Subject: UNOTIL's Daily Media Review January 5, 2006

[Poster's note: Long repeats of international articles already sent out to the east-timor list (info@etan.org) have been removed.]

UNOTIL

Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review

Thursday, 05 January 2006

National Media Reports

President Gusmão: No easy process in Eurico Guterres' visit to Timor-Leste

President Xanana Gusmao has said that there is no easy process for facilitating the impending visit of ex-militia Commander Eurico Guterres to Timor-Leste. Speaking at a press conference at the Timor-Leste Consulate in Kupang on Wednesday, and accompanied by the NTT Governor Piet Tallo, the President said that the visit will require planning. Commenting on the importance of the Kupang Consulate, the President said that it is essential for the two countries to have a mechanism for dialogue, and the Consulate will provide such a mechanism as it is on the ground. He also said that although the Timor-Leste refugees in West Timor are no longer considered refugees, the door is still open for them to return home. (TP)

NMP urges Government to clarify Bayu Undan revenue

The National Mobilization Party (NMP) has urged the government to clarify to the people the revenue from the Bayu Undan oil field, with the reasoning that as this money belongs to the people, it is their right to know how much is coming in. Speaking to TP on Tuesday, NMP President Alberto Pires said that the amount of petroleum income for between December 2004 and August 2005 is as yet unclear. He requested that the President be the one to clarify this, as he has the final authority to answer to the Timorese people. (TP)

George Soros: Transparent Society Institute to be established in Timor-Leste

A branch of the Transparent Society Institute, a US organization headed by George Soros, will open in Timor-Leste, in order to monitor the implementation of the Petroleum Fund Law. Commenting on the petroleum issue, Soros told journalists on Wednesday before returning to the US that Timor-Leste's petroleum fund law is advantageous for the future of the country, as it establishes a transparent culture with a quarterly reporting system. He emphasized the importance of civil society control over the petroleum income, and he commented on the value of Oil Watch's involvement in the issue also. During his stay in Timor-Leste, Soros met with the Prime Minister, the Foreign Minister, Minister of State, President of the National Parliament, government officials and members of civil society. (STL)

24 ASDT militants arrested

Twenty-four members of Timorese Democratic Social Association party were arrested in Liquica on January 3rd in relation to robbery and stability and security disturbance. The vice president of ASDT, Feliciano Fatima Alves confirmed the arrest but questioned the police's reason behind the arrest of 24 members. MP Alves stated that it is impossible to accuse a group of 24 people of planning a robbery. It could be that the members act in such a manner on an individual basis but not as a group. Meantime, it was also reported that the President of ASDT, Francisco Xavier Amaral has written a letter to the coordinator of ASDT in Liquica asking for further clarification on the incident. MP Alves added that if the arrest is being played to lower the credibility of ASDT, then a letter of protest would be sent to PNTL. It was also reported that PNTL and the office of the Prosecutor-General are urged to conduct a balanced and accurate investigation. (STL, TP)

MP Gomes: The need to strengthen public communication

MP Pedro Gomes of Commission G of the National Parliament has suggested to the government to expand the national public broadcasting (RTTL) as the population in the districts still does not have access to communication through this infrastructure. "I think the government must increase the budget to the national public broadcasting in order for it to function better. Whenever we travel to the districts, the population in the majority of the districts lamented regarding public broadcasting and they ask the government to expand the radio and television network to the districts in order for them to follow developments in the country," said Gomes. He rejects the argument by the director of RTTL that the reason the radio and television is not working in the districts is due to electricity problems, adding that "I think this argument does not have a fundamental base, if the population still does not have access to information through the television because of electricity, it can be accepted but not the radio. Even in some districts where electricity operates properly, people have no access to information via the radio". The MP is of the opinion that RTTL should enter into an agreement with Timor Telecom to use the towers scattered throughout the country for broadcasting, noting that RTTL management neither has proper planning nor a program to develop public broadcasting therefore leaving people in isolation. Pedro Gomes said that according to information he received, Timor Telecom is willing to cooperate with RTTL. (STL)

China has strong interest to invest in Timor-Leste

Timor-Leste Ambassador to China, Olimpio Branco said China is interested in investing in Timor-Leste. "During my time in China, I've spoken to many Chinese entrepreneurs and they have shown interest in investing in Timor-Leste in order to achieve the development of this nation," Branco said, adding that most importantly Timor-Leste must have a secure stability. Branco also told the media that he is looking into scholarships for Timorese to study in China, as it is important to have Timorese to be proficient in languages such as Chinese, Japanese and Korean. (STL)

Gusmão: 2005 Projects lack quality due to lack of transparency in the Finance Ministry

Parliament Member, Fernando Diaz Gusmão told media yesterday that most of the projects that were carried out in 2005 lack quality due by fault of the Finance Ministry. He added that it was due to lack of control over the projects' qualities because of lack of transparency. MP Gusmão argued that if the projects lacked quality, it would translate into corruptions starting from processing tenders until implementation. (TP)

TVTL News Monitoring 04-01-2006

More than 100 doctors assigned to Sub-Districts: More than 100 Cuban doctors, who arrived in Timor-Leste a few days ago, were dispatched to over 60 sub-districts. Speaking at a ceremony before the departure of the doctors to the sub-districts, Prime Minister Alkatiri reportedly states that the presence of the Cuban doctors was to help in reducing infant mortality rates as well as to combat diseases such as malaria, dengue and TB. Alkatiri also appealed to all the District Health Directors to extend their full support and cooperation. Meanwhile, the Cuban Ambassador was quoted as saying that his Government has pledged to provide 400 doctors to Timor-Leste, 180 of whom are currently in the country and the other 220 will arrive in the near future.

ASDT requests for an independent investigation: Reacting to the news of 24 arrests to ASDT's militants in Liquica recently, the Vice-President of ASDT party, Feliciano Fatima MP stated that the party has not received any official reports from the party leadership in the District. He added that his party will summon the local ASDT leaders in Liquica for confirmation. Speaking to journalists at the National Parliament on Wednesday, Mr. Fatima MP said that there needs to be an independent inquiry into the arrests to find out the truth about the charges laid against those arrested.

Viqueque insists access to RTTL: Meanwhile, speaking at the National Parliament, the MP from Viqueque District, Joaquim dos Santos stated that the people of Viqueque are insisting for access to information on the National Development through radio and television broadcasts. In response to the concerns, the General Director of RTTL, Virgilio Guterres told journalists that RTTL has planned to provide access through to the Districts but that they still face some technical problems.

National News Sources Timor Post (TP) Radio Timor-Leste (RTL) Suara Timor Lorosae (STL) Diario Tempo (DT) Diario Nacional Seminario Lia Foun (LF) Televisaun Timor-Leste [TVTL]

These Items Do Not Reflect the Position or Views of the United Nations. UNOTIL Public Information Office

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