’apprêtait à quitter Nauru.
  • La justice des Îles Marshall est la meilleure de la région. C’est de nouveau la République micronésienne qui arrive en tête du classement établi par les responsables du programme de formation juridique du Pacifique. Depuis plusieurs années, ce programme, financé par l’Australie, a pour but de rendre les tribunaux plus accessibles, la justice plus transparente et les juges plus responsables. Palau est l’autre bon élève de la région : le pays a, lui aussi, suivi toutes les recommandations des formateurs australiens, et il prend donc la 2e place du classement.
  • De vieux bus transformés en refuges pour sans-abris : c’est une idée qui fait son chemin à Hawaï. 70 bus retirés de la circulation sont en passe d’être réaménagés par des architectes du Group 70 International pour devenir des dortoirs de huit lits ou des salles de douche. Les premiers abris devraient être prêts d’ici six mois. Hawaï est l’État américain qui compte le plus de SDF, selon les dernières statistiques de 2014.
  • C’est une tradition en Australie : 750 courageux ont pris un bain glacé dans une rivière du sud de la Tasmanie pour célébrer le solstice d’hiver. Il ne faisait qu’un petit degré quand les baigneurs se sont jetés à l’eau, entièrement nus. ABC

 20) Le Vanuatu marque les 100 jours du passage du cyclone Pam

Mis à jour 22 June 2015, 16:55 AEST
Élodie Largenton
Onze personnes tuées, des dizaines d’autres blessées, des infrastructures sévèrement endommagées et des cultures détruites : c’est le bilan du passage du cyclone Pam au Vanuatu, il y a 100 jours. Pour marquer cette date, plusieurs cérémonies ont été organisées hier, dans l’archipel, notamment dans les églises.

Formation de la Croix-Rouge au Vanuatu. (IFRC: Benoit Matsha-Carpentier)
Trois mois après la catastrophe, le pays est toujours en voie de rétablissement. Mais la crise, l’urgence, est passée, il s’agit aujourd’hui de reconstruire.

La population s’est mise au travail dès le lendemain du passage du cyclone de catégorie 5, pour réparer les maisons et s’occuper des jardins. Les habitants ont aussi reçu le soutien de plusieurs organisations humanitaires, dont l’Onu.
Sune Gudnitz est le directeur du bureau du Pacifique chargé  de coordonner les affaires humanitaires. Il dresse un bilan de la situation :

« Je pense que les choses se passent bien, particulièrement concernant le volet humanitaire. Les interventions ont été rapides, ce qui a sûrement permis d’éviter de graves problèmes, notamment dans le domaine médical. Beaucoup a été fait grâce à nos partenaires sur place avec le gouvernement et, bien sûr, les Vanuatais eux-mêmes. »

À plusieurs reprises, le Vanuatu a fait savoir qu’il avait besoin d’aide extérieure. L’impact du cyclone Pam sur l’économie du pays équivaut à une perte de 64% de PIB, estiment les autorités. Il faudrait, en effet, que la communauté internationale soit un peu plus généreuse, estime Sune Gudnitz :

« On n’a réuni que 50% de la somme nécessaire pour la mise en œuvre de notre plan d’action humanitaire. Si vous comparez à d’autres catastrophes dans le monde, ce chiffre n’est pas si mauvais que cela, mais ça veut dire qu’on doit quand même réunir plus de dons. »

Pour comparaison, l’aide humanitaire jugée nécessaire au Népal après le tremblement de terre n’est financée qu’à hauteur de 31%, pour le moment, fait savoir l’Onu.ABC

21) New ICT report points to future development

Updated at 1:56 pm today

An Information Communications Technology expert says he hopes a new report will trigger greater access and connectivity across the Pacific.

The Pacific Region Infrastructure Facility report highlights the improved access to infrastructure and services across the Pacific and looks at the potential for greater ICT development.

Hopes are high for greater connectivity in Pacific

The Facility director, Sanjivi Ransingham, says the report will help Pacific governments and the private sector identify opportunities for investment.

Mr Ransingham says the report illustrated the major changes in the region with under half of Pacific households having access to mobile phones in 2007 to 93 percent in 2014 being an example.

He says the report also included some necessary recommendations.

“Do data collection and monitoring of the sector. Leveraging international connectivity. Fostering relearning and educational content creation. Holding ICT-enabled agricultural services. Stimulating e-Health, health services that can be provided through the internet and then e-Government, boosting tourism and finally and most importantly making ICT access universal.”

22) Pacific Forum ready to help if Nauru asks
By Online Editor
11:28 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Nauru

The Pacific Islands Forum’s Secretariat says it is ready to assist Nauru if the government seeks help amid an on-going political crisis there.

Protests this week have seen MPs and others arrested, the government calling out riot police and seeking help from the security teams at the Australian-run detention camps.

Protestors have threatened to shut access to the hotel used by the hundreds of Australians staffing the camps.

The Australian government, which has poured millions of dollars into Nauru as part of its policy to process asylum seekers abroad, has not commented on the crisis.

New Zealand is also providing aid to the Nauru government, particularly to the law and justice sector, but the Foreign Minister Murray McCully has not had any comment on the latest developments.

The Forum Secretariat says the issues are primarily for Nauru to settle and resolve.

It says it is in contact with the Nauru government and is ready to help if asked.



23) EU tax haven list labelled arbitrary and poorly constructed

By Online Editor
11:21 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Australia

An academic who specialises in tax havens says a blacklist released by the European Commission is arbitrary and poorly constructed.

The list of 30 international tax havens was released last week, as part of an EU effort to crack down on multinational companies trying to avoid paying tax in the EU.

The list of non-EU countries includes five in the Pacific: Niue, Nauru, the Marshall Islands, the Cook Islands and Vanuatu.

But Anthony van Fossen, an adjunct research fellow at Australia’s Griffith University, says the list seems to be picking on smaller, easy-to-target tax havens and ignoring major ones like Singapore, Switzerland and Luxembourg.

“The list is very strange in that some major havens are ignored, particularly the havens in the European Union itself, and many minor havens, including some in the Pacific Islands are highlighted.”

Anthony van Fossen says being on the list could affect the countries’ abilities to do business.



24) Bougainville To Have Economic Development Ministry
To be included in new cabinet, revenue key to autonomy

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 22, 2015) – The Bougainville President John Momis, re-elected in a landslide last month, is expected to name his new cabinet today and it will include a new economic services ministry.

The new parliament will be required to prepare the autonomous Papua New Guinea region for a vote on possible independence, to be held before 2020.

Mr Momis says a critical element of this process is to ensure the region’s economy becomes viable and this has prompted the new portfolio.

“We want to put a lot of emphasis on the responsibility of the autonomous government to raise revenue and I think one of the best ways of doing that would be to have a ministry wholly and solely responsible for economic generation of revenue for economic development.”

Radio New Zealand International


25) Quartet to be sentenced on Wednesday in Fiji’s multi-million dollar road scam
By Online Editor
11:10 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Fiji

The four accused persons in a multi-million dollar road scam were today found guilty by Fiji’s High Court Judge Justice Paul Madigan and will be sentenced on Wednesday.

Justice Madigan today concurred with the assessors who on Friday found the four- a businessman and three former civil servants guilty of trying to circumvent procedures to obtain over $3 million (US$1.4 million) for a road works project in the Nausori Highlands.

The four assessors found Ba businessman Feroz Jan Mohammed, Iliesa Turagacati and Navitalai Tamanitoakula guilty of Bribery, Obtaining a Financial Advantage and Abuse of Office while Aisea Liwaiono, a former Roads Supervisor of the Department of National Roads was found guilty of Causing a Loss.

Mohammed and his company allegedly obtained a financial advantage amounting to more than $3 million by receiving money the company was not entitled to, upon submitting false invoices and circumventing the proper procedures concerning the processing of payments with the influence of Turagacati.

Tamanitoakula allegedly processed payments amounting to more than $2 million (US$1 million) made to TF Jan Bulldozing Company Limited without following proper procedures. The men were charged by Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC). They have been remanded in custody.



26) Question Over Promotion Of Indonesia Within MSG
MP: implicit opposition to West Papua not supported by public

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 20, 2015) – The Australian Greens Party says it’s concerned at reports that Australia is offering to change official travel warnings to Iran so it can deport Iranians who have failed to be granted asylum.

Almost 300 Iranian asylum seekers are detained on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea and 166 on Nauru as part of Australia’s policy to process applicants abroad.

Australian media reports say a high-level delegation visited Australia this week to draw up a memorandum of understanding to allow for the return of the Iranians held in detention camps.

In a statement, the party’s immigration spokesperson, Sarah Hanson-Young says it seems the government is prepared to bribe anyone and everyone to get rid of asylum-seekers wherever possible.

She says cutting a deal with Iran in exchange for downgrading an official travel warning for Australian tourists is extraordinary, and that the government needs to be upfront with what the terms of deal are and what safeguards will be put in place.

Radio New Zealand International


27) Solomons Watchdog Calls For Removal Of Forestry Minister
Reportedly granted exemptions to family business

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 22, 2015) – A Solomon Islands corruption watchdog wants the Forestry Minister Bodo Dettke removed after allegations he granted exemptions to a family-owned logging company.

Transparency Solomon Islands says Mr Dettke granted an Agro Forestry Exemption in April to Solomon Resources Management Ltd for land on Mono in the Shortland Islands.

The exemption allows the company to clear the land for use as coconut and betelnut plantations effectively bypassing the need for a logging licence.

A TSI official Edward Ronia, says Mr Dettke had been the company’s Director since 1996 and only sold the shares to his sister in January this year.

Mr Ronia says this is what TSI has feared since Mr Dettke’s appointment as Forestry Minister in December last year.

“It is a serious area and the government should heed, I mean because we are close to the people we know the people we understand the situation. And when we raise issues like that and it is ignored and in the end the results show what we are concerned about we think the government should be giving a more listening ear to people who know what is happening on the ground.”

Transparency Solomon Islands’ Edward Ronia.

Radio New Zealand International

28) Review states deficiencies in National Fisheries Agency

By Online Editor
11:30 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

Deficiencies in planning, implementation, training and resources exist in the Papua New Guinea National Fisheries Agency, according to a recent review.

The review was done into the operations of NFA’s monitoring, control and surveillance (MCS) compliance unit.

NFA executive manager of the MSC unit Gisa Komangin said efforts were underway for a high level of compliance in all fisheries, particularly the tuna purse seine fishery.

He said that considering illegal, unreported and unregulated activities, the NFA has programs and action plans in place to support improvements however, significant planning and reporting processes need to be developed to achieve these targets.

He said the MCS compliance unit has additional fisheries compliance responsibilities which the review identified and recommended, among others, the realignment of the management structure, recruitment of staff and the definition of duties.

“The restructuring of the compliance unit entailed the recruitment of a manager (compliance operations) who will oversee the operations of two responsive enforcement units that will be capable of investigating all violations of PNG’s fisheries legislation and will oversee management plans,” Komangin said.

He said two assistant managers were also recruited; one responsible for tuna fishery compliance and the other responsible for coastal fisheries compliance overseeing all coastal domestic fisheries.

He said there was a need to refocus our priorities in light of the European Union report.

“I am delighted that the revitalised compliance unit has created opportunities for a number of existing staff members to gain promotion.

“I believe there is a huge opportunity for us to really accelerate the growth of our PNGs fishing industry. I am sure the Compliance Unit will be a major player in this process.”

To support the training initiatives, mentoring of key leaders is also imperative to ensure knowledge and skills obtained are utilised appropriately, he said.

He said that the review was followed by a two-week training for the newly recruited compliance officers, on June 8-19, on basics covering area of time management, effective communication, introduction to compliance, writing descriptive statements, reports and public speaking.

“We see this as the foundation, the must acquire basic knowledge a compliance officer should have in the work place,” Komangin said.


29) Eastern high seas fishing raising red flags

By Online Editor
11:35 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Marshall Islands

While tuna fishing inside the zones of Parties to the Nauru Agreement or PNA members has remained largely unchanged the past four years, a spike in bigeye tuna catches in a high seas area near Kiribati and the Marshall Islands is raising red flags.

Reports are coming in of “a dramatic increase in bycatch of bigeye tuna,” said Dr Transform Aqorau, CEO of PNA.

“It’s a serious issue.”

The central Pacific sees a larger bigeye tuna bycatch by purse seiners that target skipjack tuna, and reports from industry indicate that bigeye landings in Thailand have increased four-fold over the past two years. With bigeye already under stress from being over-fished, rising catches in this area are a critical issue of concern, Aqorau said.

Several years ago, as a conservation measure, PNA closed two high seas “pockets” to fishing as a condition of license to fish in PNA zones. Dr Aqorau said this eastern high seas area needs either a “hard” catch limit or to be closed to fishing as a condition of licensing in PNA waters.

He pointed out that catches in PNA zones have remained stable over the past four years because PNA enforces limits. But this is not the case in the eastern high seas, which sees growing catch volumes. “The PNA region suffers because of high seas issues,” he said.

Not surprisingly, the fishing industry is less than enthusiastic about the possibility of an eastern high seas closure. “If the high seas are closed, the boats will have to buy fishing days (from PNA members),” said Tri-Marine Chief Operating Officer Joe Hamby in late April. “Closing the high seas is therefore not a conservation measure but a means to increase demand for (PNA fishing) days.”

American Tunaboat Association Executive Director Hallman said high seas closure in the eastern Pacific would have a “very negative impact” on the U.S. fleet. “The eastern high seas area is even more important to U.S. vessels since we have been largely excluded in 2015 from the waters of Kiribati, which are nearby,” Hallman said.

Last year, scientists advised the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission that bigeye tuna stocks had declined to under 20 percent of their original biomass and were being over-fished. Despite this information, the commission has been unable to get agreement from its members — both Pacific island nations and distant water fishing countries — to make significant cutbacks in bigeye effort on the high seas, particularly related to longline fleets.

In light of the increasing tonnage of bigeye caught in the eastern high seas, PNA officials say a closure would help reduce pressure on the stock as well as reduce the current over-supply of skipjack that has seen prices plummet from US$2,300 per ton two years ago to about US$1,150 today.



30) PNG Defence Commander launches Pacific Wantok force, Tight security for Games
By Online Editor
00:07 am GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

Defence Force commander Gilbert Toropo haslaunched Operation Pacific Wantok, the joint taskforce for the Pacific Games in two weeks time, in a parade last Friday.

Brigadier-General Toropo said 300 soldiers have been called out by Police Commissioner Gari Baki as special constables to assist in security during the Games. The special constables can be identified wearing a red band on their right arm over their PNGDF uniforms.

Brig-Gen Toropo said the Defence Force preparations began two years ago with bilateral training and exercises with Australia and New Zealand defence forces for the Pacific Games as well as the 2018 APEC Leaders Summit.

“These are some members who have gone through proper comprehensive preparations and training to support the security of the Pacific Games,” he said at the parade.

The Pacific Wantok taskforce will consist of personnel from headquarters, two ready reaction forces, static presence in all events and accommodation venues and other assets like helicopters and LCH.

Brig-Gen Toropo said the government and other various stakeholders had put in a lot of effort for the Games success therefore he expected nothing less than the best from his 300 personnel and professional conduct throughout the entire period. “How you display yourself will leave a lasting impression of our PNGDF both in country and abroad,” he told them.

The Royal PNG Constabulary is the lead agency in the security of the Games and the PNGDF and Correctional Services will complement through the callout.

“I can speak for all the heads of the three disciplinary forces that our men and women are adequately prepared and ready to deliver the security outcomes that our people and the Government want us to provide,” Brig-Gen Toropo assured.

Present at the launch of Operation Pacific Wantok were representatives of the other two force in a show of solidarity.

Meanwhile, all Government agencies will assist Foreign Affairs and Immigration to make sure the Pacific Islanders are facilitated smoothly into Papua New Guinea at the airport, with accommodation and at venues.

Acting Chief Secretary John Kali said that all agencies are prepared for this, apart from the security operations that will be implemented during July 4-25.

About 5000 visitors from abroad are expected for the Pacific Games which kick off on July 4 in Port Moresby.

“We also have other Government agencies Immigration, Foreign Affairs and others to make sure they work together in ensuring that the entry into the country of our visitors are facilitated smoothly right through their accommodation and venues, also thoroughly and free of any mishap,” Mr Kali said.

This is all part of the entire security operation which is codenamed “Safe Games” which will take into account potential threats, both external and within.

Police Commissioner Gari Baki announced about security 2700 personnel, including the police (1200), PNGDF (300) and Correctional Services (300) will be deployed during the Games.

About 600 police personnel – 30 from every province – being flown into Port Moresby to support the NCD police for the operations.

Members of the Police special force unit (SSD) have been undergoing special training in terrorism and kidnapping countermeasures at the McGregor Barracks recently, and are ready to be deployed.

Baki said that surveillance drones, or balloons will also be launched as part of the “eye in the sky” operation, while ground monitors will ensure nothing escapes the eye of the forces.

The security contingent is being trained to protect vital assets to ensure there are no threats to essential services like water and electricity. They are also trained to protect Games officials and participants, and to respond quickly to any threats at the Games venues, residence, or in transit.

“From the briefing I have received we should not be too worried about that (terrorism). But we are ready to respond to it. We are going to provide, as much as possible, a secure environment so you can enjoy the games. As an individual, you do your part as well,” Baki said.

The Transport Department will also deploy 300 personnel to control traffic and ensure there was free flow of traffic to Games venues.


31) We are ready, Sporting facilities ready for games: Sports and Pacific Games Minister Justin Tkatchenko
By Online Editor
00:09 am GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

The main Sir John Guise Stadium and Taurama Aquatic and Indoor Centre have been given the thumbs up for the Pacific Games in two weeks.

Games organisers have tested these two major sporting facilities and are pleased with the results.

Sports and Pacific Games Minister Justin Tkatchenko announced during a media conference Sunday at the Taurama Aquatic and Indoor Centre that most of the facilities are almost completed. The Sir John Guise Stadium was the first to be tested when it hosted the SP Hunters versus the Magpies rugby league match the previous weekend.

“Let me be precise and clear the air for people having doubts about the facilities that almost 95 per cent of the jobs have been completed and the contractors are working on the finishing touches,” Mr Tkatchenko said.

“We never had such world-class facilities and everybody is proud and we are ready for all the Pacific Islands.

“It will be an opportunity to watch four to five sports play at the same time at one particular place,” the MP said.

