Subject: UNOTIL Daily Media Review 5 April 20


Compiled by the Public Information Office from national and international sources

Daily Media Review Wednesday, 05 April 2006

National Media Reports

Donor’s Meeting + WB Acknowledges Changes

The donor’s meeting concluded on Tuesday with continued commitment for the development of Timor-Leste, the media reported today. Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri reportedly said that donor partners have praised his Government and called to establish a mechanism to execute the state budget that will benefit development. Alkatiri stressed that the advisory role is still important and Timor-Leste still requires technical assistance to accelerate the work. “According to the national strategic development plans, the Government has achieved many things and the partners have also agreed with the new plans to decrease poverty, Prime Minister Alkatiri said. The Prime Minister underscored that the Government really wants to resolve the problem of poverty as soon as possible and move to the development phase.

In the meantime, World Bank Country Director, Xhun Xian reportedly said Timor-Leste has achieved a lot in the private sector and the World Bank will continue to assist the Government in the areas of poverty reduction and infrastructure development. According to STL, the World Bank welcomed the Government’s plans to increase the budget for the Office of the Provedor and Public Broadcasting Services as it is crucial for good governance.

In a separate article, Diario Nacional reported MP Rui Menezes (PD) as saying that many donor partners are not committed to their pledges due to the Government’s performance results which are insufficient and do not meet their objectives.

The budget for the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forest increased by almost 100 percent, Minister of Agriculture Estanislau da Silva told the media Tuesday. (TP, STL, DN, WB)

Government Dialogue With Church A Political Joke: Fr. Martinho

Father Martinho reportedly said that the recent request by Prime Minister Alkatiri through the Foreign Affairs Minister to Baucau Bishop on how the State can coordinate and assist the church in areas like education would not be possible in the short term. Martinho noted that the two Dioceses, Baucau and Dili, do not have on their agenda a meeting with Prime Minister Alkatiri due to busy schedules. He added that many there are many aspects involved and the context must be debated before holding the dialogue. Fr. Martinho noted that for agreement on the dialogue, the bishops, the nuns and the priests have stressed that they do not want to see church taken as a joke. “It’s different from before when we all fought together. In the end it’s been denied. But now that the situation is starting to go into crisis, there are talks of being together again. This is political joke,’ Martinho said.

MP Lucia Lobato (PSD) said the proposed effort of the Prime Minister through Minister Ramos-Horta is a promise which began sometime ago and has not yet materialized. She noted the agreement signed by the Government, the Church and the President last April following the demonstration but there has been no follow up. “These promises are only to keep us quiet, but in reality they are nothing. Nothing is realized in this country,” Lucia Lobato said. Lobato fully agrees with the government’s plans to strengthen ties between the two institutions (church and government) as the relationship has worsened since Government officials made statements that the church should not be involved in politics. (TP, DN)

Leadership Crisis Within F-FDTL: President Gusmao

President Xanana Gusmão says the country's military leadership is in crisis. His comments follow the desertion of 591 soldiers in February. The troops, who were protesting against alleged nepotism and poor conditions, were later sacked. Mr Gusmão has told a conference of foreign donors in Dili that the military is faced with a "lack of capacity to manage the problems properly. I appeal to everyone not to become alarmed if I say that a crisis exists," he said. Mr Gusmão has vowed to solve the problem.

In a separate article Lieutenant Colonel, Salsinha Gastão said the National Parliament has just awakened to the dismissal of the soldiers after almost two months. According to Gastao, they have all supported Brigadier General Ruak’s decision and he questions whether their concern is to resolve the problem or mere politics. He is of the opinion that the Parliament should be able to resolve the issue and not let it sit for too long, adding trauma to the population in Dili. Salsinha Gastao said the decision by Brigadier General Ruak to dismiss them executed on television and not in writing and therefore they still considered themselves military. He rejects the statement by Minister of Interior Rogerio Lobato who said that the group wants to burn their uniforms to create instability, adding that if they wanted to create instability, the town of Dili would be destroyed by now. The Lieutenant General said his group doesn’t want discrimination within the F-FDTL, noting that it is not they who are responsible for instability but the F-FDTL themselves who want to create instability. Gastao said the meeting the group held with youth groups was to calm them and not to create instability due to their discontentment with General Ruak’s decision as well as statements that people from the West did not participate in the struggle. In a separate article, Prime Minister Alkatiri said the group should stop dreaming that they are still military just because they are still wearing the military uniform. Alkatiri also asked what the group really wanted, since they do not want to resolve the problem. He said that the decision is made and that’s final. (ABC, TP)

UNOTIL Mission Would Be Changed to UNSPO

Timor-Leste’s Ambassador to the United Nations, José Luis Guterres, reportedly said that he believes the international community will continue to provide assistance to the Government of Timor-Leste. Guterres also said that the United Nations mission will end on May 20 but that the UN will continue its presence in the country with a special political office to be called United Nations Special Political Office, UNSPO. He says that with the continued presence of the UN, the international community will be committed to assisting Timor-Leste in conducting the elections and that the population should believe in their commitment. (DN)

Intellectual Groups Creating Division And Disturbances

MP Jacinto Maia (Fretilin) on Tuesday accused the Forum Intelektual (Intellectual) who made a statement on Diario Nacional on the weekend saying the group is creating division disturbances to the situation because it only has representatives from 10 districts. Maia said the other 3 districts-- Viqueque, Baucau and Lospalos-- are not represented in the Forum. He added that this clearly shows the divisionism. The MP is of the opinion that since it is a Forum composed of intellectuals it should encompass representatives from all the districts and embrace everybody. He said the group should also be able to sit and discuss problems and try to come up with solutions. (DN)

RTTL News 04/04/06

Comments on the donors meeting

The President of National Parliament, Francisco Guterres “Lu-Olo” after attending the Donors’ Conference told journalists that the donors were convinced by the report of Prime Minister on Development in Timor Leste and hence he believed they would continue their support. Also, Jose Luis Guterres, the Timorese Ambassador of the UN said the conference was a good opportunity for Timor-Leste to demonstrate its need for assistance to the donor countries and to explain the real situation. Meanwhile, Manuel Tilman, from KOTA, reportedly praised the Prime Minister’s speech but added that it did not reflect the whole reality of TL, particularly in the rural areas. The Brazilian Ambassador pledged his country’s continued support.

UNDERTIM held press conference

Speaking at a press conference in Becusi, Dili, the Vice President of UNDERTIM, Jose Galucho reportedly appealed to all his party followers not to believe the rumours going around the country about a shadow Government structure. According to the pamphlets found in Dili, all the Government Ministries are occupied by the people of Lorosae. Mr Galucho rejected the rumours saying it is the work of those who want to split this country. Meanwhile the spokesperson of UNAQMERTIL, Reis Cadalac, also condemned the rumours as divisionist propaganda.

UNPAZ and UKSW signed Agreement cooperation

Universidade da Paz and Universitas Kristen Satya Wacana, from Indonesia, signed an agreement of cooperation on Tuesday, RTTL reported. Speaking to journalists after the signing ceremony, the Rector of UNPAZ said agreement covers cooperation in establishing postgraduate programs at UNPAZ, in lecturer and student exchanges and joint research programs.

Population handover ammunition to PNTL in Baucau

A farmer of Baucau District has reportedly handed over some ammunition to the District police. He found the ammunitions in the forest nearby while collecting firewood. Speaking to journalists, PNTL District Commander, Pedro da Costa said that he suspected the ammunitions were lost by someone while transporting them, but that the ammo is now in police hands.

Regional Media Reports

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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