Subject: UNOTIL's Daily Media Review 11-13 March 2006


Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review

Saturday & Monday, 11-13 March 2006

National Media Reports

Expulsion of Soldiers Will Create Problems: Riak Leman

PSD MP Riak Leman has said that F-FDTL's plans to expel 400 soldiers at once is not a good move because it will set a bad precedent in terms of future recruitment of soldiers. Responding to the news that the more than 400 soldiers who have refused to return to their barracks after their February protest will be expelled from the F-FDTL, Leman stated that if they are indeed expelled, future candidates for the F-FDTL who are from the West of the country may decide not to join, based on this precedent. He said that the case is not one of indiscipline, for which expulsion could be considered necessary, but that this is a much bigger issue that should be resolved properly.

Political and economic observer Aristides Afonso has criticized President Xanana's handling of the issue, saying that he has erred in trying to handle the issue from a philosophical point of view. "I very much respect President Xanana, however, if he really did have an interest in resolving the case, then it would not have been blown out as it has", stated Afonso to TP last Friday. He stated that in his opinion, the President should identify who was the instigator of the action, and who were just the followers. He said that these followers could then be ordered to re-join the institution, so that the case could be resolved.

In an interview with DN, Coordinator of the CPD-RDTL Antonio "Aitahan Matak" has stated that the more than 400 soldiers who have not yet returned to their barracks have violated the discipline expected of military personnel. He explained that as soldiers who belong to a military institution, whether the leader is an imperialist, capitalist, a socialist or a communist, the military institution has rules that must be followed. "If a soldier leaves his post for even one hour when he has been ordered to remain, then he has violated the discipline required of him", according to Matak. (TP, DN, STL)

Two Bishops to be Government Advisors if PD Wins Election

If the Democratic Party wins the 2007 elections, they will recruit the two Timor-Leste Bishops, Alberto Ricardo of Dili and Basilio do Nascimento of Baucau, to be Government Advisors, Vice-Secretary-General of the Democratic Party Francisco Berlaku told party followers during a mini Congress in Aileu on Saturday. He stated that PD looks on the Timor-Leste church as a development partner for Timor-Leste's future. In his speech, Berlaku touched on some aspects of PD's program planning which will be discussed at their National Congress, including a focus on democracy, the economy, agriculture, health and education. (TP)

UNDP Report Shows Government Lacks Capacity

Aristides Afonso, an economic lecturer at the National University, said indications by UNDP Human Report that poverty has increased in Timor-Leste, shows that the Government does not yet have the capacity to better the lives and development here. Afonso says that the Government must be open to all ideas and welcome all investment. He pointed out that when people invest a lot of money in this country they also want benefits and security for their money in the future. He added that whether the Government does or doesn't have the capacity depends on which aspects one looks at and in considering some of them, it has the capacity to proceed, but in terms of economic development of the nation, he said the Government is lacking. Aristides Afonso said it could also be either lack of capacity or interest to carry the nation forward, pointing out that members of the Government are more interested in their personal business and trying to gain control rather than developing the economy of Timor-Leste. He said that to reduce poverty, conditions must be created for economic political changes, noting that the world is evolving and if Timor-Leste cannot adjust and adapt to the development process it will forever be poor. Afonso says there's a yearly increment in the Government budget for development but the money is not used at all because the projects do not create conditions for employment opportunities. He added that whenever the budget increases, it should favor the living conditions of the people and the development process. (TP)

UN: TL One Step Forward

Timor Post reported Saturday that following the launch of UNDP Human Development Report for Timor-Leste, SRSG Hasegawa told the media that in the upcoming Presidential and Parliamentary elections, parties must have credible plans to reduce poverty and establish a sustainable development plan for the nation. " The political leaders cannot disregard the wishes of the people to choose who they want. In reality, they must not only provide freedom but create better living conditions and develop human resources," Hasegawa reportedly said. He also said that the presence of the United Nations in Timor-Leste is important to secure that the first election is free, peaceful and fair and is really committed, as a member of the UN, of putting in the effort to build a democratic society.

Leave Fretilin If Wants Development: Menezes

Partido Democratico spokesperson, Rui Menezes, appealed to the people of Timor-Leste to quit Fretilin if they want a better life and development. "Before, the people won the war against the Indonesian military because they left Fretilin and joined the organisation Resistance CNRT (National Council of Timorese Resistance). Now if the people want to have a better life and development in this nation, once more they have to decide to leave Fretilin," Menezes said. He added that the people have put their faith in Fretilin to govern Timor-Leste but in the last four years the people still have not seen any development. (STL)

Fretilin Has Big Responsibility For The Nation: Alkatiri

Secretary-General of Fretilin, Mari Alkatiri reportedly said that having a big party means those selected to lead it must be conscious and have a clear perspective to carry it forwards. Speaking at the opening of Oecussi District conference on the weekend, he reminded participants that the role of the leadership during the war is finished and those selected must be the correct people for the appropriate time, adding that a good commander during the war doesn't necessarily mean a good minister or qualified to become the President or the Secretary-General of a party. Alkatiri added that a large party has the responsibility to strengthen peace, stability and democracy for the nation. Oecussi was the last leg of district conferences in preparation for the national congress scheduled in Dili for mid-May.

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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