Subject: LUSA: Gusmao Seeks Financial Support for Campaign

18 Mar 02 12:53 East Timor: Gusmao Seeks Financial Support for Campaign

On the third day of campaigning for April 14 presidential elections in East Timor, frontrunner candidate Xanana Gusmao is seeking financial support for his campaign.

An advertisement appeared in Monday`s edition of the daily ´Suara Timor Lorosae`. The "call for the getting of funds" was made in English, Portuguese and Bahasa Indonesia. Contributions to the campaign of Kay Rala Xanana Gusmao could be deposited at a bank in Dili, the announcement said. Surplus funds will be given to charity.

The advertisement was signed by the coordinator of the National Independent Commission (CIN), the body running Gusmao`s campaign.

The head of Gusmao`s campaign, Milena Pires, told Lusa the election budget would be calculated "in the coming days".

Also to be finalized is Gusmao`s scedule of campaign trips around Timor, which begins after March 24, according to Pires.

The head of Gusmao`s drive for the presidency also said the campaign was late in gathering momentum because of delays due to initial inclusion of party logos on ballot papers. Gusmao had threatened to stand down over this issue, but the affair was resolved last week by the Independent Electoral Commission.

Separately, Gusmao`s only rival in the presidential race, Francisco Xavier do Amaral, was admitted to hospital Saturday and remains under observation.

Xavier do Amaral, leader of the ASDT party, was admitted to the National Hospital in Dili with high blood pressure and "the onset of pneumonia" after having been feverish for two days.

An ASDT spokesman said the electioneering would continue at local level with "other party members" standing in for the indisposed leader. A rally is scheduled for Tuesday in Timor`s second city, Bacau.

CJB/ASP -Lusa-

© 1997 Lusa Comentários e Sugestões para Agência Lusa

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