Subject: east timor headlines/23July2001

Bahasa Indonesia Headlines ­ Monday 23 July 2001

1. PSD’s turn to rock Dili 
2. Bankruptcy looms over Electricity Board 
3. Antonio Aitahan Matak: Leaders must not go back on their promises 
4. Joao Carrascalao: Timor Lorosae flag must be determined in a referendum

1. PSD’s turn to rock Dili (Suara Timor Lorosae, front page headline)

It was the Socialist Democrat Party’s (PSD) turn to rock Dili, a week after Fretilin launched its campaign, with its national candidates.

PSD’s campaign was launched at the GMT (Rising Sun indoor Stadium) in Dili. The new party, formed on 20 September last year, is under the leadership of Mario Carrascalao.

Also present at the launch were Mario’s children: Pedro Carrascalao ­ the ex-husband of Indonesian movie star Sarah Azhari ­ and movie star Sonia Dora Carrascalao. Several national artists, like Anito “Kasmaut” Matos, were also with the PSD candidates.

Mid-term development programs formed the core of PSD issues. The candidates stressed the importance of developing farming, forestry, plantations and the livestock industry.

Mario Carrascalao said these sectors were important to the country because 90 per cent of Timor Lorosae people depended on agriculture for their livelihood.

Mario Carrascalao also said the PSD will concentrate on developing farming, production and distribution cooperatives. Farmers, he said, will also have access to credit facilities if the PSD came into power after the 30 August elections.

2. Bankruptcy looms over Electricity Board (Suara Timor Lorosae, front page second lead)

The ETTA Cabinet had to, late last week, take emergency decisions to address electricity supply issues in the 13 districts. The Electricity Board is on the verge of bankruptcy because UNTAET’s funds for the purchase of diesel to run generators and equipment replacement parts are fast running out.

The Director General of ETTA’s Infrastructure Department, Ian Hook said this on Friday at a press conference.

He said UNTAET is currently spending US$20 million a year to keep up electricity generation for the 13 districts. He said in the 2000/2001 budget, only US$12 million had been allocated for power.

“There is a shortfall of about US$8 million and UNTAET is finding it very difficult to meet the difference,” said Hook.

Not having any choice, said Hook, UNTAET has to make consumers pay for electricity usage.

According to Hook, consumers in the 13 districts will be billed from 1 July but payments will be made from August and September.

Hook said there were 18,000 consumers in Dili and out of that number 80 per cent had meters and the other 20 per cent did not.

“Those 20 per cent will be helped to install meters,” said Hook.

3. Antonio Aitahan Matak: Leaders must not go back on their promises (Suara Timor Lorosae, front page third lead)

Coordinator of Democratic Republic of Timor Leste (RDTL) Antonio Aitahan Matak urged political leaders not to make empty promises to the people. He said they had to fulfill their promises to bring the people out of their present sufferings.

“Don’t make promises just for the campaign and then forget them later. Political leaders must make sure that within 10 or 20 years poverty and illiteracy will be eradicated in this country,” said Aitahan Matak in an interview with STL.

Aitahan Matak said there was a pool of highly-skilled people in the country, in various disciplines, and they help alleviate poverty and illetracy.

On democracy, the RDTL leader said the system should support the setting up of many political parties.

When asked why RDTL did not participate in the 30 August election organized by the UN, he said: ”The United Nations must first acknowledge that independence was proclaimed on 28 November 1975 before giving a chance for the establishment of political parties.”

“The Timorese people know they are already independent but the United Nations does not want to acknowledge it.”

4. Joao Carrascalao: Timor Lorosae flag must be determined in a referendum (Suara Timor Lorosae, page 2 second lead)

The Timor Lorosae flag is a symbol of the people and only the people will have a say on it. This was stated by Joao Carrascalao, the president of the Uni Demokrat Timor party (UDT).

He was answering a question posed by a Timor Post reporter at the “Political Parties Meet the Press Day” organized by the Timor Lorosae Journalists Association.

“The flag of the country cannot be determined by one party. The only way it can be done is through a referendum involving the people,” said Joao Carrascalao when answering a question on why Fretilin was defending the RDTL flag as a national symbol.

“The people must have a choice to determine a symbol that will be theirs,” he added.

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