Govt soft to take action to corruptors: CarrascalãoRadio Televisaun Timor Leste , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Carrascalão meets with President HortaRadio Televisaun Timor Leste , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Ruak informs Horta about FALINTIL Day preparationsSuara Timor Loro Sa’e , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
It is great disaster if the Govt withdraw more than 3% from petroleumSuara Timor Loro Sa’e , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Police has discovered suspect of money goes missingTimor Post , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Current chief of villages threaten not to return back Govt’s motorbikeTimor Post , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
The Govt is weak in negotiation: AlkatiriTimor Post , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
MP David Ximenes not agree with new recruitment for PNTL officersTimor Post , 30 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Australia's 'boomerang aid' slammed
By Claudette Werden for Radio Australia
Posted Wed Jul 29, 2009 2:45pm AEST
A watchdog agency on overseas aid says many Australian programs for developing countries waste money.
Australia is also failing to train the numbers of people it should be helping in East Timor, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, says Tim Anderson, spokesman for the independent group AID/WATCH,
The agency's criticism comes after East Timor President Jose Ramos Horta urged western countries, including Australia, to review foreign aid policies.
He claimed $3 billion pledged to East Timor since independence had never made it to the people or been used to relieve poverty.
AID/WATCH has been vocal on the issue of "boomerang aid" - where aid money to foreign countries ends up funding Australian companies and consultants rather than the people it is meant for.
Dr Anderson told Radio Australia's Connect Asia that aid programs, including those of the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, are expensive and wasteful.
"Very little education and training happens under our aid programs, even though billions of dollars are spent," he said.
"There are a lot of short-term workshops, there's a very small number of scholarships. We are not even the top three of training partners with Timor Leste [East Timor] at the moment.
"Indonesia, the Philippines and Cuba, for example, are far bigger providers of training to East Timor than Australia is."
He says the problem is systemic.
"It isn't resources that stops us training large numbers of people from Timor, Papua New Guinea, or Solomons, and it's not a lack of goodwill," he said.
"It's something about our system and the way we do aid programs."
But Mark Purcell, from the Australian Council for International Development - an umbrella organisation for non-profit aid and development agencies - says community organisations have strong standards in aid delivery.
He believes the Australian Government is moving in the same direction.
"You can make criticisms and I think it's right and appropriate for the president of East Timor to keep everyone on their toes," he said.
"But I think people are working very hard and very seriously to actually improve the lives of people in East Timor."
Heavy oil is a way to improve people’s livesTimor Newsline , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Horta does not want if “Balibo five” film damages TL and RI’sTimor Post , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Gusmão’s security guards did not see Salsinha in the attacksTimor Post , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Horta will respond to court about attacks on his residenceTimor Post , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
UN Police will hand over mandate to other four other district policeTimor Post , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Govt has sent an official letter to Australia about pipelines buildingTimor Post , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
ASDT has never supported FretilinSuara Timor Loro Sa’e , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Ex Police commander for Uatolari district threatened to be sentencedSuara Timor Loro Sa’e , 29 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Rights-East Timor: Women Learn the Political Ropes
by Matt Crook* (Dili)Monday, July 27, 2009
Inter Press Service
Like many women in East Timor, 34-year-old Mariquita Soares joined the Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor (FRETILIN) party during the nation’s 24-year resistance struggle against Indonesian occupation from 1975 to 1999.
Today, she is proud not only of her involvement in the fight for independence, but of her participation in the campaign to get women in East Timor more involved in politics and decision-making as it moves from a traditional structure to one that is more modern and pluralistic.
'Based on our culture, women would normally just stay in the house and so they didn’t have motivation to get involved in politics,' she said.
The occupation of East Timor, first Portugal and then by Indonesia, was 'characterised by oppression', according to the report ‘Participation of Women in Politics and Decision Making in East Timor, published through the Integrated Programme for Women in Politics and Decision Making (IPWPDM) of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM).
UNIFEM set up an office in East Timor in 2000, two years before the country became independent, to provide financial and technical assistance to programmes and strategies that foster women’s empowerment and gender equality, particularly in political participation and decision making.
'When I was in high school, I was interested in politics and then I saw what happened to my family. In 1979, we went to the mountains. Two of my brothers were killed by Indonesians and my father was put in prison. I joined FRETILIN because it was involved in the struggle for independence,' added Soares.
Soares hopes to make it into parliament one day. 'Now I am learning more about politics and maybe at the next election, if I have an opportunity, I would be ready to become a minister or member of parliament,' she said.
Soares is part of a collective of women’s wings of political parties called Haforsa Feto Politika Haburas Demokrasia no Unidade (HFPHDU), founded in September 2008 with 45 female politicians from 14 political parties.