“The swimming pool is of a world-class standard and can be used for any international events in the future,”

“The indoor facilities will cater for basketball, volleyball, Taekwondo and karate. It will be an opportunity to watch four to five sports play at the same time at one particular place,”

“All the other facilities for soccer, bowling, rugby, cricket and softball, and Sir Hubert Murray Stadium at Konedobu, will be tested over the next two weeks to ensure that everything is on track,” Mr Tkatchenko confirmed that the stadium at Konedobu will play host to the women’s triathlon medal presentation ceremony by Prince Andrew on Sunday morning, July 5, and it will also be used for the soccer competition on July 9.

Tkatchenko thanked the Games organising committee, Game venue management team and PNG Sports Foundation for producing international class facilities in two years.

He also acknowledged the knighting of Sir Kostas Constantino who is the Games organising committee chairman for services to sports.


32) Guam looks to win gold in Games

By Online Editor
00:00 am GMT+12, 22/06/2015, Guam

Participating in 12 sports, Guam will be sending over 200 athletes and officials to the 2015 Pacific Games.

Chef De Mission Joey Miranda III said that this year would see the country perform better than the two previous Games.

“We expect our athletes to compete at a high level and to give it their all. We are going to contend for all possible medals.”

Guam is ready to face regional powerhouses and previous medal top four finishers New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Fiji.

In contention for that gold medal are the men’s and women’s basketball who won medals in 2014 Micronesian games in Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia.

The men’s team who finished second at the last two games will be working hard for that elusive gold medal.

The Guam swimming team will be looking at bringing home medals after entering more swim events then other sports.

The sports Guam will be participating in are: Basketball (men and women), beach volleyball (Men and women), boxing (men and women), golf (men and women), rugby 9s (men), Shooting (men and women), swimming (men and women), taekwondo (men and women), tennis (men and women), track and field , triathlon (men and women), va’a (men and women), volleyball (men and women), and weightlifting (men and women).


33) Pacifc Games Basketball draws out

By Online Editor
11:59 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, Papua New Guinea

The 2015 Pacific Games basketball draws is out.

Papua New Guinea men’s team is in pool B with Fiji, New Caledonia, Nauru, and American Samoa while in pool A Kiribati, Samoa, Guam, Tahiti and Solomon Islands make up the rest of the teams participating in the men’s basketball competition.

The women’s team are in pool A with Tahiti, Guam and Nauru, while pool B see’s American Samoa, Solomon Islands, Fiji and New Caledonia together.

PNG Basketball Federation president Nick Daroa said the draw for Team PNG has PNG against some of the best teams, but said in the event that the round robin competition does a crossover PNG should be looking at the facing teams they have defeated in the past.

“The women’s quest for gold begins with a baptism of fire against Tahiti who they haven’t faced since 2013’s Pacific Open Championships in Wellington, New Zealand.”

“It will be a tough game and I expect the new members of the team to be challenged by their opponent, while for the men’s team they are expected to face a tougher challenge from New Caledonia, Fiji and American Samoa should they face off in the crossover,” Daroa said.

The competition will kick off on Friday July 3 at 1pm and will end with the gold medal play off for the men’s on Sunday July 12 at 3pm.

All basketball competitions will be held at the Taurama Aquatic Centre Courts –BSP Arena while the Semi finals and finals will be held at the Sir John Guise Indoor Stadium –PNG Power Dome.


34) Waisake Naholo, Lima Sopoaga emotions run high after All Blacks selection

By Online Editor
11:57 pm GMT+12, 21/06/2015, New Zealand

Waisake Naholo had to fight back the tears when telling family in Fiji he had been selected for the All Blacks.

Naholo, who says he has left his agent to negotiate his release from the two-year deal he signed with French club Clermont before the Super Rugby season began, had everything to celebrate at the weekend.

Less than 24 hours after scoring two tries in the Highlanders’ 24-14 win over the Chiefs in their Super Rugby quarterfinal in Dunedin, Naholo discovered his move to the Highlanders from the Blues had paid another massive dividend.

The wing didn’t tune in for the announcement of the All Blacks squad, instead hearing about his inclusion when friends bombarded him with texts.

Then came the moment when he dialled through to his parents’ house in Sigatoka, Fiji.

“They were the first people I talked to after I heard the news – I think mum had some tears there.

“Even I was struggling a little bit to tell them because I struggled to believe it. I don’t know how to describe it.”

Since it was revealed New Zealand Rugby had contacted Naholo and encouraged him to stay in the country – a reaction to his electric performances for the Highlanders – it was expected he would be included in the All Blacks squad for the first time.

“I had heard and seen all that stuff on social media, but I didn’t really believe it,” Naholo said.

“I couldn’t believe I would make the All Blacks.”

Naholo set a season-high record of 11 tries for the franchise with his double at Forsyth Barr Stadium. Afterwards his coach Jamie Joseph said the flying Fijian was going nowhere, even though the exact details of what is involved in getting him a release from Clermont are not clear.

“I just let my agent take care of it,” Naholo stated.

Unwanted by Blues coach John Kirwan after the 2013 season, Naholo, who was born in Sigatoka and later moved to Wanganui City College, decided his future lay overseas.

His efforts under Joseph changed that and he is now one of the hottest tickets in the country.

“When I was at the Blues I didn’t get that much of a chance … That was one of the reasons why I decided to go to France. Everyone who plays in New Zealand wants to make the All Blacks, but at that time I didn’t think I would make it.”

Meanwhile, first five-eighth Lima Sopoaga thanked Joseph for keeping faith in him because he believed he was “on his last legs” with the Highlanders until his luck changed.

In my first three seasons we were pretty up and down and he [Joseph] he hadn’t really got much out of me and I was off contract in 2014,” Sopoaga told NewstalkZB.

“If I didn’t have a big campaign I was going to have to look elsewhere. Probably go to a new franchise or look overseas.”

This year Sopoaga, no doubt encouraged by a dominant forward pack and the little wizard Aaron Smith at halfback, has been a standout; his goal kicking percentages have been encouraging, his defence has been reliable and he can run the backline with authority.

“I guess I owe a lot to the coaching staff and the faith they have shown in me.”…..PACNEWS



Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1105 ( Monday 15 June 2015 )


1) Vanuatu has tiny version of Great Wall

15 JUNE 2015 

 A Vanuatu businessman, Hudson Tombo, in Torba Province, has built what he calls the ‘Midget Great Wall of China.’

The wall climbs nearly 200 metres to the summit of a forest covered hill.

Mr Tombo who lives at the foot of the hill says he hired 18 young men who used hand tools to achieve the feat within 28 days.

He says he was inspired after being impressed by the Great Wall of China during a trip to China to study melon growing.

Mr Tombo is planning a restaurant, a bakery and other business activities at the summit, which overlooks Sola Bay.

He already has a sizable farm at the site which supplies vegetables to a nearby school.RNZI


2) Samoa PM wants street vendors taught a lesson

15 JUNE 2015 

Samoa’s Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, says he has had a change of heart about allowing vendors to sell their products along the streets of Apia.

The Samoa Obsever reported the prime minister saying giving them a chance was a mistake made out of love that has now backfired, with vendors telling police who confront them that Tuilaepa said it was okay.

Tuilaepa says the orginal grace period for vendors to sell on the streets was given while the Fugalei market was being constructed but is reportedly saying now that it is finished, this no longer applies.

The paper reports Tuilaepa is now calling on police to arrest illegal vendors to teach them a lesson.RNZI

3) More Tech-Savvy Young To Be Employed In American Samoa

India-based company plans business processing operation

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 12, 2015) – The Chamber of Commerce in American Samoa says it’s excited by plans that could see more young, educated and technologically-savvy people employed in the territory.

An India-based company, Datamatics, plans to set up a business processing outsource operation in partnership with a local company, Aviana Technologies.

Banks, medical and insurance companies outsource some, if not all, of their back-office processes like account receivables, billing, and insurance and credit card verification.

The planned operation would process information and data that is required to remain in the United States, and processed only by US citizens.

The Chamber’s chairman, David Robinson, says these are the types of jobs that American Samoa needs.

“I think the focus has always been looking at manufacturing, and processing and things like that. Well, it’s not really appropriate here. We’ve got a lot of young, well educated, technically savvy people, and we should be looking at technology related new projects and investments, and this really fits the bill.”

The chairman of American Samoa’s Chamber of Commerce, David Robinson.

Radio New Zealand International 

4) Tongans Given Deadline For Land Issues Stalling Rebuild
Post-cyclone recovery behind schedule

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 15, 2015) – Authorities in the Tongan islands of Ha’apai have given residents two weeks to finalise land issues that have stalled the rebuilding of homes damaged by Cyclone Ian in January 2014.

Last week the Governor of Ha’apai, Mo’ale Finau, met with World Bank officials to discuss the progress of the project, to which the bank granted over 13 million US dollars.

But only half of the more than 500 houses needed have been built, despite plans to be finished by the end of July.

Mr Finau says issues around land ownership have proved difficult to negotiate.

He says the two-week deadline is necessary.

“After two weeks, for those who still haven’t got consent there is no choice. The World Bank and the government will go back and build exactly where the house was destroyed and then perhaps the victim and the land-holder will sort it out later. We don’t have any other option. This is the only way we can finish this project.”

The Governor of Ha’apai, Mo’ale Finau.

Radio New Zealand International 

5) Large Reef Damaged By FAD In American Samoa
Fish aggregating device became stuck on live reef

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 12, 2015) – About 120 square feet of coral in American Samoa has been destroyed after a floating fish aggregation device became stuck to a reef.

The Department of Marine And Wildlife Resources and staff from the Coral Reef Advisory Group extracted a floating FAD that was found on the reef in Fagaalu.

The Department’s fish biologist Alice Lawrence says the FAD became attached to very fine and fragile branching coral.

“When we actually removed it, there’s quite a large area of dead coral underneath, we estimate around 120 square feet. The surrounding area was also damaged by little pieces of rope and material. This is kind of a problem especially in Fagaalu, where the reef is actually quite healthy. There’s a lot of fish, and people go fishing there, it’s damaged quite a big area. There’s less habita there for the fish and other marine creatures.”

Alice Lawrence says even out at sea FADS can be a threat to marine life.

Radio New Zealand International 


6) Disgraced former CNMI governor wants to stay out of jail

15 JUNE 2015

 The disgraced former governor of the Northern Marianas, Benigno Fitial, has begged the court not to jail him, following his guilty verdict for misconduct in public office and conspiracy to commit theft.

Through his lawyer, Fitial has asked if a prison term is given, that it be suspended entirely, on the condition that he pay an appropriate fine, and any restitution for loss to the government which might be proven.

However, the Office of the Public Auditor is recommending a sentence of five years’ jail, with a two years non parole period, a fine of $US5,000 dollars and a 10-year ban on employment in the government.

The Chief Prosecutor, Leonardo Rapadas, has recommended a sentence of more than a year in prison.

Fitial pleaded guilty to the charges in May after resigning as governor in February 2013, days after the House of Representatives had impeached him.

The sentencing hearing is next week.RNZI

7) CNMI utility welcomes casino’s power use

15 JUNE 2015

 The entry of a new casino to the Northern Marianas power grid has been a welcome development for the islands’ struggling utilities company.

Best Sunshine International Ltd’s Grand Mariana Casino and Hotel Resort will increase power use by nine megawatts.

The Commonwealth Utilities Corporation’s Executive Director, Alan Fletcher, says the proposed 14-story casino hotel in Garapan will help lower power costs.

Over the last 10 years, with the demise of the garment industry and the fall in population, the utility has lost half of its sales in kilowatt-hour terms, meaning a lower base to pay for a system that used to accommodate a base twice the size.RNZI

8) Palau burns illegal fishing vessels

15 June 2015 

Palau has begun following Indonesia’s example by burning foreign vessels caught illegally fishing in their waters.

National Geographic reports that in recent weeks, Palau law enforcement officers have caught and burned a cluster of Vietnamese fishing boats.

The ships’ captains remain incarcerated in Palau while the 77 crew members are being sent home on two remaining fishing boats, with enough food and fuel to make it back to Vietnam.

Palau’s president, Tommy Remengesau, said that his government hopes to send a clear message to poachers who are raping Palau’s marine environment

The message is that Palau will not tolerate any more unsustainable acts and that illegal fishers will return home with nothing.

Palau authorities found over eight metric tons of sea cucumbers and reef fish on board the latest boats found fishing in Palau without permission.

These vessels join 15 other boats from Vietnam which have been caught by Palau since 2014, with a haul of over 25 metric tons of fish destined for the black market in Asia.

Palau’s policy comes after Indonesia last year rejuvenated its policy of sinking foreign vessels found to be fishing illegally in its waters – Vietnamese flagged boats have featured frequently.RNZI


9) Pac Islanders Have Slim Chance In NZ Immigration Lottery
Adviser: new category needed for those already working in NZ

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 15, 2015) – An immigration adviser says the chance of getting a place in New Zealand’s immigration ballot for Pacific Islanders is so slim that a new category should be created for islanders already working in the country.

Almost 9,000 Fijians applied for one of only 250 places drawn in the Pacific Access Category ballot to gain residence in New Zealand, for the first time since the military coup of 2006.

Atesh Narayan, of Auckland South Immigration Consultants, says some people have been complaining it is a money-making scheme, with little chance of a return for prospective immigrants.

He says many applicants will not reach the job, language and health requirements to gain residence and their places are not passed onto people who missed out in the ballot.

“If a person does not get a job offer within the eight months period, then he just misses his place and those people who miss out will have to pay $30 and do it again next year.”

Atesh Narayan says a specific number of the places should go to New Zealand-based Fijians who already have good skills, jobs and are well-settled.

Radio New Zealand International 


10) Mosen blong no-konfidans long niupela Kilman gavman long Vanuatu

Updated 15 June 2015, 14:16 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Oposisan long Vanuatu i muvim pinis wanpela mosen blong no-konfisans agensim niupela gavman blong Praim Minista Sato Kilman.

Vanuatu praim minista Sato Kilman i fesim mosen blong no-konfidens 
Niupela gavman blong Praim Minista Sato Kilman long Vanuatu we palamen ibin makim long Fonde last wik, bai fesim wanpela no- konfidans mosen long Fonde long despla wik.
Praim Minista Kilman ibin kisim despla wok bihaenim Vote of No Confidence em ol oposisan ibin mekim agensim gavman blong Joe Natuman.
Nau oposisan lida, Joe Natuman ibin givim notis long Speaker long Friday long bai em i muvim mosen blong nogat-bilip long niupela gavman.
Wanpela long ol as long Mr Kilman ibin rausim gavman em long ol tokwin gavman ino bin dilim gut ol halvim bihaen long saiklon Pam ibin hamarim kantri long mun March.
Tasol sampla stori i sutim tok long sampla memba blong nupla gavman long stap insaet long sampla bribery pasin oa oli kisim gris moni, olsem na oli laik senisim gavman.ABC

11) Niupela gavman long Bougainville i kisim ofis tede

Postim 15 June 2015, 16:03 AEST
Caroline Tiriman

Niupela Autonomous Bougainville Gavman long Bougainville i kisim kisim ofis tede long wanbele seremoni long gavman hedkwata long Buka. 

Odio: President John Momis blong Bougainville i toktok
Despla emi namba tri Haus Palaman blong Bougainville na emi namba tu taem blong John Momis blong holim wok olsem President.
Dr Momis i kisim bek dispela wok bihain long em bin kisim samting olsem 30 tausan ol votes winim ol narapla candidate em oli bin resis egensim em long despla wok long ol ileksan sampela wik igo.
Planti tausan pipal blong olgeta hap blong Bougainville ibin stap long despla seremoni long Buka we i lukim ol i makim tu Simon Pentanu olsem Speaker na deputi speaker em Francesca Semoso, meri memba blong North Bougainville.
Na bihaen long seremoni long palaman, President Momis ibin givim sampela toktok long pol pipol long tingting na plan blong niupela gavman blongen.ABC

12) PNG Hunters i win long Pacific Games stadium long Moresby

Updated 15 June 2015, 15:46 AEST
Sam Seke

Papua New Guinea ibin hamamas tru long sait long sport long kantri long last wiken bihainim win blong ol PNG Hunters long Sir John Guise Stadium long Port Moresby we ol i nau redim gut blong hostim Pacific Games..

Pride blong PNG rugby league, The Hunters ibin mekim record 7 win blongen long Queensland Cup long frant blong capacity crowd blong 15 tausan long Sir John Guise Stadium we ol i nau kolim BSP Pacific Games Stadium long Port Moresby long Sarere.
Dispela i nabawan taim ol Hunters i plei long stadium ol i kolim tu long John Guise Stadium we ol i mekim gutpela moa blong hostim 2015 Pacific Games we bai stat long tupela wik bihain.
PNG Hunters Media Manager, Martin Liri i tok niupela stadium na gutpela bihevia blong ol spekteta i soim trutru olsem PNG i redi long welkamim ol tim blong olgeta kantri long Pacific.
Martin i tok  34-12 win blong PNG Hunters agensim South Logan Magpies i nau putim ol long naba 4 long Queensland Cup.ABC


13) Brèves du Pacifique – lundi 15 juin 2015

Mis à jour 15 June 2015, 16:31 AEST
Élodie Largenton

Il y a trop de motions de censure au Vanuatu, estime le nouveau chef de l’opposition, Edward Natapei… qui vient de déposer une motion de censure.

Cette énième motion doit être soumise au Parlement cette semaine, et si Edward Natapei parvient à renverser le nouveau Premier ministre, Sato Kilman, il compte organiser un référendum pour changer la constitution : « On doit s’assoir à une table et ajouter un paragraphe à la constitution instaurant un recours limité aux motions de censure pour assurer la stabilité du gouvernement et du pays », plaide-t-il au micro de la radio néo-zélandaise. Il y a eu neuf changements de gouvernement en l’espace de cinq ans au Vanuatu.

