Subject: UNMIT Daily Media Review - 16 May 2008

[Poster's note: International and other articles already sent out to the east-timor list ( have been removed from below.]


(International news reports and extracts from national media. UNMIT does not vouch for the accuracy of these reports)

ASDT withdraws its coalition with Fretilin – Suara Timor Lorrosa'e, Diario Nacional, Timor Post and Televisaun Timor-Leste

Five ASDT MPs are asking the president of the party, Francisco Xavier do Amaral, to end the coalition with Fretilin, as they want to give AMP two years to correct the errors they have made in government.

"We will still support the AMP's Government and still give them time to correct themselves. The time given to AMP is intended to help improve people's lives. If this doesn't happen, then ASDT will find a solution to the problem.

The coalition with Fretilin is not going to be implemented in the short term," said an ASDT MP José Carrascalão on Thursday (15/5) in the National Parliament, Dili.

Mr. Carrascalão said that if the accord signed with Fretilin is implemented in the short term then it will not give stability to the nation but have a negative impact on people's lives.

The Vice President of Fretilin Arsenio Bano made no comment on ASDT's withdrawal, as Fretilin still does not know the reasons for the action.

UNDERTIM to get post in the Government – Timor Post

After UNDERTIM decided to join AMP on Tuesday (13/5), the President of the Alliance Majority in Parliament (AMP) said that AMP will prepare a post of State Secretary to be given to UNDERTIM.

According to Lasama, UNDERTIM is a candidate for the position as the party has entered AMP''s block.

The President UNDERTIM Cornelio Gama said that his party will delegate his Secretary-General to take any post offered by the AMP government.

"We will put our Secretary-General on the post as needed by the Government.

We support AMP because we still consider Xanana as our resistance leader who led us during the struggle," said Mr. Gama on Thursday (15/5) in the National Parliament, Dili.

The Vice President of Fretilin Arsenio Bano said that even though UNDERTIM joined AMP, this does not guarantee that the AMP Government will be clear of corruption, collusion and nepotism. Fretilin is still considering options to force an early election.

"Fretilin is not concerned with their alliance. They are going to strengthen corruption, collusion and nepotism. Many people will see whether things are right or wrong," said Mr. Bano.

Mr. Bano said that there will be early election if the corruption, collusion and nepotism are still rampant.

Lucia Lobato: don't be in a hurry to pardon Rogerio – TTimor Post

Minister of Justice Lucia Lobato will present a legal opinion to President Jose Ramos-Horta, asking him not to be in a hurry to pardon former Minister of Interior Rogerio Tiago Lobato as the prisoner is not in Timor-Leste at the present time.

Minister Lobato said that based on the Constitution, the president has the authority to grant pardons to prisoners who have been ordered by the Court to serve their full sentences. Whether the prisoners are in the country or outside of the country is an important consideration.

"I think the President may give a pardon to Rogerio when he returns to Timor-Leste. If not, this will be a big controversy among the public," said Minister Lobato on Thursday (15/5).

Increasing local food production: FAO to support MAF – Timor Post <

At an UNMIT press briefing held in Obrigado Barracks on Wednesday (14/5), the Chief of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Chana Opaskornkul said that FAO will support the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery (MAF) to increase local food production in Timor-Leste.

"We will make good seed available and planting material and fertilizer available for roughly 30,000 families. We think by this measure we will encourage people to plant a second crop and we will increase the food production by around 30,000 metric tonnes of food production in the country.

And, we also try to provide the storage capacity to farmer and it is very important because of the post harvest losses which are huge, roughly around 30 percent of food is destroyed during the storage.

For the long term perspective, the Prime Minister mentioned at the rice ceremony last Saturday (9/5) in Maliana that he wouldn't say that Timor-Leste could not buy more rice from the outside. He would say that we have increased production and we will support to buy the product in the country in the next few years time," said Mr Opaskornkul.

FAO working with the government to support it in buying local products as one of the way of stimulating food production by local farmers.

Gertrudes Moniz-Arsenio Bano: the case of February 11 is still a mystery – Diario Nacional

PD MP Gertrudes Moniz and Fretilin MP Arsenio Bano stated that the case of the attacks on PR Ramos-Horta and PM Xanana Gusmão on February 11 is a mystery as the government and the judiciary have still not identified the actors of the referred case.

"The National Parliament has approved a resolution to establish an independent commission of inquiry, but has not yet established it. Many alleged people have been arrested but the truth has not yet been revealed.

The Prosecutor-General made many political comments while working on the investigation. Is the General-Prosecutor working for the interests of the people or someone else? Is he working for politics or justice?

The President of Republic, a victim of the attacks of February 11, has given his statement, but how about the Prime Minister? In connection with cases from 2006, some leaders have been called to make statements, such as PR Ramos-Horta, Mari Alkatiri, Brigadier General Taur Matan Ruak, and Colonel Lere Anan Timur. They all have given their statements in the court. Has Prime Minister Xanana Gusmão as the previous president given his statement or not?," asked Mr. Bano on Thursday (15/5) in the National Parliament, Dili.

Ed: Veterans saving each other …!!! – Diario Nacional

UNDERTIM's joining of AMP is the subject of discussion subject of the leaders in and out of the National Parliament. It has created positive and negative reaction. Some say that UNDERTIM is joining the AMP in order to obtain a position in the government.

The Vice president of UNDERTIM said that UNDERTIM is joining the AMP to save the people and bring development to them.

It is true that the recent government has started to solve the problems of the IDPs and the petitioners, as well as other problems facing the nation.

Is UNDERTIM joining AMP because ASDT made coalition with Fretilin to bring down the government? If it is to save the government, why do they need the post offered?

UNDERTIM may give various reasons that the recent government could develop the people and the nation. But the public analysis may show that UNDERTIM is entering AMP to save Xanana, not AMP, because Xanana is a veteran, their big brother. They do not want a government ruled by a veteran which falls down half way through its elected term of office. We wait …


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