The group is supported by UNIFEM and headed by Josefa Kai-bete, also from FRETILIN.
'There was no unity among the women’s wings so we set up this group to help us unite all the women from different political parties,' she said.
'We have done activities such as attending training on transformative leadership and public speaking. We also have a programme that every three months we have a dialogue with women parliamentarians,' she added.
UNIFEM continues to support members of parliament (MPs) with training in transformative leadership leadership based on the principles of inclusion, consultation and participation -- so they can respond to gender issues when engaging with their constituencies.
Kai-bete, 46, says that the vast majority of women in East Timor have an affiliation with one of the political parties. The work of groups such as hers is to empower these women to become involved in political decisions.
'We want to be involved in decision-making because it’s not just men who can be leaders, but women also,' she said.
An increasing number of young women, who usually follow their families’ party affiliation, are showing an interest in politics, added Kai-bete. East Timor is traditionally a patriarchal society and women have not always had the confidence to speak up, she said.
What differentiates East Timor from its neighbouring countries in South-east Asia is that the national parliament is made up of 29.2% women the highest in the region.
In 2000, East Timor’s First National Women’s Congress saw the setting up of women’s network Rede Feto, which went on to lobby for a quota of 30 percent of seats in the national parliament for women.
The Electoral Law in East Timor, enacted December 2006, states that for every four candidates a political party fields, at least one must be a woman. As a result, 19 of 65 members of parliament are female and women hold three ministerial posts: justice, finance and social solidarity.
But although women are better represented in parliament, leader of the National Unity Party Fernanda Borges says there is still some way to go before their voices are truly heard.
'We still haven’t found many career politicians who will fight for the same issues year in year out to get policy implemented for the benefit of the people. Until we get to that stage, we have women in parliament, but we haven’t really got women participating,' she said.
'The ones in parliament because of the quota system, we have to show the population that we are worth it. If we don’t, they will ask what the point of having all these women there is. The country is not yet convinced that this is what they need,' she added.
Borges says it takes time for women to come into politics and learn about the workings of democracy.
'Those are things you learn through confidence and through having other responsibilities prior to coming here. Women who have never had any responsibilities and then all of sudden end up in parliament they would find it hard to assert themselves,' she said.
The Grupo das Mulheres Parlamentares de Timor-Leste (GMPTL) was formed to overcome this challenge. A women’s caucus, the GMPTL is a mechanism for organising women to defend their rights in a way that future parliamentarians can learn from.
As well as being a leading member of the Social Democrat Party and the vice-president of East Timor’s national parliament, Maria Paixao is the president of the GMPTL. Paixao became involved in politics in 1975 when she joined FRETILIN.
GMPTL raises awareness of issues that impact on gender and strengthens women’s roles in parliament, including building their capacity to analyse legislation and state budgets with an awareness of gender considerations.
The second generation of the GMPTL was formed in October 2007 through a resolution passed by parliament 'to promote women’s equality of gender and reduce all forms of discrimination between men and women for all East Timor', said Paixao.
'Now the parliamentarians need more training because many of the women, they just came from the field or from their families, so we need capacity for them to work on our mission,' she added.
'We have carried out training on gender responsive budgeting (GRB) and team building and also some more training about how to make laws and on decision making. This is also our role and we need this training to give the women the capacity to start work,' she said
UNIFEM instigated East Timor’s first GRB initiative with the Ministry of Finance and Planning to bolster the capabilities of key ministry staff, MPs and women’s organizations to analyse state budgets from a gender perspective.
This in turn put the focus on poor and excluded women, the impact of which is felt on the national and local level.
Also supporting the cause is the Gender Resource Centre (GRC), which was established by parliament through the GMPTL in October last year as a three-year joint initiative supported by UNIFEM and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
'The main goal of the GRC is to provide support to the women and men parliamentarians, especially in pursuing gender equality and promoting gender mainstreaming,' said Lumena Freitas, UNDP’s senior manager for the GRC.
Endah Augustiana, UNDP’s general adviser to the national parliament, said, 'The constitution guarantees that men and women have equal rights and so we have to promote gender equality in legislative work and the overseeing of the parliament, as well as in terms of democratic representation.'
The centre facilitates consultations with MPs on various issues, such as legislation on abortion in the recently promulgated penal code.
'We conducted consultations with doctors for women MPs and some men MPs so doctors could provide them with information about abortion before it was debated in the plenary,' said Augustiana.
Although women’s political participation in East Timor has improved in the years since independence, it is a work in progress.
MP Fernanda Borges said, 'I think the issue is sometimes not the numbers, but the effectiveness. To be effective, we need to build people’s capacity. The level of exposure in the country is a little low for women because of the (Indonesian) invasion and because we were closed off from other countries and never really lived democracy.'