  • Un réfugié se cache sur l’île de Manus, en Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée, après avoir été vraisemblablement utilisé pour faire la promotion du gouvernement. Haider Khan s’est vu offrir un séjour dans la capitale, Port-Moresby, ainsi qu’un peu d’argent pour acheter de la nourriture et des vêtements. En échange, les autorités l’ont photographié avec une pancarte disant « merci de nous aider ». Selon son témoignage, recueilli par ABC, Haider Khan a demandé à ce que la photo ne soit pas diffusée. Or, elle figure dans une publicité diffusée dans la presse pour promouvoir le programme de réinstallation des réfugiés. Haider Khan a reçu des menaces de mort de la part d’autres réfugiés et demandeurs d’asile. Le réfugié bangladais a dû quitter son logement par mesure de sécurité et vit désormais dans la rue, selon ses propos.
  • Palau envoie un message clair aux braconniers : la République micronésienne a mis le feu à quatre bateaux vietnamiens surpris en train de pêcher illégalement dans des eaux protégées. Les 77 membres d’équipage ont été renvoyés au Vietnam sur deux autres bateaux de pêche. « Les capitaines seront poursuivis et emprisonnés, les bateaux seront brûlés. Vous ne gagnerez rien en braconnant dans nos eaux. Passez-vous le message entre pêcheurs, vous devez respecter Palau », a déclaré le président du pays, Tommy Remengesau Jr. Depuis l’année dernière, 15 bateaux vietnamiens ont été arrêtés avec plus de 25 tonnes de poissons destinés au marché noir asiatique.
  • Aux Îles Tonga, les autorités imposent un ultimatum aux habitants de Ha’apai : ils doivent s’entendre sur la répartition des terres d’ici deux semaines. De nombreuses familles vivent actuellement sur des terrains qui appartiennent en fait à des Tongiens basés à l’étranger, et ces conflits fonciers empêchent la reconstruction des maisons détruites par le cyclone Ian, il y a déjà un an et demi. Pourtant, l’argent est là, la Banque mondiale subventionne le projet de reconstruction à hauteur de 17 millions de dollars. Si les gens n’arrivent pas à se mettre d’accord, « nous reconstruirons les maisons exactement aux mêmes endroits qu’avant et peut-être que là, les victimes du cyclone et les propriétaires parviendront à s’entendre. On n’a pas le choix, c’est la seule manière de mener ce projet à terme », explique le gouverneur de Ha’apai, Mo’ale Finau.
  • Nouvelle aide du Japon aux Îles Tonga : le port Faua de la capitale Nuku’alofa va être modernisé et agrandi grâce à une subvention de 33 millions de dollars du gouvernement japonais. Les travaux devraient être finis en 2018, à temps donc, pour les Jeux du Pacifique, qui se dérouleront dans le royaume polynésien en 2019.ABC

14) Public funds misused: staffer fired

By Online Editor
00:45 am GMT+12, 15/06/2015, New Zealand

A taxpayer-funded agency sat on a suspected case of fraud and delayed complaining to police and informing government officials for months, despite the woman at the centre of the case offering an immediate confession.

The case has drawn criticism from Labour MP and former Foreign Affairs Minister Phil Goff, who said the delays and apparent lack of oversight were unacceptable.

Marama Hunia, 33, was sacked in March from her position as Auckland officer manager for Pacific Trade & Investment, an arm of the taxpayer-funded Pacific Island Forum, over suspected misuse of funds.

PT&I is established by law to promote exports activity and investment in the Pacific region.

“I have misappropriated [money]. I guess I’ve done fraud,” Hunia told the NZ Herald.

She had misused her employer’s company petrol and travel cards, including for international flights, during most of the four years she had been employed at PT&I. “I guess it was just so easy for me to do. Just things I used for personal use – it wasn’t for company use. It ended up turning into quite a lot of money.”

She was unaware of the total involved, but agreed it would be many tens of thousands of dollars. Weekend Herald investigations suggest the sum involved exceeds $60,000.

Hunia said she had been open about the fraud since first confronted by PT&I, and even she was surprised by the lack of follow-up action by authorities.

“They said they would get back in touch, but they never have. It’s been nearly six months.”

Auckland police confirmed the receipt of a formal complaint, but said the file was so fresh an officer in charge was yet to be assigned.

The Weekend Herald understands the police complaint was laid only in the past fortnight, four months after concerns were first raised.

A spokesperson said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade was made aware of the possibility of fraud involving taxpayer funds in April, two months after PT&I first began its probe into Hunia’s spending.

The ministry had pressed for more briefings, and PT&I was “improving their financial controls in response to this incident”. The spokesperson said “it would be inappropriate to comment” given the police investigation.

Goff, foreign minister between 1999 and 2005, was critical of the Government’s handling of the incident. “I would have expected police action to have taken place earlier, and I would have expected the funding provider to have been advised earlier,” he said.

The episode should spark major changes at both the ministry and PT&I.

“When you’re putting taxpayer money in for a public good and it’s been hijacked in a fraudulent way, you want to make sure the systems used are improved so that can never happen again,” he said.

The head of PT&I, trade commissioner Michael Greenslade, defended his handling of the affair, saying “stakeholders were advised of the situation” as their investigation into Hunia’s actions progressed.

He took his stewardship of public funds seriously and said a need to establish just what had occurred dictated the timing of the police complaint.

Greenslade said he took up his role in November 2014, after most of the alleged fraud had taken place, and it was “extremely frustrating and very disappointing this issue occurred under previous management”. PT&I had operated with an acting head for a year before his appointment.

Foreign Minister Murray McCully said in a statement: “The allegations are disappointing and rightly a matter for police investigation”…. PACNEWS


15) Fijian PM urges EU to be flexible in finalising EPA ‪
By Online Editor
00:41 am GMT+12, 15/06/2015, Fiji

Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama  Monday called on the European Union (EU) to be more flexible in resolving the stalled Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with Pacific countries.

While opening the Joint ACP – EU Parliamentary Assembly in Suva today, Bainimarama said the impasse must be broken.

“We are now at a crossroads. It is time for the EU and the ACP to conclude an Economic Partnership Agreement that is equitable and fair but that has been so long in the making and still eludes us. We must break the current impasse so we can go beyond 2020, strengthen our relationship and benefit mutually from those renewed ties.

“We ask Europe to be more flexible in these ongoing negotiations. And in turn, the ACP countries must do more themselves to implement the necessary reforms. Unity and solidarity must be our guiding principles. We must speak with one voice in global forums to have our message heard. Because only by doing so can we hope to address the collective challenges that face us all,” Bainimarama told delegates

“While we are at one on the importance of climate change, Europe and the ACP countries have a number of obvious challenges in our relationship. So I would also appeal to the European MPs in the room to give their utmost attention to these challenges – such as the EPA – and gain a greater appreciation of the dynamics from our perspective.

“We especially look to the EU and the rest of the developed world to give us a fairer trading environment. One which accepts that the harsh realities of the global marketplace, always a lot harsher for those hundreds of millions of ordinary men and women struggling to produce goods and services and for whom ready markets are not available,” said Bainimarama.

The European Union has proposed the suspension for the EPA negotiation for three years with the Pacific until the issue of conservation measures on fisheries are resolved.

In response to Bainimarama’s call the Co-chair of the EU- ACP Joint Parliamentary Assembly, Louis Michel said he is  very supportive of the  opinion that the European Union must be flexible in concluding EPA with  ACP countries.

“I always defended the idea that EPA has to be development minded and development oriented. I agree with those who are saying that the European Commission was rather tough in these negotiation and they didn’t really take into account the fact that the EPA must have a development objective.

“We will try to push for the European to be flexible as possible but at the same time, if countries want to benefit from fruits of globalization, they have to build a fiscal system based on the contribution of the people, he Louis Mitchell said.

Meanwhile, Bainimarama also took the opportunity to thank the European Union for taking a lead role in the fight against climate change in the lead up to the Paris Climate change talks in December.

“I want to warmly thank the countries of the European Union for facing up to that moral challenge and taking a lead on climate change. The EU has committed itself to reducing carbon emissions by 40 per cent by 2030. And you are leading the global movement for change in a manner that has commanded respect and gratitude from Fiji and other small island nations.

“In contrast to some of our bigger neighbours in the Pacific, you are proving to be a development partner in the true sense of the word. In that you are putting the interests of more vulnerable nations such as ours before the interests of some of your carbon polluting industries.

“With so many members of the European Parliament in the room today, can I extend to each and every one of you our sincere thanks for the principled stand that you and your nations have taken. Fiji seeks your continuing support in the lead up to the Paris Summit. And especially your individual efforts to highlight the plight we face and do whatever you can to make our concerns known in Europe and elsewhere .

“We have just less than six months collectively to get the world to realise that the time for merely talking is over. This is the time for concrete action. And if the global community again baulks at decisive action, history and the generations to come will judge those developed nations which didn’t act extremely harshly for their selfishness and stupidity,” he said.

The co- chair of the ACP – EU joint Parliamentary Assembly, Jamaican Fitz Jackson also highlighted the plight faced my Small Islands developing states on the effects of climate change.

“Our presence here should help us to appreciate the importance of supporting the development efforts of this and other countries in the region and the need to preserve their livelihoods and cultures. We hope that all of us will speak up for all the Pacific Islands and the threats that they face from the effects of climate change such as rising sea levels and coastal erosion.

“For this reason, the Assembly deliberately chose to discuss some topics that are of general relevance to all ACP states but of particular interest to this region, such as biodiversity, renewable energy, fisheries, maritime security and piracy, and seabed minerals.

“These issues are not merely trade or economic imperatives; they are about the livelihoods and sustainable development and future prospects of small island developing states, SIDS as we now call them.  As an example, just ask yourselves what the fate of this beautiful country and people would be without the EU market for its sugar? On the other hand, the impact of human activity in the oceans, whether it is nuclear testing or overfishing, will impact on the livelihoods of the people of the Pacific.

“Yesterday, I was part of the group that visited a fish processing plant, which is just one example of the capacity of our countries to supply products of the highest quality to world markets, and in the process, generating employment and revenue for the country that is more sustainable than aid.  But such industries can only survive and prosper if the rules and regulations governing world trade are favourable. Speaking directly to our EU colleagues – I would appeal to you to look closely at the regulations and legislative proposals that come before you, and ensure that they are in harmony with the long-term development objectives of developing countries, especially SIDS, said Jackson.

He said the JPA is uniquely placed to be the advocate of development for the peoples of the South and the North.

“Together, we can build on the positive attributes of our shared history to contribute to the attainment of global objectives of sustainable development for the mutual benefit of the people that we represent in our respective regions and countries of the ACP and Europe. Ours is a platform that we can use to engage the world on the fact that development is not a zero sum game; it can and MUST be a win-win cause,” he said.



16) ‘No deal’ with Greece as talks in Brussels fail

BBC News
Monday, June 15, 2015

Update: 12:48PM THE latest round of talks between Greek and EU officials in Brussels has failed to reach an agreement.

A European Commission spokesman said while that progress was made on Sunday, “significant gaps” remained.

Europe wants Greece to make spending cuts worth  two billion euros ($F4.66bn), to secure a deal that will unlock bailout funds.

Greek deputy prime minister Yannis Dragasakis said that Athens was still ready to negotiate with its lenders.

He said Greek government proposals submitted on Sunday had fully covered the fiscal deficit as demanded.

However, Mr Dragasakis added that the EU and IMF still wanted Greece to cut pensions – something Athens has said it would never accept.

IMF chief economist Olivier Blanchard said in a blog post that an agreement will require “difficult decisions”, with “tough choices and tough commitments to be made on both sides”.

The cash-strapped nation is trying to agree a funding deal with the European Union and IMF before the end of June to avoid a default.

Eurozone finance ministers will discuss Greece when they meet on Thursday. The gathering is regarded as Greece’s last chance to strike a deal.

The Commission spokesman said: “President [Jean-Claude] Juncker remains convinced that with stronger reform efforts on the Greek side and political will on all sides, a solution can still be found before the end of the month.”

The talks come as Germany ramps up pressure on Greece. Vice-chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said on Sunday that European nations were losing patience with Greece.

Germany wanted to keep Greece in the eurozone, but writing in Bild he warned that “not only is time running out, but so too is patience across Europe”.

Mr Sigmar is also economy minister and head of junior coalition partners the Social Democrats.

“Everywhere in Europe, the sentiment is growing that enough is enough,” he wrote.

Greece is seeking to avoid defaulting on a 1.5bn debt repayment to the IMF due by the end of the month.

Creditors have demanded cuts in spending in return for another tranche of bailout funds.

But Greece’s ruling left-wing Syriza party, led by Alexis Tsipras, was elected in January on promises to ease up on the highly unpopular austerity measures, increase the minimum monthly wage and create more jobs.

However, on Saturday Mr Tsipras warned the Greek people to prepare for a “difficult compromise”.


17) Technical college comes alive with traditional singsing

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

THE Port Moresby Technical College came alive last Saturday with traditional singsing and performances by students from 16 provincial groups.
Principal Allan Tira said it was the first cultural event at the institution in 10 years. Tira said the college aimed to continue the show.
“Our cultures are dying and it’s very important for young people to preserve their culture while being students here.
“Our very young bubus (grand children) cannot speak our mother tongue these days. We might lose our native language down the line. We need to preserve our cultural traditions and language,” he said.
National Capital District Governor Powes Parkop praised the students and the college management for successfully hosting the show. He gave K1,500 to the event.
“This show is to promote you culture and identity while you are here at the college.
“Imagine a community in PNG without singsings or celebration to mark a particular occasion,” he said.
“PNG is culturally diverse. Student diversity is our strength. At this occasion, get to know each other’s culture, respect and preserve it.”

18) Study programme aims to improve reading skills

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

CHILDREN from Fisherman Island near Port Moresby are expected to improve their reading skills under a reading and study programme initiated by a local academic.
Gima Keimelo of Fishermen Island, who is a lecturer at the University of Papua New Guinea, revealed that no student from the island’s primary school had entered university.
“Children from this island who attended other primary schools in town were able to reach universities but not those that attended the primary school here at the island,” he said.
“Everyone is at fault. Parents must take ownership of their children and be serious of their children’s education and the children must be serious with their studies
“Teachers also must be committed to giving the best to the children despite the challenges faced.”
He said attendance of the children had improved and more children were able to read simple books.
He commended the Gordon Secondary School and Buk Bilong Pikinini for donating books to the islanders.

“Last year only one out of 20 Grade 8 students made it to High School so I want the children to read more books and do well in school,” Keimelo said


19) Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 15 June 2015

by bobmakin

Not a lot today. Former government strategists are blamed for the downfall of the Natuman Government. Apparently MP Samson Samsen said he would vote for Natuman and testify against Carcasses in the bribery case, but failed to honour the promise. Hosea Nevu and Morkin Stevens simply crossed the floor five minutes before the motion was voted last Thursday, says Daily Post. Radio Vanuatu today has the new PM, Sato Kilman, urging DGs in all departments to work with him in the new government. Radio News announced a Nagriamel leadership congress in Radio News. This is to deal with Nagriamel floor crossers and the candidates for the Luganville municipal elections.

20) Vanuatu MP Confident He Has Numbers To Oust New Gov
Related to potential negative impact on cyclone recovery

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 15, 2015) – Vanuatu’s opposition leader says he is confident the opposition has the numbers to pass a motion of no confidence in the Sato Kilman government this week.

Mr Kilman took government on Thursday after the then-opposition ousted the previous government of Joe Natuman in its own motion of no confidence.

But less than 24 hours later, Edward Natapei submitted his own motion with the parliament’s speaker, which will be voted on on Thursday.

Mr Natapei says he submitted it because a change in government to a Sato Kilman regime will affect the country’s recovery from Cyclone Pam.

“It is our concern that this recent change in government could delay the implementation of Pam’s recovery programmes, which will affect the donor partners’ confidence in assisting Vanuatu. We feel that with a new government and people in place who are not familiar with it, it could just cause further delays.”

Edward Natapei has also denied that Cyclone Pam has started to be used by MPs for political gain.

Radio New Zealand International

21) Vanuatu Parliament To Debate Another No-confidence Motion
Majority of new government implicated in bribery case

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 15, 2015) – Vanuatu’s opposition filed a motion of no-confidence in the Prime Minister, Sato Kilman, on Friday, less than 24 hours after he came to power in a no-confidence vote on Thursday.

The notice, signed by 10 MPs, has been lodged with parliament’s speaker and will be debated next Thursday.

The opposition says Mr Kilman’s appointment should be terminated and a new prime minister appointed, citing the devastation caused by cyclone Pam.

It says the effect of losing cyclone reconstruction programmes, which were put together by the previous government of Joe Natuman, outweighs a change in government as the confidence of donor partners will be affected.

It also argues that with the majority of the new government implicated in a bribery case currently before the Supreme Court, the government will be forced to interfere in the judicial process.

The motion will need the support of 27 MPs for it to be successful.

Meanwhile, the bribery case against 19 MPs in Vanuatu was adjourned on Friday by the Magistrates’ Court until the June 23rd.

The 19 MPs are charged with bribery over police claims regarding Moana Carcasses and his attempts to lobby support to topple the then prime minister.

The group were opposition MPs at the time the charges were laid, along with Mr Carcasses.

But a no confidence vote on Thursday lead to the Natuman-led government being ousted, with Sato Kilman voted in as prime minister and Moana Carcasses as his deputy.

Radio New Zealand International

22) Bougainville swears in new parliament

15 June 2015

The autonomous Papua New Guinea region of Bougainville has today sworn in members of parliament following the six week long election process.

Guests for the inauguration of John Momis, who was easily re-elected president, included the acting PNG Prime Minister, Leo Dion, the Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia and the newly re-appointed PNG police chief Gari Baki.

The Post Courier reports others wanting to attend the inauguration had begun arriving in Buka on Saturday.

The new ABG is expected to quickly settle into its work to prepare the autonomous region for a referendum to consider whether to embrace full independence or stay in the PNG fold.

That process needs to be completed before 2020.

Meanwhile an international observer group, that had been in Bougainville to monitor the poll, has praised officials, saying the vote count was carried out with integrity, and the process transparent.RNZI


23) Lifting of journo ban good for Papua women

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

THE lifting of the ban on foreign journalists to enter Papua province in Indonesia is to help address violence on women and children, Indonesia’s Women Empowerment and Child Protection Minister Yohana Yembise says.
Yembise, one of the eight women in President Joko Widodo’s Cabinet, is a former academic at the Cenderawahi University near Jayapura city in Papua.
She believes that domestic violence was rife in Papua because of the lack of awareness and media coverage on the issue.
Yembise told journalists from the Melanesian Spearhead Group countries, and from New Zealand and Australia in Jakarta, that Widodo had allowed journalists to freely enter Papua.
“So that is the biggest achievement to allow foreign journalists in to report on domestic violence to change the mentality of the Papua people,” she said.
“Domestic violence on women and children is big in Papua and the media needs to report more on that issue to change their mentality.” Yembise, from Biak Island, Papua Province said domestic violence was caused by men who drank too much alcohol.
She also said the Melanesian culture was still strong where man dominated society.
“It is hard to deal with man and only when we change the mentality then I believe there will be a reduction in domestic violence.”

24) More signals from Jakarta about opening up Papua

15 JUNE 20156

There are further signs from Indonesia’s government that it is willing to open up access to the Papua region.

The Minister for Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection, who is Indonesia’s first Papuan minister, says by reporting on Papua, journalists can help address the region’s main problems, such as violence.

Yohana Yembise says violence, including domestic and sexual violence, is Papua’s number one problem, and that men still hold the economic power in the region.

According to Ms Yembise, President Joko Widodo has made developing Papua one of his top priorities, and that his claim last month about lifting media restrictions is a sign things are changing.

While subsequent comments by senior government figures contradicted the president’s claim about relaxed restrictions, the Director General of Information in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs insists the process has changed.

Esti Andayani says the ‘Clearing House’ made up of representatives from the major government departments, including the military and police, with the power to reject visa applications, has been abolished.

She says the hope is that if journalists can go to West Papua they will be able to tell more balanced stories about what happens there.

Ms Andayani says that up until now, what is reported in the media are just small parts of the story.RNZI


25) Enga subsidises airfare

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

THE Enga provincial government has paid LinkPNG K250,000 as an airfare subsidy to encourage economic growth.
“The air service to Wapenamanda is vital to drive Enga as one of the education hubs,” Enga Governor Peter Ipatas said.
Ipatas also thanked LinkPNG for subsidising the essential service in the past 13 years though the partnership. The airline operates seven flights from Wapenamanda to Port Moresby. “Economically, it does affect the Enga province in terms of development,” he said.
He said the subsidy was to help grassroots people save time and reduce the transport costs for public servants on hired vehicles and accommodations in other provinces.
“We have to stimulate and maintain the economy in the province,” he said. He also clarified that the subsidy airfare included all people of Engan.
He also promised LinkPNG that due to the increasing number of activities in the province, the provincial government would  increases its support for the airline from K1 millionto K2 million annually.

26) Woman reaps first harvest under project

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

A RICE farmer in Central has successfully yielded her first harvest under a trial farm project with Trukai Industries Ltd.
Eileen Iambul (pictured) of Magabaira, Kairuku district, began her rice field last year after she offered a portion of her land to Trukai to trial the farming of 12 varieties of local and Trukai rice under the Amadi-Baga pilot project.
Last Friday, Trukai began the first harvest of four hectares of the rice field which was expected to produce 12 tonnes of rice valued at K8000.
Trukai’s rice development officer Humphrey Saese said Iambul’s commitment to the project showed that there were opportunities for people to make use of their resources and earn an income.
“The biggest resource that people in the country have is their labour and their land and that’s the thinking that we (Trukai) promote,” he said.
“Eileen and her family have two hundred hectares of land and they have their own family living next to that land. “So it demonstrates that people can move from a backyard that has a potential to yield to a move forward with an opportunity like this, from zero income to some level of income.”
Iambul said she was happy to participate in the project.
“The people of Magabaira were very interested when Trukai came into the village to do awareness,” she said. “And I am very happy that I had put my hand up to Trukai to participate in this project and to plant rice.
“You can now see the four hectares of rice growing and ready for harvesting.”

  27) Business loans ready

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

PEOPLE of Yangoru-Saussia in East Sepik will now be able to get loans from K1000 to K20,000 from the People’s Micro Bank Ltd (PMBL) for business purposes.
Local MP Richard Maru announced this last Friday signing an agreement with PMBL chief executive officer Anthony Dela Cruz for the “Save na Kisim” scheme.
Maru, who is also Trade, Commerce and Industry Minister, said the district would provide half of the guarantee required to secure loans and other half would be met by borrowers.
An initial K500,000 was provided by district to roll-out the scheme.
Maru said the people would have access to loans at PMBL’s Wewak branch.
“For my district, we want to leave the small businesses to our local people because if we don’t, they will not have other ways to grow,” he said.
Cruz said 12 per cent interest would be charged on loans borrowed.
“A borrower borrows K1000, will pay K120 interest for one year,” he said.
“It’s like paying K10 interest every month and repayment depends on nature of the cash flow of the client.
“If they (borrowers) make weekly income then they can come weekly to make payments … they make fortnightly then they come fortnightly to make repayments, etc.”
He added that turn-around time for approval would be three days, given that borrowers meet the requirements.
Cruz said a requirement would be that borrowers should have existing small businesses.
Maru said three days prior to the district’s small and medium (SME) day on July 3, PMBL would be opening accounts for clients with the scheme.

Cruz said so far 10 clients had been identified for the scheme

28) FIJI, PNG enhance business relations

Monday, June 15, 2015

Update: 11:32AM The Fiji-Papua New Guinea Business Council will host a networking event for members at the Holiday Inn in Suva tonight.

The event aims to enhance business relations between Fiji and Papua New Guinea.

CP Group and Telikom PNG chairman Mahesh Patel is expected to be the guest speaker.

The event starts from 5.30pm to 8.30pm. Fijitimes

29) PNG Looks To Penalize Commercial Banks 

At issue profits over foreign exchange dealings

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 15, 2015) – Papua New Guinea’s Prime Minister says he is looking at penalising commercial banks that he says are making businesses suffer because they are not happy with foreign currency restrictions imposed by the Central Bank.

Peter O’Neill says the banks have been giving people a hard time and the government has been talking with the Governor of the Bank of PNG to impose tougher penalties.

The Post Courier reports Mr O’Neill saying the banks are making massive profits from foreign exchange dealings, and the central bank needed to intervene because of the margins.

He says the banks have been unable to maintain a steady exchange rate, which has made the cost of importing goods expensive for businesses.

Mr O’Neill says in other parts of the world banks would be punished with heavy fines for such behaviour, and he is looking at doing the same in Papua New Guinea.

Radio New Zealand International


30) Censors seeking internet filter

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

THE PNG Censorship Board is hoping to have an internet filtering system in place soon as a measure to control unsolicited data and transactions entering the country, particularly those related to pornography.
Director (strategic policy co-ordination) of the Office of Censorship Ilikomau Ali told The National that the concept had been endorsed by the Security Advisory Council and was expected to be passed in Parliament by the end of this year.
The concept, designed by the Censorship Office, will enable security agencies, including police, the Defence Force, Customs and Immigration offices to deal directly with any unsolicited material for which they are responsible.
“It’s not to suppress people’s rights to information but to minimise the flow of unwanted materials,” Censorship Office’s principal mass media adviser Robroy Chiki said.
An internet filter is a programme that restricts unwanted information delivered over the internet and reduces the flow of harmful contents to electronic devices such as computers and mobile phones.
Deputy Chief Censor Jim Abani said the system, once in place, could be used as a tool to detect other security issues like money laundering and illegal trade which could then be referred to relevant authorities to investigate.
“It’s just a one-stop shop where once information reaches the database and is found to be unsolicited, it is sent to other agencies responsible for their areas,” he said.

31) 33 former workers, 156 unemployed register with Employment Service Vanuatu

By Len Garae

Posted: Saturday, June 13, 2015 1:00 pm

A total of thirty three former formal sector workers who lost their jobs due to Cyclone Pam and 156 unemployed youths have already registered with Employment Services Vanuatu (ESV).

The registration period started on 4th June, 2015 and will be open until Friday 19th June 2015 and is currently targeting Efate residents only.

A confident Commissioner of Labour, Lionel Kaluat says, “Registrations for our target groups are progressing well and we are simultaneously establishing a database to capture information and data on skills sets and interests available for work”.

The Commissioner of Labour is also Chair of the Tripartite Labour Advisory Council (TLAC).

“I therefore encourage more former formal sector workers and unemployed youths to register at ESV,” he adds.

Frank Garae was the first ni-Vanuatu to register at ESV. He was last employed a day after Cyclone Pam as a waiter/bartender at a large resort in Vanuatu.

“Since then, he has not been able to return to the labour force, hence to date losing three months of personal income and not able to support his family,” Kaluat explains.

Eighteen-year old Ms Melody John was the first youth to register at ESV. She is seeking training and employment opportunities through registering at ESV.

“After the registration period and creation of database, the next steps will be career counselling, training and referral and job placements,” said Lerrain Loughman, the Government lead for this initiative.

“Therefore, in order to access these post registration services, it is important that interested and unemployed persons register with ESV.”

Media partners Vanuatu Daily Post, Buzz FM, Christian Radio Station and Digicel are supporting the promotion of the registration period and process. A facebook page has also been established to reach as many of the target group as possible to avail information on where and how to register.

On 3rd June the former Minister for Internal Affairs, Charlot Salwai, while launching Employment Services Vanuatu said that he was very pleased to see one of the recommendations in the Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) being implemented.

He also said that while this initiative is Government led, he was very grateful for the technical assistance provided by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) as it is in-line with Government’s recovery and development plans.Vanuatu Daily Post


32) Refugee in PNG in hiding after advert

15 June 2015

A refugee is reportedly in hiding on Manus Island after allegedly being tricked by Papua New Guinea immigration officials into making an advertisement promoting resettlement.

The ABC reports that 33-year-old Haider Khan as saying other refugees have threatened his life after he appeared in a newspaper advert holding a sign saying: “Thank you for helping us”.

Mr Khan says he did not agree to the campaign and asked PNG officials not to use his image publicly.

He has been in hiding since he fled the Australian transit centre for refugees three days ago.

Mr Khan said PNG immigration officials paid him and promised him a meeting with the immigration minister, as well as refugee status, if he agreed to the photo.

An advertisement was later published in two national newspapers, stating “The government has permitted refugees to live and rebuild their lives in PNG – Let’s give them a positive start.”

No refugees have been resettled in PNG in the almost two years since it agreed to host an asylum seeker detention camp for Australia, nor does it have a resettlement policy.RNZI


33) Greenpeace Pacific Forum Calls For Action On Climate Change
Declaration signed for immediate action

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 15, 2015) – Village leaders from Tuvalu, Kiribati, Vanuatu, Fiji and Solomon Islands have signed a declaration calling for immediate action on climate change.

A senior oceans campaigner for Greenpeace, Lagi Toribau, says a meeting was held in Port Vila last week for communities affected by Cyclone Pam to voice their concerns about climate change.

Mr Toribau says the leaders say they are tired of waiting for the international community to decide their fate.

“We got a really strong sense from the community leaders that they wanted to do more. That they are sick of waiting. I mean we are looking at the upcoming 21st COP meeting that is 21 meetings that they have had and you know what have they, what have they delivered?”

Lagi Toribau says the meeting marked the end of a 20-day relief mission by Greenpeace’s flagship vessel, the Rainbow Warrior, which made 26 aid drops across 13 islands alongside 10 other aid organisations in Vanuatu.

Greenpeace and other groups are marking the 30th anniversary of the bombing of The Rainbow Warrior by French agents in Auckland in 1985. The Governor of Ha’apai, Mo’ale Finau.

Radio New Zealand International


34) Nautilus Minerals announces extension

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

NAUTILUS Minerals says it has agreed to extend by six months the exercise date for options granted to its joint venture partner in the Solwara 1 Project.
Last December, the company and state nominee, Eda Kopa Ltd, a subsidiary of Petromin PNG Holdings Ltd, formed a joint venture for the deep-sea mining project.
Under the terms of the venture, Eda Kopa took an initial 15 per cent interest with an option to take up additional 15 per cent interest within a year on paying certain amounts pursuant to a formula described in the agreement.
The option was exercisable in three 5 per cent lots within six, nine and 12 months respectively from the date the joint venture was formed.
If Eda Kopa does not exercise any of the five per cent options within the relevant time period then that option and any subsequent options are deemed to have lapsed.
To facilitate further discussion between the Nautilus and Eda Kopa, the Canadian subsea miner has agreed to extend the exercise date of the three five per cent options by six months respectively.

35) 358 exhibitors to participate at Toursim Fiji expo

Monday, June 15, 2015

Update: 3:55PM THE Fijian Tourism Expo will include the participation of 358 exhibitors in Denarau, Nadi, over the next three days.

Major sponsor Pacific Destinations will host an opening ceremony at the Sofitel Fiji Resort tomorrow morning before business appointments get under way at the Sheraton Fiji Resort, where 121 booths are being set up.

Figures from organisers Tourism Fiji, note that 151 buyers will be present at the expo, alongside 18 international media representatives.

The fete ends on Thursday and has been deliberately slotted ahead of the Australian Tourism Exchange in Melbourne to ease travel routes for buyers from long haul markets.Fijitimes


36) Centre for women

Shayal Devi
Monday, June 15, 2015

A WOMEN’S development centre costing $498,000 will be established in Ba to educate them on techniques involved in exporting local goods.

The development centre is funded by the Japanese Government and will also present opportunities to train women in cookery and sewing.

During the groundbreaking ceremony yesterday, Ba Women’s Forum president Dr Maria Doton said the centre would be a complete facility.

“It will have a kitchen for food handling, baking and cooking preserves and we also have an area for sewing and other trainings,” she said.

“The Japanese Embassy has also given 10 heavy sewing machines and all the facilities, the stoves and benches that go with this building.”

Dr Doton said the training centre would help boost the confidence of women and inspire them to get into the export trade.

Minister for Local Government Parveen Kumar was present at the event and said the centre would represent the value that the community placed on the development of rural women.

“I have been informed that the centre will provide training programs to upskill our women in their production and business management,” he said.

“This will ensure the marketing of your products locally and internationally with the unique brand and identity of Ba.”

Mr Kumar said the project would also help towards the alleviation of poverty.Fijitimes

37) Kids top helpline call list

Atasa Moceituba
Monday, June 15, 2015

THE Ministry of Social Welfare has received 1851 calls on its Child Helpline within three months after its launch in April this year.

This was revealed by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Rosy Akbar.

Ms Akbar said from the 1851 calls they had received, 153 cases had been referred to the Department of Social Welfare since it involved children’s welfare, adding the cases included report cases of physical abuse, emotional abuse and many more.

“A total of 153 cases had been referred to the Department of Social Welfare particularly cases concerning the welfare and wellbeing of children,” Ms Akbar said.

“Most of the callers are children who use the Helpline to report cases of physical abuse, emotional abuse and seek advice on issues like teenage pregnancies, peer relationship and family conflicts. Some callers also enquire about the Department of Social Welfare programs and the financial assistance we provide.”

She said it was very encouraging to find out that people were actually making use of the helpline.

Ms Akbar said they also received calls from adults who mostly wanted to enquire information on issues such as adoption policies, missing child, mental health care, child care advice and positive parenting tips and many more.

She said the Helpline operated from 6am to 6pm and seven days a week and they had a team of counsellors who were there to assist the members of the public.Fijitimes

38) Fiji Minister: Child Labor Needs To Be Eradicated

Over 173 cases in last 4 years

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, June 13, 2015) – Over 173 cases of child labour have been recorded in Fiji over the last 4 years.

FBC reports this was highlighted by the acting Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Jone Usamate while opening the World Day against Child Labour in Suva on Friday.

Mr Usamate says it is everybody’s business to try and eradicate child labor in Fiji, and that child labour is not only found in businesses but also in our homes.

He says there are instances in our homes and communities where children have had to stay home and miss school to tend to family commitments such crop harvesting or looking after younger siblings.

He says this means children miss out on school, and don’t get the development they need.

Radio New Zealand International


39) New Ireland choir to travel to US for SDA event

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

A CHOIR from New Ireland is travelling to the United States to represent the country at a major Seventh Day Adventist event.
The Emirau Praise Choir will be sending a large contingent to perform, courtesy of Kavieng MP Ben Micah.
The choir performed for a large audience at the People’s Progress Party fundraiser in Port Moresby on Saturday night. “This choir is going to San Antonio in Texas,” Micah said.
“In two weeks’ time they’re be performing for a global audience of 70,000 Seventh Day Adventists who meet every five years to change the leadership of the world church.
“They have been selected from throughout the  Pacific to represent the Seventh Day Adventist Church.”


40) All set to go

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

By Malum Nalu, Peter Pusal and Henry Kario
SPORTS Minister Justin Tkatchenko says Port Moresby is ready to host the Pacific Games, after 15,000 people enjoyed the new facilities at Sir John Guise stadium for the first time last Saturday.
As a bonus, the excited partisan crowd watched the Hunters come from behind to beat the South Logan Magpies 34-12 in a Queensland Cup rugby league match.
The Games opening ceremony will be held at the stadium on Saturday July 4.
Tkatchenko and National Capital District Governor Powes Parkop were overjoyed after the match as they walked across the road to a function at Vision City.
“We’ve just had a successful Hunters game, beat the Magpies before a capacity crowd of over 15,000 people. Unbelievable,” he said.
“As you can hear from my voice, we were screaming, shouting, and crying.
“But it was something very special for our city and our country – as a test event for our venues and our infrastructure for the Pacific Games. Let’s bring it on. We are Games-ready,” Tkatchenko said.
Acting Prime Minister Leo Dion was overwhelmed.
“The noise as I was driving past the stadium was overwhelming,” he said. “It is a good sign and Papua New Guineans can celebrate.”
Central and National Capital District Acting Police Commissioner Jerry Frank was pleased with how things tuned out because they were expecting a “more challenging” assignment for the police.
He thanked the people for behaving and staying out of trouble.
Pacific Games Organising Committee chief executive officer Peter Stewart told The National that the overwhelming response from the public was “Wow”.
“We had a sold-out venue of 15,000 people for the Hunters game and besides the usual minor teething problems, all our processes ran smoothly,” Stewart said.
“The whole idea of having a test event is to go through our systems and ensure that everything is running well.
“There will always be little problems but we were satisfied with how things went on the night.
“There were some really minor stuff such as the locks not working on one of the toilets. But there was nothing of concern.”
He said the movement of people and security went without any hitches.
“We had a mag-and-bag process in place at the entry points so there was no alcohol, dangerous weapons of any sort and even cigarettes brought in,” he said.
“The stands were filled to capacity and we had no issues whatsoever with the crowd. Any concerns about the safety of the structures, particularly the western and eastern stands, were dispelled. Those stands are structurally sound.”