(*This feature was produced by IPS Asia-Pacific as part its series on gender and development, with the support of UNIFEM East and South-east Asia Regional Office.)
PNTL should respect human rights: Atul KhareRadio Televisaun Timor Leste , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Budget for KAK will be addedSuara Timor Loro Sa’e , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Salsinha and Caetano appoint new legal advisorTimor Post , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Reinado is my enemy: AgustinhoTimor Post , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
Legalizing “SDSB” would appear negative impact: LUTA HAMUTUKTimor Post , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
The country needs to recognize PNTL and F-FDTL’s work: MP Riak LemanTimor Post , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
I like justice in the country is going, says Bishop NacimentoTimor Post , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
150,000 million people of Fretilin followers are ready for anotherSuara Timor Loro Sa’e , 28 July 2009- Summary by Alberico Junior
For ANZ, Timor is going places
Fleur Leyden Banking
July 27, 2009 12:00am
IT MAY look like any other suburban bank, but ANZ's Dili branch is one of the group's fastest growing outlets in the world.
Customer foot traffic has been increasing by 2 per cent a week for over a year, new accounts are up 80 per cent over the past year, while lending has doubled.
As one of only three commercial banks in the country, ANZ is operating in an economy which last year had the second-highest growth rate in the world and which has also managed to avoid the wrath of the financial meltdown.
Despite being one of the world's poorest nations East Timor has $US4.75 billion-plus ($A5.8 billion) in oil and gas revenue invested in US Treasury bonds.
The government of Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao last year dipped into this so-called Petroleum Fund to lift the nation's yearly budget by more than 120 per cent to $US788 million, allocating $US240 million to an economic stabilisation fund to combat rising fuel and food prices.
This money is beginning to flow through to the streets of Dili, where most people still live on less than $US1 a day.
Chris Durman, chief executive of ANZ Timor-Leste, says more people are doing business in the fledgling nation, foreign investment is beginning to trickle in and the tourism trade is beginning to sprout wings.
"It's just going gangbusters here year on year," he toldBusinessDaily.
"We are seeing more and more backpackers in the streets, there are backpacker lodges, the hotels are doing a roaring trade and through all this we'll have the Tour de Timor (cycling event) which I believe has attracted some of the most senior cyclists from around the world."
Government figures reveal that 3500 cars were registered in the March quarter, up from 600 in the same period two years ago.
Combined lending across the country, between all banks and micro-lending institutions, cracked $US100 million in the first three months of this year.
And 10,000 people visited the country between January and March, a fifth of these from Australia.
Vital infrastructure such as roads and transport services still need to be developed and a regulatory framework for business needs to be established so foreigners can operate in the country with confidence.
But Mr Durman says the future is "incredibly bright".
"ANZ is extremely confident and bullish about the future," he says.
Please see ANZ Timor-Leste Website: http://www.anz.com/timorleste/en/personal/
Friday, July 24 05:05 pm
East Timor's President Jose Ramos-Horta on Friday urged Australians to ignore the "bogus" travel warning against his country, saying violence was also common in Melbourne.
Ramos-Horta took issue with Australia's travel advisory, which warns of gang violence, civil unrest and robbery, and said tourists would enjoy visiting the tiny, impoverished state.
"It is a very, very peaceful country with fantastic people who will welcome you," the Nobel Peace Prize winner said during a visit for the Melbourne International Film Festival.
"Don't pay any attention to the bogus travel advice from the Department of Foreign Affairs in Canberra, always advising Australians not to go to East Timor," he added.
"Having learned about the level of violence in Melbourne and elsewhere, I will start issuing travel warnings for Australia."
Dozens of people died when rioting erupted in Dili in 2006, prompting the UN to send in police backed by Australian and New Zealand troops.
Canberra's travel advice warns the situation remains unstable, stating: "Violence could occur anywhere at any time in East Timor."
Ramos-Horta dismissed the warnings and pointed to Australia's own problems with violence, including a wave of attacks on Indian students and a hit on a notorious gangland figure in Melbourne last month.
East Timorese president Jose Ramos-Horta personally presented the award for excellence in journalism to SBS Managing Director Shaun Brown in Sydney
"For 20 years or more, I have always had fond memories and respect for this institution," Dr Ramos-Horta said.
"When most ignored (the problems in East Timor), SBS provided us with the coverage, the hope ... that somehow we still exist, and you have done this with outstanding professionalism and quality."
Dr Ramos Horta has been in Australia for the launch of the film Balibo, based on the true story of the Balibo Five, a group of Australian-based journalists killed in East Timor in 1975.
Along with the medal came a citation, honouring SBS for being a voice of democracy, freedom, justice and truth for the past 30 years.
The citation says SBS has drawn attention to the forgotten places in the world and to the overlooked victims of war.