41) Oceania proud of Solomons’ participation in hockey

The National, Monday June 15th, 2015

THE Oceania Hockey Federation was buoyed at the news of Solomon Islands sending a hockey team to the Pacific Games for the first time.
Oceania Hockey Federation Continental development officer Gill Gemming expressed the federation’s gratitude and promised to make a final visit to the team before the Games kick off next month.
“Oceania is so excited that the Solomon Islands have a team entered in the Pacific Games,” Gemming said.
“I have arranged a goalkeeping set for your goalkeeper for the Games and I will take the kit to Honiara and run some coaching for your team and goalkeeper.
“I am keen to meet with Solomon Island Hockey Association executive and the NOCSI, meet with its management for Pacific Games so that I can upskill them on their roles.”
Gemming said he would run a workshop on hockey five-a-side rules, including handing out booklets and run coaching sessions.
Last week the SIHA received a grant of A$1500 (K3100) from OHF to help with the preparations of the team for the Games.
This comes as a boost to their preparations. This will be the first hockey team to represent the country at the Pacific Games.

42) Top lifters represent Australia at 2015 Pacific Games

Shalveen Chand
Monday, June 15, 2015

FIFTEEN Australian weightlifters have been selected to compete at the Pacific Games in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, in July, for some it will be a pathway to the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

The Team includes Commonwealth Games athletes Malek Chamoun and Erika Ropati-Frost (nee-Yamasaki).

Chamoun was diagnosed with the degenerative condition retinitis pigmentosa as a child and is legally blind but despite this, the Sydneysider is aiming to claim gold across all three categories at the Pacific Games clean and jerk, snatch and overall.

The 26-year-old says he’s learnt a great deal from his experience at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow last year, where he failed to complete one lift.

“When I last represented Australia I didn’t do as well as I wanted to. This time when I wear the green and gold I am keen to do much better,” he said.

The Pacific Games is one of the first International Weightlifting Federation approved qualifying events for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games for Australian athletes.

Chamoun has his sights set on making his Olympic debut.

For Ropati-Frost, a dual Commonwealth Games competitor and bronze medallist, the Pacific Games will be a chance to test herself against fierce competition in Papua New Guinea.

“My biggest competition in the region is PNG’s Dika Toua. She’s always beaten me and it will be tough to face her in front of a home crowd, but I want to take home all three gold medals,” she said.

The team also includes two Youth Olympic Games competitors, Liam Larkins and Kiana Elliot.

2015 Pacific Games chef de nission, Olympic gold medallist Malcolm Page, says he’s excited Australia will be sending a team to the Games for the first time.

The Games run from 4-18 July, with more than 3000 athletes from 21 countries competing in 28 sports.

The first Games were held in 1963 in Suva, Fiji and are held every four years, with hosting rights shared across the South Pacific region.

The Games will form an integral part of commemorations for Papua New Guinea as it celebrates its 40th year of independence.

* Pacific Games coverage courtesy of BSP//Fijitimes

43) Mali shocks Germany

Monday, June 15, 2015

CHRISTCHURCH – Mali continue to defy the odds at the FIFA U20 World Cup after they booked their place in the semi-finals with a 4-3 win on penalties over Germany following a well-fought 1-1 draw in Christchurch.

Julian Brandt’s opener had put the tournament favourites ahead, though a Djigui Diarra penalty save and Souleymane Coulibaly header levelled things up, leaving the sides level for an hour. Niklas Stark then fired the crucial spot-kick wide and sent Fanyeri Diarra’s send into dreamland.

The outstanding moment of the opening passages of play was a disappointing one for the match, as Germany’s top scorer Marc Stendera was forced off the field, and without him the tournament’s most prolific side struggled to find their rhythm. Good pressing from the Malians limited their chances, although the Africans often struggled to make any themselves.

A couple from efforts from distance were all that brought either goalkeeper into action before Frank Wormuth’s charges broke the deadlock shortly before the break. A Hany Mukhtar free-kick couldn’t get beyond the defensive wall, but the ball eventually fell to Brandt, who hit a volley from the edge of the area that skipped off the turf and into the bottom corner.

Mali returned after the break looking bright and up for the challenge. Their early pressure looked to have been for nothing though after the referee pointed to the spot for a foul on Jeremy Dudziak. But the Africans held strong as Mukhtar saw his effort saved and, within two minutes, parity was restored.

A foul on the left flank gave Youssouf Kone the chance to swing a cross into the German area and Coulibaly met it perfectly. The defender got free at the front post and his diving header flashed beyond keeper Marvin Schwaebe and into the far corner.

Later, a weak back-pass left Malian hearts in mouths as Hamidou Maiga almost gifted the Germans a path into the last four. Mukhtar should also have atoned for his penalty miss, but directed his header wide, ensuring the game went to extra-time.

Malick Toure should have put Mali ahead for the first time when he headed over from three yards out as the Germans seemed to tire as the additional 30 minutes wore on. A shootout always looked like where it was headed though, and while Adama Traore saw his effort saved, Brandt then fired over before Stark’s off-target effort saw Europe’s two front-runners go out on spot-kicks in the space of minutes.

44) Bismarck in tears after Sharks last home game

Monday, June 15, 2015

DURBAN, South Africa – South African rugby hard man Bismarck du Plessis cried on Saturday after his final Super Rugby appearance for the Sharks ended in a 34-12 home victory over the Stormers.

Du Plessis, a 31-year-old rated among the best hookers in the world, is moving to France with elder brother and Sharks prop Jannie to play in the Top 14 competition.

While the brothers have not disclosed who they are joining, reports link them with Montpellier, where 2007 Rugby World Cup-winning Springboks coach Jake White is in charge.

“Durban has been a very special place for me,” said tearful Bismarck at Kings Park stadium in the Indian Ocean city after his 130th appearance for the Sharks, “and I will never forget my 11 seasons here.

“I will miss my teammates, the supporters and everyone who helped me develop my career.

“I was once the seventh-choice hooker at the Cheetahs and now I am told I am among the best in the world,” Bismarck added after receiving the official man-of-the-match award.

Bismarck recalled how he joined the Sharks after several seasons with the Bloemfontein-based Cheetahs.

“I remember writing my last examinations and packing everything I owned into a little Volkswagen Beetle.

“It took me about 12 hours to drive from Bloemfontein to Durban in a car that could not go much faster than 80 kilometres an hour.

“I had to fill up about six times because it had only a small petrol tank,” he said.

Du Plessis and Northern Bulls hooker Adriaan Strauss are considered certainties to be included in the 31-man Springboks squad for the World Cup in England this September and October.

Bismarck scored the third of five tries as the Sharks romped to victory over a second-string Stormers side after leading 13-9 at half-time.

Sensing they were going to finish third whatever the result, the Cape Town outfit rested their first choices ahead of a home Qualifier (quarter-final) against Australia’s Brumbies next Saturday.

Fly-half Lionel Cronje, scrum-half Stefan Ungerer, fullback Lwazi Mvovo and winger Odwa Ndungane were the other try scorers for the winners. Cronje kicked two conversions and a penalty and his replacement, Fred Zeilinga, slotted a conversion.

The bonus-point victory had no effect on the Sharks’ final placing, though, as they came 11th, 13 points adrift of the last play-off position.

Stormers fly-half Kurt Coleman shrugged off woeful recent place-kicking form to succeed with his four penalty attempts.

45) Bolt unconvincing in New York 200m win

Monday, June 15, 2015

NEW YORK – Jamaican sprint king Usain Bolt came away with a victory but says he has work to do after clocking 20.29sec to win the 200m at the New York Diamond League meeting on Saturday.

Even with a headwind of 2.8 metres per second, Bolt said he was baffled by a performance that included “the worst curve ever in my entire career,” and “concerned” about his form in a season pointed at the World Championships in Beijing in August.

“I’m not overly happy with it,” he said. “The first 100m was poor — was really bad. I didn’t feel like I was going anywhere. I don’t know what happened.”

It was Bolt’s first race in New York since 2008 when he broke the 100m world record for the first time on the same Icahn Stadium track on Randall’s Island.

On Saturday, however, he found himself leaning for the win, sneaking a look to make sure he got the victory ahead of training partner Zharnel Hughes of Anguilla, who was second in 20.32 with Jamaican Julian Forte third in 20.46.

Bolt holds the 100m world record of 9.58sec and the 200m world record of 19.19, both set in 2009.

He won 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay gold at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics but last year was limited by foot and hamstring injuries.

While US sprint rival Justin Gatlin has been burning up the track — posting world leaders of 9.74 in the 100m and 19.68 in the 200m — Bolt said this week he’s focused on making steady progress toward achieving his peak form at Beijing.

However, he clearly was expecting better.

“I don’t know exactly what’s going on,” said Bolt, who said he realised early the race would not be fast.

“I ran for 150m then tried to shut it down, but then I saw Zharnel on my left and had to push again,” he said.

In other races, Tyson Gay, won the men’s 100m in 10.12sec in a brisk headwind of 1.7 metres per second. Gay, his sights on a World Championships challenge after completing an abbreviated doping ban, admitted that after Keston Bledman of Trinidad and Tobago was charged with a false start for flinching in the blocks he was tense at the gun.

“I was little nervous, the starter held us a little bit so I just tried to take some deep breaths,” said Gay, who led Jamaican Nesta Carter (10.15) and South African Akani Simbine (10.18) across the line.

Gay said the victory was a confidence booster with the US World Championship trials coming up in Eugene, Oregon, in a fortnight.

“When you get a victory, you always feel good,” Gay said.

World record-holder David Rudisha returned from an early-season injury scare to canter to victory in the 800 in 1:43.59.


Smol Melanesian Na Pasifik Nius Digest # 1104 ( Sunday 14 June 2015 )


1) Solomon Islands to receive MSG officials – Delegates for the Melanesian Spearhead Group Summit will begin arriving in Honiara early next week ahead of the opening of the Senior Officials Meeting on June 18. The Summit will begin with the Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) to be followed by the MSG Foreign Ministers Meeting (FMM) on June 22 and the Leaders’ Summit on June 24. The Government’s National Planning Taskforce headed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and External Trade is currently finalizing arrangements for the meeting.

2) Jakarta hopeful Vanuatu change will end Papuan MSG bid

12 June 2015
Indonesia says it’s quietly hopeful the change of government in Vanuatu will signal the defeat of West Papua’s bid to join the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

Sato Kilman is known to have a softer stance regarding Vanuatu’s long-held support for West Papua, and as foreign minister recently indicated his country could open an embassy in Jakarta.

The change could potentially sway deliberations at the MSG leaders’ summit in Honiara next week, where a decision will be made on whether to grant West Papua access to the subregional group.

The director of Indonesia’s foreign ministry, Esti Andayani, says her country is carefully watching how things will play out and whether Vanuatu’s policy regarding West Papua will change.

Until now, Vanuatu had voiced support for West Papua’s bid alongside New Caledonia’s FLNKS, while Papua New Guinea and Fiji appear to be leaning against it. Solomon Islands is yet to indicate a position.RNZI

Olgeta - 

Yestede mifala long Gavman saed i sek taem 3 MP i krosem floa blong sapotem mosen blong nogat trast agensem Praem Minista Natuman. Mifala i no bin ekspektem, be taem we mifala redi blong tokbaot mosen long 4 klok yestede, MP Hosea Nevu, MP Samson Samsen mo MP Mokin Steven i bin stanap long ples we oli sidaon long hem wetem mifala long Gavman saed mo wokbaot krosem floa blong palamen blong go sidaon wetem oposisen. Wetem olgeta 3 MP ia, Oposisen i bin gat 27 MP, we hemi inaf blong vot long mosen i pas mo aotem Hon. Natuman olsem PM afta elektem niu PM Hon Sato Kilman. Hon. Sato Kilman i apoentem olgeta ia olsem ol Minista blong hem:
- Deputy Prime Minister & Minister of Trade: Moana Carcasses
- Minister of Foreign Affairs: Serge Vohor
- Minister of Agriculture: Christopher Emelee
- Minister of Justice: Dunstan Hilton
- Minister of Lands: Paul Telukluk
- Minister of Finance & Economic Management: Willie Jimmy
- Minister of Public Utilities: Tony Nari
- Minister of Climate Change: Thomas Laken
- Minister of Internal Affairs: Hosea Nevu
- Minister of Youth & Sports: Toara Daniel
- Minister of Health: Morkin Stevens
- Minister of Education: Alfred Carlot
- Parliamentary Secretary: Steven Kalsakau

Mifala long Oposisen i jas depositim wan Mosen Blong Nogat Trast agensem Praem Minista Sato Kilman, Spika hemi talemaot finis se Mosen hemi “in order”, mo bae Palemen i dibetem Mosen ia long 4 klok long aftenun long Tasde 18 Jun (nekis wik), olsem part blong 1st Odineri Sesen yet.

Ta, MP Ralph Regenvanu //

4) Vanuatu Daily news Digest | A new motion

by bobmakin

The new Vanuatu Opposition of Joe Natuman (PM until yesterday) yesterday deposited a motion of no confidence against the government of Sato Kilman. The Speaker of Parliament has ruled it in order and Parliament will debate the issue next Thursday at 4 pm. It is still part of the First Ordinary Session of Parliament.

The press release did not indicate the reason for the motion, whether for charges of bribery which certain new cabinet members face, or other well documented offences from the past.


5) Japan To Fund Major Upgrade To Wharf In Tonga’s Capital
$25.9 million grant to modernize Nuku‘alofa’s Faua Wharf

NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (Matangi Tonga, June 11, 2015) – A major upgrade and extension for Faua Wharf in Nuku’alofa to be completed by 2018 will be funded by the Government of Japan with an estimated $55.4 million pa’anga [US$25.9 million] grant to modernise Tonga’s domestic passenger terminal and cargo handling in the capital.

Prime Minister Hon ‘Akilisi Pohiva and the Japanese Ambassador HE Mr Yukio Numata signed and exchanged notes on the project at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs office on Wednesday, 10 June.

The project will construct an extension docking site to the western seaside area of the wharf, a new domestic passenger terminal that can accommodate around 700 people and two parking areas.

The Ambassador said this initiative came at the request of the Tongan Government to improve the handling efficiency of both cargo and passengers by separating the domestic and international shipping.

He said the passenger terminal will cater for the special needs of elderly and disabled people by installing gently sloped ramps through its entrances and passageways with the rooftop to have an independent solar system.

The new wharf will strengthen the safety of sea transportation by accommodating ferries such as the MV ‘Otuanga’ofa and MV ‘Onemato and others, he said.

“The new domestic wharf is a substantial leap in the modernisation process of Tonga and is embedded in the concept of reducing isolation by creating greater accessibility for people. It is also envisioned to withstand the impact of natural disasters for longevity.”

The Ambassador said with their contribution these facilities would help Tonga showcase its potential as a capable and leading member of the South Pacific region.

The project is also assistance by the Japanese Government to help Tonga prepare for the 2019 Pacific Games.

The Prime Minister extended Tonga’s heartfelt appreciation for the grant and wished for the bilateral relations between Japan and Tonga to continue growing in strength.

Japan’s Prime Minister Abe announced this project during the PALM7 meeting that was held in Japan last month.

Matangi Tonga Magazine

6) Malietoa heirs meet to discuss title

13 June 2015

 In Samoa, the three factions of the Malietoa paramount title will meet in Sapapalii, Savaii island today for the last round of discussions to find a holder of the title.

The late Malietoa Tanumafili II died eight years ago but the three clans of the Malietoa title have been in disagreement since on whom to choose, an issue which has also been before the courts.

A family member says the heirs of Malietoa Talavou, Malietoa Moli, and Malietoa Natuitasina, have agreed to carry on these meetings in order for the heirs to iron out issues relating to the title.

However the family member hopes the final meeting is a united one, otherwise the heirs of the Malietoa title will go back to court to find a holder.RNZI


7) Micronesia Festival Kicks Off On Guam
Fair provides taste of next year’s Festival of Pacific Arts

By Jerick P Sablan

HAGÅTÑA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, June 11, 2015) – One of the largest festivals on Guam that celebrates the cultures of Micronesia will be held this weekend.

The 28th Annual Guam Micronesia Island Fair kicks off tomorrow at Gov. Joseph Flores Beach Park, also known as Ypao Beach Park, with food, entertainment, local produce, a petting zoo and other activities.

Guam Visitors Bureau General Manager Nathan Denight said this year’s fair is one of the largest with more than 100 vendors participating.

Micronesian islands including Palau, Yap, Marshall Islands, Pohnpei and Kosrae will be at the fair displaying their cultural goods.

Denight said they expect about 30,000 people to come to the fair over the three-day event.

On the main stage, event-goers will be able to see cultural performances from throughout the Micronesian region. Various public school groups will also perform on stage.

The popular Hawaiian band Mana’o Company will perform Saturday and Sunday at 7:30 p.m.

Local bands such as Marianas Homegrown, Love & Hafa Adai and R&R also will perform.

A petting zoo, carabao rides and other fun activities will be available for the kids.

Farmers will be able to sell their produce at the fair’s farmers market.

The fair also will be a taste of what people can expect at next year’s Festival of Pacific Arts, Denight said.

Guam will host FestPac next year, bringing 27 island nations together to celebrate cultures from around the Pacific.

Because of that event, there will not be a Micronesia Island Fair next year.

Pacific Daily News 

8) CNMI concedes US military can acquire land for training

12 June 2015

The Governor of the Northern Marianas says the US military has the power to acquire land in the CNMI for their military activities.

The CNMI is currently reviewing the military’s proposal to use Pagan and Tinian for live-fire training exercises.

Eloy Inos says the military can use the option of eminent domain to acquire more land in the Commonwealth.

The training plans have faced stern opposition from community leaders.

Mr Inos says the bottom line is that the US military and federal government have the power and the right to exercise their power.

He says he supports more open discussions regarding the plans to lease land for military activities.

However Mr Inos says he prefers the US military to initiate the talks rather than the CNMI.

The governor says he will meet with the military top brass toward the end of the month.RNZI


9) Cooks PM to lodge complaint against NZ website

 12 June 2015
The Cook Islands prime minister Henry Puna is to lay a complaint with the New Zealand Media Council over allegedly false information published by the New Zealand website last month.

The Cook Islands News says Mr Puna launched an attack in Parliament over the reporting of the Cook Islands campaign to join the United Nations.

Mr Puna says the journalists angled their story to state that such a policy would mean that Cook Islanders would be losing their New Zealand citizenship.

But he says there is no substance to the story whatsoever, adding that during a meeting with Cook Islanders in New Zealand this week, he had to reiterate there was no truth in the Stuff story.

Mr Puna says the journalists never gave him the courtesy of an interview or a response to questions on what they wrote.

The article says the office of the Cook Islands secretary for Foreign Affairs and Immigration did not respond to an interview request.RNZI

Mr Puna says he is filing a complaint with the Media Council in New Zealand against the writers of the article.Over 22,000 Pacific applications for NZ residency – The results of a ballot which gives people from five Pacific countries an opportunity to gain residency in New Zealand are being announced today. More than 22,000 applications were received this year under the Samoan Quota and Pacific Access Category. This year more than 9,000 Samoans applied under the Samoan Quota, where 1,100 places are available. Nearly 2,500 applications were received from Tonga, for which just 250 places are allowed. In Kiribati 1,185 registrations were received for 75 places, while demand was lower in Tuvalu with 334 applying for the same allocation.,000-pacific-applications-for-nz-residency


10) Nupla Bougainville gavman imas sapotim turisam

Updated 12 June 2015, 12:54 AEST

Caroline Tiriman

Wok turisam bai nap helpim planti pipal long Bougainville winim wok mining

Odio: Direkta blong Tourism long Bougainville Mr Lawrence Bele itoktok wantem Caroline Tiriman

Nupla Autonomas Bougainville gavman imas putim planti moa moni long apim na strongim turisam indastri long Bougainville long wonem em bai helpim planti pipal.

Despla em askim blong Direkta blong Tourism, Mr Lawrence Bele taem ol pipal i redi long lukim nupla gavman bihaenim namb tri ileksan.

Mr Bele itok tu olsem Bougainville igat planti kaen samting em ol pipal blong ol narapla kantri iken lukim olsem, klinpla environment, ol bikpla bus, kalsa na tu planti samting blong second world war istap nabaut long olgeta hap blong Bougainville.

Emi tok tu olsem planti bikpla turis ship iwok long go raon nau long Bougainville, tasol oli laikim turisam bai kamap olsem wanpla bikpla wok emi nap halpim ol pipal.ABC

11) Solomon Islands meri na Midia

Updated 12 June 2015, 13:09 AEST

Sam Seke

Ol meri i mekim wok painimaut long wonem kaen stori em midia isave karim long ol meri blong kantri

Odio: Lisa Horiwapu blong Vois Blong Mere Solomon Islands itoktok wantem Sam Seke

Solomon Islands ibin mekim wanpela sevei oa wok painimaut  long ol stori blong ol meri long ol nius media long kantri ino long taim igo pinis.

Vois Blong Mere NGO blong National Council of Women ibin mekim despla sevei aninit long wanem ol i kolim Global Media Monitoring Program.

Program Manager blong Vois Blong Mere, Lisa Horiwapu i tok as tingting long dispela sevei em long painim aut long naba na wanem kain stori blong ol meri ol nius media i save karim.

Em i tok ol dispela kain infomesen oa stori i ken helpim ol long save long wanem i stap – na tu long helpim long saeit long ol polisi long sait long ol meri.

Ms Horiwapu itok despla kaen wok painimaut oa sevei ino stap tasol long Solomon Islands, emi stap tu long ol narapla kantri long Wold.ABC

12) Vanuatu igat nupla Gavman

Updated 12 June 2015, 12:48 AEST
Sam Seke

Nupla Praim Minista Sato Kilam itok oli gat rait long ronim gavman

Odio: Niupela Finance na Economic Management Minista blong Vanuatu, Willie Jimmy i toktok wantem Sam Seke

Finance na Economic Management Minista long niupela gavman blong Praim Minista Sato Kilman long Vanuatu i tok, ol igat rait long senisim gavman long wanem ol igat namba long palamen.

Willie Jimmy husat ibin finance minista tu bipo itok, politik em i wok long namba na sapos ol i gat namba, ol iken senisim gavman wanem taim ol i laikim.

Mr Jimmy i tok olsem bihain long paleman blong Vanuatu i rausim Joe Natuman long wanpela mosen blong no-konfidens aste na voutim Sato Kilman olsem nioupela praim minista.

Tupla ten seven memba nau i sapotim mosen na tupla ten faif ibin agensim despla tingting.

Praim Minista bipo, Joe Natuman ibin rausim Sato Kilman husat ibin wok olsem foran minista long wik igo pinis.

Despla em nupla laen Kebinat blong Vanuatu.

Prime Minister: Sato Kilman Livtunvanu (People’s Progress Party)
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism: Moana Carcasses Kalosil (Greens)
Minister of Finance: Willie Jimmy Tapangararua, (Independent)
Minister of Internal Affairs: Hosea Nevu, (Iauko Group)
Minister of Foreign Affairs: Serge Vohor Raliuth (Union of Moderates)
Minister of Health: Morkin Steven Iatika (Union of Moderates)
Minister of Agriculture: Christopher Emelee (Vanuatu National Party)
Minister of Public Work: Tony Nari (Iauko Group)
Minister of Lands: Paul Telukluk (Reunification of Movement for Change)
Minister of Education: Alfred Carlot (Natatok)
Minister of Climate Change: Thomas Laken (Greens)
Minister of Youth and Sport: Toara Daniel Kalo (Greens)
Minister of Justice: Dunstan Hilton (People’s Progress Party)

Fainens minista Willy Jimmy itokim Radio Australia olsem oli gat rait long ronim gavman long wonem oli gat namba long Palaman.ABC


13) Groupe Mélanésien Fer de Lance : les indépendantistes papous soutenus au Vanuatu et aux Salomon

Mis à jour 11 June 2015, 17:14 AEST
Élodie Largenton
Dans deux semaines, les pays mélanésiens se réuniront à Honiara pour un nouveau sommet du Groupe Mélanésien Fer de Lance. Et ce que tout le monde attend, c’est de savoir s’ils vont décider d’accorder un siège aux indépendantistes papous, qui ont déposé une nouvelle candidature via la Fédération des mouvements indépendantistes papous.

Jusqu’à ce soir, ils pouvaient compter sur leur soutien traditionnel, le Vanuatu. Joe Natuman, qui était Premier ministre jusqu’à aujourd’hui, l’avait fait savoir haut et fort en limogeant la semaine dernière son ministre des Affaires étrangères, Sato Kilman, un peu trop proche de l’Indonésie à son goût. On écoute Kiery Manassah, le porte-parole du gouvernement vanuatais :
« Il y a plusieurs raisons qui ont poussé le Premier ministre à renvoyer Sato Kilman, mais l’une des raisons principales, c’est le point de vue qu’il a affiché sur la Papouasie occidentale et qui ne reflète pas la position du gouvernement. »
En avril dernier, l’ancien ministre des Affaires étrangères avait ainsi annoncé l’ouverture d’une ambassade vanuataise en Indonésie, avant que le désormais ancien Premier ministre ne démente l’information.
Ce soir, la donne a changé : Sato Kilman est le nouveau Premier ministre du Vanuatu. Il a été choisi par les députés pour remplacer Joe Natuman.
Aux Îles Salomon, plusieurs personnalités politiques ont fait savoir, ces derniers jours, qu’elles soutenaient la candidature des indépendantistes papous. Cela fait déjà trop longtemps qu’ils demandent à faire entendre leur voix, estime le dirigeant de la province centrale des Salomon, Selwyn Mapuli :
« Les habitants de Papouasie occidentale sont nos frères mélanésiens, qui luttent pour l’indépendance et le droit de faire ce qu’ils veulent au sein de leur pays. Ils ne peuvent pas se faire entendre, aujourd’hui. En tant que Mélanésien, je les soutiens dans ce contexte. »

Ces dernières semaines, cependant, Fidji et la Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée ont indiqué qu’ils préfèreraient voir l’Indonésie rejoindre le Groupe Mélanésien Fer de Lance en tant que membre associé. En 2011, grâce à la pression exercée par les Îles Fidji, l’Indonésie a obtenu le statut d’observateur au sein de l’organisation régionale.ABC

14) Brèves du Pacifique – vendredi 12 juin 2015

Mis à jour 12 June 2015, 18:08 AEST

Caroline Lafargue

Le jeu des chaises musicales continue au Vanuatu. À peine élu, le nouveau Premier ministre Sato Kilman fait face à une motion de défiance. 

Sato Kilman, le nouveau-futur-ex Premier ministre du Vanuatu? (Photo: Vladimir Pesnya / RIA Novosti) 
Jeudi après-midi, les députés ont fait tomber le gouvernement de Joe Natuman, grâce à une motion de censure. Sato Kilman, ancien ministre des Affaires étrangères du gouvernement Natuman, est devenu Premier ministre, élu par 27 des 52 députés. À peine 24 heures après son élection, Sato Kilman est la cible d’une nouvelle motion de défiance, déposée par 10 députés. Le vote aura lieu jeudi prochain. Le nouveau gouvernement est aussi fragilisé par un scandale de corruption, dans lequel la majorité des nouveaux ministres sont impliqués. L’affaire est instruite actuellement par la Cour Suprême.   

  • Mariannes du Nord: des chefs coutumiers s’opposent au Pentagone. Washington envisage d’installer des terrains de manoeuvres militaires sur Pagan et Tinian, pour y organiser des exercices de tirs à balles réelles. Les propriétaires coutumiers sont contre ce projet. Mais le gouverneur des Mariannes, Eloy Inos, affirme que le gouvernement américian a le pouvoir d’acquérir ces terres pour le Pentagone. Le gouverneur rencontrera les hauts-gradés américains d’ici la fin juin.
  • Nouvelle-Zélande: 22 000 candidats océaniens à la loterie nationale pour une carte de résident. Les noms des tirés au sort seront révélés aujourd’hui. Ce n’est que la première étape, car les heureux élus doivent d’abord trouver un travail avant de déménager en Nouvelle-Zélande. Le programme est ouvert au Samoa, à Kiribati, à Tonga, à Tuvalu, et à Fidji, pour la première fois depuis le réchauffement des relations diplomatiques entre les deux pays. Cette année, les Samoans ont été les plus nombreux, avec 9000 dossiers déposés, alors que le quota accordé par Wellington est de 1100 cartes de résidence pour les ressortissants samoans. ABC

15) Brèves du Pacifique – jeudi 11 juin 2015

Mis à jour 11 June 2015, 16:24 AEST
Élodie Largenton

Les fermes éoliennes sont « affreuses visuellement » et ont un « impact potentiel sur la santé », affirme le Premier ministre australien. 

Le gouvernement a l’intention de limiter au maximum le nombre de turbines, a précisé Tony Abbott. Il y a trois semaines, le pays a revu à la baisse son objectif concernant les énergies renouvelables : d’ici 2020, ce ne sont plus 41 000, mais 33 000 gigawatt-heure d’électricité qui devront être produits par l’éolien, le solaire ou l’hydraulique.
L’Australie a-t-elle payé les passeurs d’un bateau de migrants pour qu’il retourne en Indonésie ?Le capitaine et les membres d’équipage d’un bateau disent avoir reçu au moins 7 000 dollars chacun pour faire demi-tour. C’est faux, répond le ministre de l’Immigration, Peter Dutton, sans donner plus de précisions. 

  • L’ambassadeur australien en Indonésie est de nouveau en poste, cinq semaines après l’exécution des trafiquants de drogue australiens Andrew Chan et Myuran Sukumaran. C’est le « bon moment », estime Tony Abbott. « On pense que ces exécutions étaient inutiles, mais on a toujours dit qu’il n’était pas question que cela ait des répercussions sur ce qui est pour nous une relation très importante », précise le Premier ministre. Le rappel de l’ambassadeur est la principale mesure qui avait été prise par le gouvernement australien pour signifier sa colère vis-à-vis de l’Indonésie.
  • À Fidji, les 23 propositions de drapeaux retenues par les autorités ne séduisent pas la population, selon un reportage du Fiji Times. « Je ne vois aucun symbole qui représente Fidji en particulier », regrette un habitant de Lautoka. Un autre trouve que les dessins sont « ternes », surtout comparé à l’actuel drapeau. Les Fidjiens sont invités à voter pour leur emblème préféré jusqu’à la fin du mois.
  • Les espoirs Onusiens des Îles Cook douchés par la Nouvelle-Zélande. Henry Puna, le Premier ministre de l’archipel polynésien, voudrait obtenir plus d’autonomie, que son pays puisse avoir un siège à l’Onu et à la Banque mondiale, notamment, mais en gardant la citoyenneté néo-zélandaise. Il en a discuté directement avec son homologue néo-zélandais, John Key, cette semaine, et la réponse est sans appel : la Nouvelle-Zélande n’a pas l’intention de changer quoi que ce soit au statut actuel. Les Îles Cook sont en libre association avec la Nouvelle-Zélande depuis 50 ans.
  • Les dirigeants du Pacifique approuvent un plan ambitieux pour mettre fin à l’épidémie de Sida d’ici 2030. Pour y arriver, les pays de la région Asie-Pacifique devront franchir plusieurs étapes, et notamment faire baisser le nombre de nouvelles infections de 350 000 en 2013 à 79 000 en 2020. Il faut améliorer l’accès aux dépistages et aux traitements, préconise l’Onu. Dans notre région, c’est en Papouasie-Nouvelle-Guinée qu’il y a la plus de cas de séropositivité.
  • Les opérations de vote se sont déroulées dans de bonnes conditions à Bougainville, assure le commissaire électoral, George Manu. Candidat malheureux à la présidentielle, Sam Kauona affirme que des faux bulletins ont été placés dans les urnes. C’est impossible, répond George Manu, qui souligne que l’élection était supervisée par des observateurs internationaux.
  • Les images font le tour du monde : un bébé koala, qui enlace tendrement sa mère, blessée après avoir été renversée par une voiture. Les animaux ont été recueillis par les soigneurs d’un zoo situé près de Brisbane, en Australie. La maman koala a été opérée avec succès. Elle est maintenant en rééducation et, évidemment, son petit reste près d’elle.ABC

16) Du changement à la tête du Vanuatu

Mis à jour 11 June 2015, 17:51 AEST
Élodie Largenton

Le Vanuatu a un nouveau Premier ministre : Sato Kilman. Il remplace Joe Natuman, renversé par une motion de défiance, votée par 27 députés sur 52.

Sato Kilman a déjà exercé les fonctions de Premier ministre par le passé. (Credit: Reuters)
Jusqu’à la semaine dernière, les deux hommes travaillaient ensemble, dans le même gouvernement : Sato Kilman était ministre des Affaires étrangères. Mais Joe Natuman avait décidé de le limoger pour deux raisons principales : d’une part, il savait qu’une motion de défiance était dans l’air et il avait appris que son ministre la soutiendrait, et d’autre part, ils avaient des points de vue différents sur la question papoue.
Sato Kilman est réputé pour être proche de l’Indonésie, quand Joe Natuman soutient les indépendantistes papous. Le décalage avait été particulièrement flagrant en avril dernier : alors ministre des Affaires étrangères, Sato Kilman avait annoncé l’ouverture d’une ambassade en Indonésie. Il avait été désavoué dès le lendemain par le Premier ministre : « Cette orientation politique n’est pas à l’ordre du jour. On a des problèmes plus urgents à traiter, comme l’après-cyclone Pam », avait indiqué Joe Natuman dans un communiqué.

Aujourd’hui, la donne a donc changé : un pro-Indonésie prend le pouvoir à la place d’un pro-indépendantistes papous. Or, le Groupe mélanésien Fer de lance se réunit dans moins de deux semaines aux Îles Salomon pour discuter de la candidature de la Fédération des mouvements indépendantistes papous.

Ce changement de Premier ministre est le neuvième en sept ans au Vanuatu.ABC

17) ACP calls EU’s EPA deferral unacceptable

13 June 2015

The organisation of African, Carribean and Pacific countries says the European Union’s decision to defer negotiations for an Economic Partnership Agreement unacceptable.

The EU last month proposed a three year deferral after negotiations for the region-wide deal reached a stalemate after 11 years of discussions.

But the Fiji Times reports the ACP’s secretary-general, Dr Patrick Gomes, saying the deferral was unrealistic, and the he hopes to resolve it next week at a joint ACP-EU parliamentary assembly.

Mr Gomes says such an agreement would be important to the ACP’s economic goals in terms of investment and financing to move their developing countries forward.RNZI

18) Tuvalu irked by big power fishing stance

12 June 2015

Tuvalu’s fisheries minister Pita Elisala says his nation is not selling fishing days to distant water fishing countries that have blocked initiatives to develop its domestic fishery.

Mr Elisala was speaking during the two-day Parties to the Nauru Agreement annual meeting of ministers in the Federated States of Micronesia.

Last month, PNA officials wrote to fisheries officials in Japan and Taiwan and to the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation requesting meetings to resolve what PNA CEO Dr. Transform Aqorau described this week as an embargo against island domestic development.

Mr Elisala, who did not name what countries were preventing fisheries developments in Tuvalu, says Tuvalu is concerned with the way these nations had treated them and is therefore refusing to sell them fishing days.

He says this could have negative repercussions for Tuvalu as it depends on donor aid from these same countries.

Dr Aqorau says Tuvalu and the Marshall Islands have attempted to get purse seiners from Taiwan, but these efforts have been prevented.RNZI

Britain re-looks at foreign policy – British Prime Minister David Cameron is refreshing his approach to foreign policy to define Britain’s place in the world. Cameron, recently re-elected to office for another term, is looking at building stronger ties with Fiji and the Pacific. British High Commissioner to Fiji Roderick Drummond says they are looking at ways to effectively maintain its presence in the Pacific including Fiji.


19) Hackers access sensitive data

Sunday, June 14, 2015

WASHINGTON – Hackers with suspected links to China appear to have accessed sensitive data on US intelligence and military personnel, American officials say.

Details of a major hack emerged last week, but officials have now given details of a potential second breach.

It is feared that the attack could leave US security personnel or their families open to blackmail.

The agency involved, the Office of Personnel Management, is yet to comment on the reports.

Officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity to the Associated Press news agency, believe the attackers have targeted the forms submitted by intelligence and military personnel for security clearances.

The document includes personal information, everything from eye colour, to financial history, to past substance abuse, as well as contact detaiils for the individual’s friends and relatives.



Healthcare, Honiara, International Annual Events/Days, People, Solomon Islands, Top Headlines
June 14, 2015

National Medical Laboratory Director Alfred Dofai speaking to the media as Acting Manager of the hospital blood bank Donald Tahani, speaking to the media. Photo credit: SIBC.

The Ministry of Health and Medical Services and its partners will commemorate World Blood Donor Day in Honiara tomorrow.

World Blood Donor Day is annually commemorated on June 14th.

This year’s theme is “Thank you for saving my life”.

Director of the country’s National Medical Laboratory, Alfred Dofai told a media conference over the weekend they will acknowledge a small group of faithful voluntary blood donors in the country during tomorrow’s event.

“During that event we will say thank you to those who keep on donating, a small group of people who keeps on donating blood to save our people’s lives in the hospital, so we would like to say thank you very to them for their service of free blood donation. Now we only encourage voluntary blood donation and not paid donations.”

Meanwhile, Blood Donor Recruitment officer of the Solomon Islands Red Cross, Kelton Sikala encouraged the public to attend the World Blood Donor Day celebrations tomorrow.

“We will have a day’s program and so we appeal to the public to come and enjoy the program and also support those who voluntarily donate blood, so come and be present at the program. There will be activities involved which will help us to understand the importance of blood and why we want to promote voluntary blood donation.”

SIBC News understands tomorrow’s program will be held at the SMI area, Town Ground, West Honiara.

However, speaking in today’s radio talk-back show at the national broadcaster, Medical Lab Acting Manager Donald Tahani says there is dire need for more blood at the National Referral Hospital.

“It’s just too low, it’s way below the calculations from our statistics records. Our records have shown that I’ll give you an example blood needed is around 8,000-9,000 units per year, that’s the average we’ve calculated for the last three years period, from 2011 to 2013. Yet our supply is just around 2,000-2,500, so you could see that big difference.”SIBC

21) Call for people to give blood

Luke Rawalai
Sunday, June 14, 2015

MINISTRY of Health acting permanent secretary Dr Mecuisela Tuicakau has called on the people of Fiji to givea pint of blood and help save lives.

Officiating at the launch of the World Blood Donor Day in Wainikoro outside Labasa yesterday, Dr Tuicakau said the ministry had set up blood banks in hospitals after recognising the importance of blood availability to members of the public.

Dr Tuicakau said blood was needed for life threatening conditions, surgeries, maternal and prenatal care including the treatment of major injuries.

“The World Blood Donor Day was established in 2004,” he said.

“The ministry and medical services have always taken its services down to rural areas so that individuals raise awareness to people in these areas.

“Last year the event was launched in Ba and Korolevu in 2013 before coming to the North for the second time this year.”

Dr Tuicakau saluted donors around the country saying their donations had saved the lives of many.

“The theme for this year’s program is ‘Thank You for Saving My Life’ but the question that we need to ask ourselves is have we saved a life today and have we contributed to the lives of others?

“This is a responsibility that we owe to the people that are in need for blood and not the work of the ministry alone.

“We continue to encourage people on the need to donate and give blood for the sake of those that need it out there.”

Meanwhile, the World Health Organization website says about 108 million blood donations are made around the world every year.

Out of this, 65 per cent of blood transfusions in low-income countries are given to children under five years.Fijitimes


22) Seven off to pilot school

The National, Friday June 12th, 2015

Flight instructor Captain Bruce Paki will be taking his third batch of students for pilot training at Elite Global Aviation in the Philippines.
Paki, who is the vice-president of the company, hosted a farewell for seven trainees, their parents and guardians in Port Moresby last Sunday.
Paki said the seven trainees would be joining 18 students currently training at that pilot school.
Student Pele Pokeya’s father Korowa Pokeya was happy that his son was part of the team that would be trained by Elite.
Pokeya spoke on behalf of other parents and encouraged trainees travelling to Subic on Sunday.
Pokeya was happy with the way Elite Global Aviation was dealing with the students.
“As young people, you go out there and you will be expose to so many things but make it your business to get your priorities right and bring back the pride for yourself, your family and the country,” he said.


23) Unsuccessful Bougainville candidates look to legal action

13 June 2015

Reports from Bougainville say that many losing candidates in the recent election are now talking to their lawyers in a bid to overturn the election results.

New Dawn FM says the seats being disputed include the presidential seat, which was won by the incumbent John Momis, as well as several other general, women’s and ex-combatant seats.

The Bougainville-based radio station says it has received various statements from failed candidates claiming foul play during voting and counting.

However, the acting electoral commissioner, George Manu, has previously said he is satisfied with the way the election has been conducted, saying any interference would have been noticed by international observers.RNZI

Solomons Opposition Questions Slow Implementation Of Budget
Manele concerned government won’t have time to deliver services

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, June 12, 2015) – The Leader of Opposition Jeremiah Manele has questioned the Government as to why the implementation of the ‘People’s Budget’ has been very slow.

With only five months left before the end of the 2015 financial year, MrManele said people are waiting for the much needed services to be delivered.

“After all it is called the People’s Budget and the Government needs to make it known to the people why the budget delivery has been so slow,” Mr Manele said.

He cautioned the Government that they could end up not achieving much because of trying to do too much in a given time frame.

The Leader of Opposition reiterated a statement he made during his Budget Speech in April this year that the most serious challenge to the execution of the 2015 budget is time.

“As I have mentioned in Parliament, and is likely to be the case right now that the time frame for implementation of the budget is simply too short. Obviously, we are yet to start expending the budget and with only five months left to execute the budget, this is simply inadequate,” he said.

In addition, Mr Manele said the Government is currently faced with another dilemma and that is some of the Government ministries do not have the capacity to effectively implement the 2015 budget within the 5 months’ time frame left for this year.

“Their recurrent budgets are not linked or are simply inadequate in terms of their manpower establishment to support the implementation of the programmes or projects in their development budgets or to enhance their ability to collect additional revenue,” he said.

As such, the Leader of Opposition has called on the Government to tell this nation how and when the Government will roll out their work programs and start expending the budget.

“Our people are waiting. The budget is in their name so let us ensure that much needed services are delivered to them, especially the majority of our people in the rural areas. The Government has a huge task ahead and so many promises to fulfill and it must not fail its people.”

Meanwhile, the Leader of Opposition has also voiced serious concerns over the uncontrolled and frequent oversea trips by Ministers and officials.

He questioned the relevance of the trips, calling on the Government to explain how these trips will benefit the people of this country especially when people are still waiting for the much needed services to be delivered to them.

“How can the Government explain the uncontrolled trips and how does it relate to the implementation of a budget that is yet to be implemented,” he said.

Solomon Star


Development, Malaita, People, Provincial Governments, Solomon Islands, Top Headlines
June 14, 2015

The people of North Malaita have described the initiative taken by the Malaita Provincial Government to develop Malaita Province as “timely”.

The North Malaita constituents said developing the province will provide more employment opportunities for its people.

SIBC’s Mbita’ama stringer, John Andrew Kiri reports people are willing to support the provincial government in its development plans.

“Such positive initiatives that the provincial government through Premier Peter Chanel Ramohia’s leadership, once coming to fruition, will discourage Malaita to go looking for employment in other parts of the country or anywhere else but encourage Malaitans to remain at home and work hard to develop Malaita as their home province.”SIBC

25) Solomons Green figure advocates balance in development

12 June 2015

The interim president of the Green Party of Solomon Islands says striking the right balance between economic development and protecting the natural environment is essential for developing countries.

Ernest Kolly is one of two Solomon Islands delegates attending the 3rd Congress of the Asia Pacific Greens Confederation running through the weekend in Wellington.

Climate change is top of the agenda at the congress which has drawn delegates from as far away as Iraq, Pakistan and Mongolia, to representatives from India, Indonesia, Australia, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand.

Ernest Kolly says Solomon Islands, as a developing country faced with climate change, has its own balance to strike in terms of development.

“We try to preserve our environment, on the other hand we also need economic development and so the government of the day is promoting more of the tourism industry in investing more in tourism instead of logging developments, etc.”RNZI

26) 24 hours into job, Vanuatu PM faces no-confidence vote

By Online Editor
00:19 am GMT+12, 12/06/2015, Vanuatu

Vanuatu’s opposition has filed a motion of no-confidence in the Prime Minister, Sato Kilman, less than 24 hours after he came to power in a no-confidence vote.

The notice, signed by 10 MPs, has been lodged with parliament’s speaker and will be debated next Thursday.

The opposition says Kilman’s appointment should be terminated and a new prime minister appointed, citing the devastation caused by cyclone Pam.

It says the effect of losing cyclone reconstruction programmes, which were put together by the previous government of Joe Natuman, outweighs a change in government as the confidence of donor partners will be affected.

It also argues that with the majority of the new government implicated in a bribery case currently before the Supreme Court, the government will be forced to interfere in the judicial process.

The motion will need the support of 27 MPs for it to be successful.


27) New Bougainville cabinet takes shape – The re-elected Autonomous Bougainville Government President, John Momis, has announced part of his caretaker cabinet. Dawn FM reports that in a brief ceremony at the ABG House of Representatives, President Momis announced that Patrick Nisira would continue as vice President of the autonomous Papua New Guinea region. He also presented the new member for Peit, Josephine Getsi, who is the first woman to be elected a member of parliament in an open seat, as his caretaker government’s choice of women’s representative.

28) Consultations to begin on Development Plan – The government is about to set off on a national exercise to collect views for a five year development plan which will form the basis of all government policies and strategies in the years to come. Permanent Secretary for Finance and National Planning Filimone Waqabaca says country wide consultations will be held so that the plan encompasses the views of as many Fijians as possible. “It will articulate what government intends to do during the 5 year period. Whether it’s building how many roads, hospitals, electricity, water – those type of development issues.”

29) Acting PM explains symbolism behind the 23 Flag designs
 – The Fiji blue represents peace and serenity and the dark blue stands for prosperity, trust and dignity. Acting Prime Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum shed some light on the concepts for the 23 shortlisted flag designs. “The Fiji blue, was you can see is a very strong presence which provides the continuity and many people are very endeared to the Fiji blue as we call it or the noble banner blue as on our flag, it represents peace, serenity, freedom as well as of course the Pacific Oceans and it shows solidarity with all other island nation states. Yellow represents radiance, light, sustenance and a new beginning, it recalls the Sun, Fiji’s place as the land of the first rising sun. Dark blue stands for peace, prosperity, trust, dignity and intelligence.”


30) Vanua to install chiefs

Vuniwaqa Bola-Bari
Sunday, June 14, 2015

INSTALLING chiefs is not the work of the iTaukei Lands Commission, says commission chairman Ratu Vananalagi Vesikula.

Ratu Vananalagi made the comment at Buretu Village during the iTaukei Affairs roadshow on Friday night while responding to a question from village headman Saula Ikanivecevece.

Mr Ikanivecevece inquired if there was any time frame given for vacant positions in villages to be filled.

To this Ratu Vananalagi said there was no time frame because Government respected traditional protocols.

He said the filling of positions, be it of chiefly status or head of clans or tribes is the responsibility of the vanua and not for the ministry to decide.

“You can only ask us for advice if you’re not clear about anything with regards to vacant positions but Government does not have the power to decide when to have these positions filled,” Ratu Vananalagi told the villagers.

He has also urged indigenous Fijians to talk among themselves and decide on filling the vacant titles and positions.  Fijitimes


31) Solomon Airlines starts Sydney flights

2 June 2015

Solomon Airlines has started its weekly service to Sydney, flying out of Honiara on a Monday and returning on Tuesday.

The carrier’s commercial services manager says the launch is slightly early and he would have liked to have had more time for sales teams to promote the service.

Gus Kraus says flights are running at 40-50 percent capacity but he is hoping this will improve as more people become aware of the service.

“We are working with a company called Ignite in Australia. They are part of the group that actually developed My Fiji and My Bali and My Phuket type campaigns. So we are spending some real hard earned funds into the Australian market to give that tourism a push.”

Mr Kraus says most Solomon Airlines passengers to and from Australia are travellers on business or visiting family members.RNZI


Australia, Business, Government, Investment, People, Programmes, Solomon Islands, Top Headlines
June 14, 2015
Some of the locals who will participate in the business forum. Photo credit: Australian High Commission in Honiara.

The seventh Australia-Solomon Islands Business Forum is on track to start tomorrow.

The Australian High Commission office in Honiara said this is the first time the bilateral business event will be held in Solomon Islands.

The Forum will bring together over 100 players in the trade and investment relationship between Australia and Solomon Islands.

Australian High Commissioner Andrew Byrne said hosting the Forum in Honiara for the first time marks an exciting new chapter for the Solomon Islands private sector.

He said this represents a vote of confidence from the business community in the future of Solomon Islands.

Commissioner Byrne adds it will also provide an opportunity for leaders and policy-makers to interact directly with potential investors from both countries.

He said the Australian Government stands firmly by the Solomon Islands Government and Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry as they strive to boost economic growth across the country.

Meanwhile, Solomon Islands 2014 Businesswoman of the year and Managing Director of Premier Group of Companies, Julie Haro said this year’s Forum is an opportunity to form new business partnerships with Australian investors.

She said the Forum is about building new connections that will enhance development and improve the quality of our service delivery to customers.

She adds the Forum will have ripple effects in our economy as well as for our people.

The two-day Forum is hosted by the Australia-Pacific Business Council and will feature expert presentations on the current political, economic and investment climate in Solomon Islands.SIBC

33) Konrote meets ILO Director General – Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Jioji Konrote has met with Guy Ryder – the Director-General of the International Labour Organisation in Geneva, Switzerland. The Minister expressed his appreciation for the support and assistance given by the ILO to Fiji, especially in relation to tripartite relations in Fiji and legal support. The Minister says there’s optimism that the consultations on labour law reforms will be fruitful and positive.

34) New water bottling facility in Ra 
– An American company is investing close to a $140m in a new water bottling facility in Ra. The project has been five years in the making and with final approvals the construction is expected to begin later this year. 480 Holdings Limited is the newest entrant in Fiji’s thriving bottled water sector and director – Bob Bishop says their factory is expected to start producing and exporting towards the end of 2017.

45) Policy vital for SMEs

Geraldine Panapasa
Saturday, June 13, 2015

THE Fijian trade policy framework identifies the development of small and micro enterprises (SMEs) as a vital component to the Fijian industrialisation process, says Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism Faiyaz Koya.

He said the overall policy for trade and related activities recommended a holistic review of the SME policy framework.

“Access to marketing information remains a constraint to SME development and competitiveness in Fiji,” he said during the recent launch of the SME promotions and sales centre under the National Centre for Small and Micro Enterprises Development.

“This marketplace is highly competitive with speed and change integral to general policy and today’s customers expect more features and new updates of existing products on a regular basis.

“Hence an interactive website will be introduced soon that will form a vital part of this promotion and sales centre, and further boost the SME connectivity to the local market and all over the world.”

Mr Koya said market knowledge also helped SME develop a competitive edge and advantage through increased customer knowledge and demand.

He said enterprises could take a strong position in the market, adding the centre would address some of those gaps.

“In the coming months, Government will channel more than $1million to assist SMEs. This initiative is targeted at grassroots community and individuals with special skill set such as handicraft, carpentry and small-scale farmers. The grant facility will provide the start-up capital to existing SMEs of up to about $1000 each.”

NCSMED acting CEO Ravi Chand said they continued to carry out their mandate since 2002 to support, promote and build the capacity of SMEs in Fiji.

He said NCSMED had developed and orchestrated an array of business support resources and services to accelerate the successful development of businesses.Fijitimes


36) New four-lane back road for city

The National, Friday June 12th, 2015

The China Habour Engineering Company Ltd is building a new four-lane back road from  Gerehu Stage one to 9-Mile in Port Moresby at a cost of K300,000.
The company’s public relations manager Pexcy Rodney said the project was awarded to the company by the National Capital District Commission.
He said the project would be completed by the end of next year.
“It’s a 78-week project and a very complicated one because we are building the road through swampy areas and mountains,” Rodney said.
“People residing at the back of Waigani, Morata and 8-Mile will have access to the road once it’s completed.
“This road will help reduce traffic in the city.”
The project will open up employment opportunities for locals.
Project manager Yuan Huiming said reaching the community through awareness was one of the ways of maintaining a good relationship with them.
The construction of the road is part of a decision made by the
Cabinet recently for six major road projects.
The road projects when completed are expected to make it easier for those living in city suburbs to commute, as well as ease traffic problems for the city.
Other road projects includes:  Gerehu to Hanuabada; Gordon Industrial Roads Stage 2; Kookaburra Road flyover at the Erima Junction; Erima to 9-Mile; and Morea Tobo Road.

37) Finally, clean water for villagers

The National, Friday June 12th, 2015

WATER in a basic human need and everyone should have access to a clean and reliable supply, Huon Gulf MP Ross Seymour says.
Seymour was at Irom in the Bumbu headwaters on Wednesday to see the opening of 20 water taps, showers and 15 latrines.
The project was completed within three months by the Environmental Health Development Agency, a non-governmental organisation led by Boas Sengi.
Morobe Governor Kelly Naru, who resides at Irom, worked with the agency through the AusAID programme Strongim Pipol Strongim Nesin to have the facilities built for K77,000.
Seymour said apart from cooking, washing and drinking, water was important for health and hygiene.
Council presidents Koim Trilue Leahy (Lae), Michael Poane (Wampar), Andrew Gena (Wantoat) Esonuc (Nabak) and Sam Agi (Ahi) accompanied Seymour.
Seymour told villagers in Wombon, Irom and Omaru that essential services such as roads would be provided.
“It is the people’s money that the Government allocates to be used for community projects,” he said.
“I am just the custodian ensuring essential that services are distributed equally and fairly to people in the district.”
About 800 people reside in the borders of Huon Gulf, Lae and Nawaeband have been neglected over the years because they do not know which local council or district they come under.
Community leader Andrew Talapi requested for a Elementary School to be built there and a clinic to cater for children and women.
They also want Seymour to help their activities in poultry, cocoa and taro farming.


38) Bank exposes State fraud

The National, Friday June 12th, 2015

A BANK has revealed that it stopped about K130 million in fraudulent payments from the Government system in the past 18 months, through the effective use of its check and balance system.
Bank South Pacific general manager paramount banking Aho Baliki told the Finance Department’s annual provincial and district treasurers’ conference in Lae yesterday that K70 million in fraudulent payments were detected and stopped last year, and a further K60 million was stopped up to the end of last month.
Baliki, who heads the division which handles all Government accounts with the bank, said an effective check and balance system enabled the detection and prevention of the theft of large sums of public funds.
Baliki made the revelation to illustrate the effectiveness of BSP’s cheque clearance process which requires presentation of payment confirmation letters when making cheque deposits into business and private accounts, and verification of signatures of payees, and the availability of funds.
Baliki said this was done in conjunction with the Bank of PNG which was using the Kina Automated Transaction System (KATS) to clear Government cheques.
“BSP is privileged to be a partner with Government in delivering banking and financial services to the people of PNG but we must be always on guard against opportunists out there waiting to take advantage,” Baliki said.
He said later while the frauds were detected and stopped, there were no arrests made because it was difficult to pin down the perpetrators.
Finance Secretary Dr Ken Ngangan told The National last night that the immediate plan was to strengthen KATS by making sure all Government cheques deposited were scanned and the cross-checking system “kicks in”.
He said only 17 of the 30 government departments were using the Integrated Financial Management System.
Meanwhile, provincial treasurers from the Momase region also told the conference that for far too long, the department and other line agencies had ignored them. They called for teamwork because of the introduction of the District Development Authority.
East Sepik provincial treasurer Simon Tomba said it was now “a treasurer versus chief executive officer (DDA) situation”.
“With the DDA coming on board, how are we going to be looked after?” Tomba said.
Morobe provincial treasurer Uriah Soten said the Government must fast-track the establishment of the district supplies and tenders board.
Madang provincial treasurer Paul Amera said there was a need for “regular inspections of projects and training for treasury staff”.

 39) Concern over Kanak artefacts up for auction

2 June 2015
Questions are being raised in New Caledonia about old Kanak artefacts due to be auctioned in Switzerland next week.

The newspaper, Les Nouvelles caledoniennes, says the items appear to be the same as the ones identified in press reports in 1974 as having been taken out of the territory illegally.

The artefacts were suspected to have been stolen and shipped out in a container by a collector at the time.

The newspaper says the government is aware of the issue and considering its options before Wednesday’s auction in Basel.RNZI

40) Joint operation to Save Lives – Authorities will conduct a special joint operation to crackdown on traffic offenders because of the high number of offenses recorded in recent months. The joint operation by the police force, Land Transport Authority and municipal councils will begin nation-wide tomorrow. LTA Chief Executive Officer – Naisa Tuinaceva says the traffic infringements range from speeding to driving vehicles with defects to driving under the influence of alcohol.

41) National security is everyone’s concern: Teleni – National security is everyone’s responsibility and should be inclusive. And the national security review committee is concerned the increasing access to internet sites will influence minds in Fiji. Chairman for National Security Review Committee, Esala Teleni say global terrorism is impacting the world and Fijians should be aware of the increase in emerging new security threats.

42) CAAF investigates plane incident in Yasawa – An incident involving an Islander aeroplane in the Yasawas is being investigated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji. The plane which was manned by two pilots experienced an issue with the nose wheel on the take roll causing the aircraft to veer to the side and the wing tip to contact a bure post.

43) Nine accused appear in High Court – Eight police officers and a soldier charged for allegedly killing Vilikesa Soko have had their reporting conditions changed after appearing in the Lautoka High Court yesterday. Manasa Talala, Seruvi Caqusau, Kelevi Sewatu, Penaia Drauna, Filise Vere, Viliame Vereivalu, Jona Davonu, Pita Matairavula and Senitiki Natakasavu will now report on the last Saturday of every month to their nearest police station. All nine men appeared in court with their lawyer asking for fourteen days to prepare for trial.—#sthash.cQl03yF6.dpuf

44) Women to appear in court for harboring escaped prisoner – Two women are expected to be produced at the Lautoka Magistrates Court today charged with one count each of harboring an escaped prisoner. The two were arrested along with two escapees in Bukuya earlier this week. Meanwhile the two escapees alleged to have robbed a 44 year old before stealing a vehicle remain in custody. The victim of the robbery remains admitted at the Lautoka Hospital.

45) Ban on public flogging in Fiji welcomed

12 June 2015

New bylaws being introduced in Fiji to combat public flogging in some iTaukei villages have been welcomed by the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre.

The centre’s coordinator, Shamima Ali, says the bylaws were introduced in the colonial era to allow village chiefs to preserve customs and traditions.

But she says some remote villages have exploited the bylaws, and have taken to public flogging as a way to restrict women’s rights.

“What has happened is that people have taken the law into their own hands, so to speak, and have expanded the laws to include restrictions on women’s dressing et cetera.”

Ms Ali says although the practice is not common and does not have government sanction, it’s good to see the government tackling down on it.RNZI


46) Landowners Of PNG Gas Project Frustrated With Lack Of Payment
LNG exports have yet to produce royalty benefits for Hela people

By Andrew Alphonse

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, June 12, 2015) – After more than 6 million tones of shipments to date, landowners as custodians of the multi-billion kina PNG LNG project, still have not received their equity and royalty benefits. As a result, both upstream and downstream landowners along the 700 kilometers LNG pipeline corridor route between Hides gas conditioning plant sites in Hela province, to the liquification and storage facility at Papa Lealea outside Port Moresby are impatient and frustrated.

In Port Moresby yesterday, under the blistering heat, Boera villagers of Portion 152 near Papa Lealea LNG storage facility, expressed their frustration at the delay tactics employed by government agencies, the Department of Petroleum and Energy (DPE) and Mineral Resources Development Company (MRDC) in expediting their LNG benefits. Mr Muri Henao, chairman of the Boera village clan heads, flanked by Ula Avei (Iduata Gubarea 3 2 clan), Gomara Ganiga (Tubumaga clan), Rei Honokae (Nenehi clan), Mrs Lucy Alesa (president of Boera women’s association) and Mr Moi Miria (Iduata SInalai clan) said they have completed all the requirements as per the oil and gas act (O&GA) to receive their benefits but they are confused and forever waiting when they will be paid.

“They promised us that as soon as we export the first LNG cargo, we (landowners) will get our benefits.

“More than 100 LNG cargoes have now being exported and where is our royalty and equity payments ?” Mr Henao said.

Mr Henao said one prerequisite to obtain their benefits is the clan vetting and land owner identification exercise which they completed successfully in Nov 2014 witnessed by DPE officials. Mr Henao said they supported the moves last week by frustrated Moran landowners in Hela to shut down the Moran oil head project for the same reason, non- payment of outstanding LNG benefits. Mr Henao said his 4000 petroleum processing facility landowners (PPFL) from Boera villagers that includes 10 stock clans and four sub-clans are now ‘confused and frustrated’ as nearly every week, they frequent the DPE and MRDC offices in Port Moresby, only to be given the ‘forever and endless wait’ response. MRDC managing director Augustine Mano last month said MRDC needed a formula and that is the clan vetting and land landowner identification exercise, before they make the payments, adding that it is DPE’s responsibility to facilitate these exercises. Mr Mano said currently, no payments had being made and the benefits are still held in trust.

PNG Post-Courier

47) Fiji sugar a hot commodity in South Korea – Fiji sugar is now being sold in South Korea and already is a hot commodity says the Chairman of Paradise Bio Sugar Lee Hon Gyu. PBS is exporting Fiji’s raw sugar to South Korea under a special arrangement with the Fiji Sugar Corporation. The company hopes to finalize in the near future a permanent arrangement for bulk sugar export. Le says while they’re still undertaking marketing and securing further deals with retailers, major food processing and cosmetic companies, the consumer base and sales are growing exponentially every month


48) Fiji’s Usamate says child labour needs to be eradicated

13 June 2015

Over 173 cases of child labour have been recorded in Fiji over the last 4 years.

FBC reports this was highlighted by the acting Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Jone Usamate while opening the World Day against Child Labour in Suva on Friday.

Mr Usamate says it is everybody’s business to try and eradicate child labor in Fiji, and that child labour is not only found in businesses but also in our homes.

He says there are instances in our homes and communities where children have had to stay home and miss school to tend to family commitments such crop harvesting or looking after younger siblings.

He says this means children miss out on school, and don’t get the development they need.RNZI


49) Government provides funding towards Team Fiji for the Pacific Games

By Online Editor
00:27 am GMT+12, 12/06/2015, Fiji

The Fijian Government Thursday presented its second cheque of $300,000 to FASANOC, to assist in Team Fiji’s costs for the Pacific Games next month.

Team Fiji needs around 2 point 1 million dollars to send our teams across to Papua New Guinea.

FASANOC President Joe Rodan senior welcomed the continued assistance from Government towards Team Fiji.

The timely injection helps reduce the burden on catering for the athletes who will be travelling to the Pacific Games.

“We always grateful to the Government for donating and helping out FASANOC, as you know sports plays a very important part in our country. The Fiji Team of 423 that’s going over to the games. Majority of them are students and majority of them are youth and it’ll be a good exposure for them,” said Joe Rodan (SNR) – FASANOC President

Out of the 2 point 1 million dollars budget, Government has contributed $600,000 of that money and now leaves a shortfall of $100,000.

The departure tax alone for Team Fiji is more than 89 thousand dollars and Rodan is expected to meet with the Prime Minister in this regard.

“The third is supposed to be $700,000, hopefully you know we will get a little bit more or in that case if you look at the departure tax, for 423 people amounts to about $81,000, we hope we can get some leeway in that area,” he said.

However, Government cannot do this alone and they’re calling on business houses to have a heart and contribute towards a good cause.

“We need the support from our business houses, there are a number out there that have not come on board with any sports, we’d like to sort of say well, you can turn off your TV’s when we showing 7’s and when we showing PNG because you haven’t put anything into it,” said Peter Mazey – Chairman – Fiji Sports Council

Mazey has called on the National Federations to have proper plans in place to avoid last minute requests for assistance.

“We’ve got to stop this leisure planning which we do, all at the last minute, one month before we’re going. That’s why we’re planning development in sports now for four years,” he said.


50) Strongest ever weightlifting field for Pacific Games

13 June 2015

The strongest weightlifting field in Pacific Games history will be on show in Papua New Guinea next month.

The Pacific Games event in Port Moresby is being held in conjunction with the Oceania Weightlifting Championships for the first time.

Among the lifters on show will be Glasgow Commonwealth Games gold medallists Dika Toua and Steven Kari from Papua New Guinea, and David Katoatau from Kiribati.

Samoa, Fiji and Nauru will also have Commonwealth medallists on show, as well as New Zealand and Australia, who are competing in the Pacific Games for the first time.

The General Secretary of the Oceania and Commonwealth Weightlifting Federations, Paul Coffa, says that’s helped to boost the entry numbers.

“We have 21 countries with about 260 lifters competing. That’s quite a large number really – the biggest entries we’ve ever had in this sport in the pacific – and of course the [fact it is a] Rio qualification event has a lot to do with it, and we expect some excellent results.”

American Samoa, the Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Guam, the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, New Caledonia, Niue, Norfolk Island, Samoa, Palau, the Solomon Islands, Tahiti, Tonga, Tuvalu, Tokelau, and Wallis and Futuna are the other competing countries aside from the CNMI and host Papua New Guinea.

A 32-member delegation, including 25 athletes, will banner the Northern Marianas’ medal hopes to next month’s XV Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea.

Our correspondent says the CNMI will be competing in eight of the 28 sports offered in the Pacific Games, namely, athletics, beach volleyball, bodybuilding, golf, sailing, swimming, triathlon, and va’a or outrigger canoe.RNZI

51) Pacific Games places up for grabs Fiji

13 June 2015

Pacific Games spots are on the line for the Fiji Olympic football team, who are competing in the inaugural Four Nation’s Friendship Cup in Port Vila from this afternoon.

The Fiji Under 23 team is using the tournament as preparation for next month’s Games in Port Moresby, which doubles as the Oceania qualifying tournament for the Rio Olympics.

New Caledonia, Solomon Islands and hosts Vanuatu are the other participating teams.

Fiji coach Juan Carlos Buzzetti says players involved in their Under 20 World Cup campaign are being rested for the Vanuatu trip so it’s a chance for the others to stake a claim.

“Some of the Under 20s will join us after and we need to make decisions so for the boys it’s performance time. We want to see how they perform at this level: some of them have a lot of experience [and] some of them they don’t but they’re playing very well in this moment. It just is a question to see, identify how many players we want to select from this group and bring the Under 20s and see which ones of them will make it.”

In today’s first round of matches, New Caledonia take on Vanuatu and Fiji face Solomon Islands.RNZI

52) FIFA U-20 World Cup: Germany out of competition

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Update: 4:53PM FAVOURITES Germany has been bundled out of the FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.

The European side was locked 1-1 at full time against Mali in the quarter-final today and the match went into extra time and the dreaded penalty kicks.

Mali came out victorious 4-3 on penalties, sending Germany out of the World Cup.

In the other quarter-final, Brazil defeated Portugal 3-1 on penalties after the two sides ended the match nil-all.

USA plays Serbia while Uzbekistan takes on Senegal in the other quarterfinals in New Zealand today.Fijitimes

53) Naitasiri reigns in rugby battle

Vishaal Kumar
Sunday, June 14, 2015

NAITAISIRI has ended Namosi’s unbeaten run in the Skipper Cup competition after beating them 22-19 in a close match at Ratu Cakobau Park in Nausori yesterday.

Both teams demonstrated high attacking rugby from one end to the other in wet conditions but it was Naitaisiri who kept their nerves to hold on for a win with Namosi looking to snatch a comeback victory late in the game after trailing 22-7 midway in the second half.

Naitaisiri opened the scoring through lock Temo Raibevu in the fifth minute with Kini Douglas converting for a 7-0 lead. Douglas then slotted a penalty to extend the lead 10-0.

It took Namosi until the 26th minute to register their first points with Timoci Sinate scoring after a well worked team try from their own half. Mesa Taicirua adding the extras to cut the lead to 10-7.

But just as Namosi thought they held the upper hand, Naitaisiri scored again through Sireli Kaloucava to extend the lead 17-7 with Douglas again nailing the conversion.

To make matters worse Namosi were reduced to fourteen men after Abele Yalayalatabua was shown a yellow card for dangerous play.

Naitaisiri led 17-7 at halftime.

Poor handling errors plagued Namosi in the second half and frustration started to creep into their game as they were further reduced to thirteen men following scrum half Etuate Nete’s yellow card. A scrum in Namosi’s twenty two allowed Viliame Masiwawa to score from the next play increasing Naitaisiri’s lead to 22-7 before Leikima Naredra being sin binned for a professional foul.

This sparked the Namosi side into action scoring twice through Pita Tamanivalu and Rusiate Tadulala in a space of 10 minutes but it was too little too late for as Naitaisiri held on to win.

Naitaisiri coach Joji Rinakama said the side was lucky to come away with the points.

“The win is a win but there were still careless mistakes made by the boys which allowed Namosi to come back,” Rinakama said.

“We had prepared well for the game knowing Namosi was a tough team to beat.

“We still have to work on our weaknesses and still there is room for improvement.”

Namosi coach Jim Wainiqolo said his side lost to a better side.

“Naitaisiri won today because they were the better side. We made too many errors in the first half which led us to play catch up rugby,” Wainiqolo said.Fijitimes


Why the Pacific islands are no gay paradise

Why the Pacific islands are no gay paradise

 14 May 2014
by Dr Paula Gerber

The United Nations recently invited people to imagine what it would be like if you were not free to be you. If the only sexual orientation you were allowed to express was a heterosexual one.

For people in 80 countries around the world, this requires no imagination, because it is their day-to-day reality . That is why IDAHOT – the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia – is so important.

Much of the recent media coverage of the persecution of LGBTI people has focused on Russia due to its hosting of the Sochi winter Olympics, and African countries such as Uganda and Nigeria because of their passing of anti-homosexuality legislation that imposed harsher penalties for LGBTI “crimes” and created even more offences, including “aggravated homosexuality”.

One region that has received very little media coverage when it comes to LGBTI issues is the Pacific. There are nine Pacific countries that still criminalise homosexuality. And LGBTI individuals in many of these countries are regularly subjected to homophobia, discrimination and persecution.

For example, in Papua New Guinea, gay sexual activity is punishable by up to 14 years imprisonment. Although this is rarely enforced, the Government recently indicated to the UN Human Rights Council that it would not repeal the offensive laws. Classifying homosexuality as a crime, even if it is not strictly enforced, has a chilling effect on LGBTI communities, for it signals to them that they are not tolerated by society and can still be arrested at any time. It forces gay men to live in fear and remain closeted.

One local gay activist observed that “Men who have sex with men or who are transgendered tend to be ‘hidden’ by being married and hiding behind their wives, ‘laplaps’ or their own beards. It is very complicated and disclosure of sexuality is not recommended”.

This forced non-disclosure, may be one of the reasons why PNG has one of the highest rates of HIV infections in the world, with two per cent of the adult population being HIV positive. If PNG refuses to decriminalise homosexuality on the grounds that it is a breach of human rights, then it should consider doing so as a means of improving health.

Opposition leader, Dame Carol Kidu, has called for such action, noting that criminalising homosexuality drives same-sex acts ‘underground’ and encourages risky behaviour, and to decriminalise homosexuality will help to reduce the HIV rate, which will benefit the entire country.

The Solomon Islands is another Pacific country that criminalises homosexuality and has deeply entrenched homophobia. In 2008, the Law Reform Commission proposed removing criminal sanctions for homosexuality, but the plan did not proceed after fierce public objection. One opponent of the reform stated that “Legalizing gay and lesbian in the country would only encourage the breed of more,” and the Solomon Islands is a “long time Christian country” that should never think of legalising gay sex.

After this failed attempt at reform in the Solomon Islands, change seems far away. Indeed, churches from as far away as Nigeria are sending pastors to many countries in the Pacific, including the Solomon Islands, in an attempt to spread their anti-LGBTI ideology across the region.

There are unlikely to be advances in LGBTI rights in the Pacific until such time as homosexuality is no longer classified as a crime. Vanuatu and Fiji have shown leadership in the region through their decriminalization of same-sex conduct in 2007 and 2010, respectively.

Since then Fiji has hosted an LGBTI themed short film festival and become only the second country in the world to include a constitutional prohibition on discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression (the other country being South Africa).

LGBTI Fijians still face discrimination, including the police, in 2012, cancelling a permit for the first ever Pride march which had been organized for IDAHO. But at least they no longer live in fear of being arrested just for being gay.

In some Pacific nations, there are signs reform may not be too far away. Palau, Nauru and the Cook Islands, all told the UN Human Rights Council, in 2011, that they are willing to repeal their laws that criminalize homosexuality (although this has not yet happened).

However, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, the Solomon Islands and Tonga have all indicated exactly the opposite; that they have no intention of decriminalizing. Nevertheless, a commitment to the decriminalization of homosexuality by three Pacific countries suggests reform is beginning in this region.

Dr Paula Gerber is an Associate Professor at Monash University Law School and Deputy Director of the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law.

This article was first published in the Gay Star News.