segunda-feira, agosto 11, 2008

FRETILIN requests President Ramos-Horta to initiate investigation into unintended publication of rectifying budget

FRETILIN - Media release - 10 August 2008

The President of Timor-Leste's largest and historic party FRETILIN,Francisco Guterres "Lu Olo" today called upon President Dr. JoséRamos-Horta to order an investigation into why the Revised Budget Law(also known as the rectifying budget) was sent by his office to theparliament, and then subsequently published in the official gazette,thereby bringing it into law, against the President's declaredintentions.

A Public Communiqué issued from the President's Office on the 6th ofAugust 2008, when the President was already overseas stated, thatprior to his departure the President delivered a speech to the nation,in which he informed the nation that he would await the decision ofthe Court of Appeal regarding a request for a ruling as to theconstitutionality of the rectifying budget, before making a decisionon whether or not to promulgate it.

The Communiqué added that: "The President of the Republic left veryclear instructions to his office to send the rectifying budget forpublication only if the decision of the Court of Appeal declared thatthe law was in conformity with all the requirements of theconstitution."
Lu Olo said, "The President's own words, televised to the nation onthe 5th of August 2008, and confirmed by the President's OfficeCommuniqué on the 6th of August, the following day, were that he leftclear instructions that the rectifying budget was not to be sent forpublication with the official gazette.

"It was clear that this is what he had in mind when he spoke to thepeople. We do not believe for one moment the President would havespoken those words whilst intending to do the exact opposite. Despitethis manifest intent, others in his office took actions contrary tohis clear instructions and sent it on for official publication.

According to Lu Olo this is a very serious situation for FRETILIN, forthe nation's democratic institutions and the Timorese people. He addedthat FRETILIN did not blame the President, because it believed he leftclear and explicit instructions with his office before leaving on hisoverseas trip.

"However, we do not have confidence in others who work in the Officeof the President of the Republic. We have grave reservations abouttheir loyalty to the President and their political impartiality to beworking in such a high office," Lu Olo said.

"We are very lucky that these suspect actions are such that may befixed with the good will and cooperation of other institutions of ourstate. But we have to ask, what if it involved something moreserious, something that could not be so easily reversed or rectified,such as a declaration of stage of siege or a declaration to dissolveparliament? Then what? The President had done all he could to ensurehis intent was clear and that his actions would not impact negativelyupon the nation, but even this could not safeguard a serious errorfrom occurring."

"We cannot simply leave this matter as it is. It is important for usthat state institutions know the truth of what actually happened. Wehave to know clearly whether this was the result of human error orwhether there was some more deliberate act or omission to pervert theexpressed will and intent of the President, to usurp his duties andpowers. An in depth investigation must occur into this matter andFRETILIN give its full support to the President in initiating anappropriate legal investigation," Lu Olo added.

Lu Olo also emphasized that "this was not just a matter of anadministrative issue in the President's Office, but a matter of greatimportance to the government, the parliament, political parties andthe people who need to have confidence that the highest office in theland is functioning legally and constitutionally, not to mention with administrative efficiency, whoever the President is or will be."

For more information, please contact Jose Teixeira: +61 438 114 960(Australia), +670 728 7080 (Dili, Timor-Leste)

Corruption in Office of Secretary of State for Professional Training and Employment


(This is the person in the AMP government who will be responsible to implement the host worker program with Western Australia)

TIMOR POST, 6 August 2008
Corruption in Office of Secretary of State for Professional Training and Employment

LABEH: The Office of His Excellency Bendito is full of KKN (Indonesian Acronym for Corruption, Collusion and Nepotism)Bendito: "This is to bring me down"

DILI – The Non Government Organization (NGO) Lalenok ba Ema Hotu (LABEH) (Tetum: "Mirror for Everyone") yesterday released a report stating there are indications of maladministration and indications of corruption, collusion and nepotism ("KKN") in the office of the Secretary of State for Professional Training and Employment (SEFPE). The report from monitoring undertaken by LABEH commencing from the month of April until August this year was delivered directly by LABEH Director, Dr. Christopher Henry Samson to the Secretary of State for Professional Training and Employment, Bendito Freitas.

Before delivering the report indicating maladministration to Bendito, Christopher read out the details that LABEH uncovered from civil society and SEFPE officers themselves that the acts of maladministration by the SEFPE Bendito engaged in were: using a government vehicle to convey his wife to Liquica; some officers working in the SEFPE office were relatives of Secretary of State Bendito; utilization of state budget totaling $100,240.00 for the $2 work per day project buying work equipment such as hoes, steel, shovels, pliers, machetes and other things but these were not distributed to population in the districts of Baucau, Viqueque and Lautem.

Other accusations leveled by LABEH indicated that the SEFPE: engaged in nepotism in his workplace whereby only members of his family were recruited to work in the SEFPE office; and after the recruitment process for workers, many of his family members emerged as employees in SEFPE.

"The worst indication is that the SEFEP office used a budget worth $100, 240 allocated for the Districts of Baucau, Viqueque and Lautem whereby the moneys intended to be used to acquire equipment to be used in the $2 work per day project but the moneys were in fact used for some other unknown purpose because it is all fiction," stated Dr. Christopher, who was accompanied by SEFPE Bendito.

In the report, the LABEH Director also provided information of an allegation of corruption which emerged in the Office of the Ministry for Social Solidarity involving a transfer to the SEFPE from Ministry of Social Solidarity of Portuguese government funds in the amount of $35,780.oo for the purchase of a vehicle for the SEFPE but which was used instead to hire vehicles.

"A case of maladministration is one involving $35,780.00 of cooperation funds between the Ministry of Social Solidarity and Portugal given to the Ministry of Solidarity to acquire transport, but it is said that these funds were not used to buy a vehicle but instead was used to rent vehicles," Christopher affirmed.

He said that as an anti corruption NGO LABEH was disappointed with institutions like the PDHJ and Prosecutor and Inspector Generals who remained silent and do not investigate corruption and maladministration cases that emerge in TL.

"There are many corrupt people emerging now in TL, because the responsible institutions never undertake in dept investigations to show the public whether there is a lot of corruption in TL," he questioned.

In the same instance, the SEFPE, Bendito Freitas informed that the accusations made by LABEH against his Office was not supported by strong evidence because his office has never engaged in maladministration and corruption and did not recruit only members of his family as staff in his office.

"LABEHs report has no basis and has no strong evidence that I can see from the accusations to bring me down. But the government thanks LABEHs initiative to control and battle government corruption."

"For us these accusations serve to give more credence to the private sector's participation in combating corruption so as to promote public transparency and accountability and we will rectify our work to become better.

According to Bendito, the Labeh report which indicates that the SEFPE did not use the funds in the amount of $100,240.00 for the $2 a day project to acquire equipment for the Districts of Baucau, Vikeke and Lautem is incorrect.

According to Bendito the equipment was distributed late because the state budget was approved late. Because of this the government was unable to distribute the equipment referred to the people, he said.

"In the first instance the accusations said we used the funds totaling $100,240.00 allocated to acquire equipment for the $2 a day project in Baucau, Viqueque and Lospalos districts, was not that we did not have it. But the transitional budget approval process was late and the procurement process was late too and the implementation of the $2 a day project had finished.

Because of this that the communities did not receive the equipment, but the equipment for them is being delivered this week because the revised budget has been approved," SE Bendito explained.

SEFPE Bendito also rejected the Labeh report in regard to use of the $37,780.00 to acquire a vehicle. "To say that we hired a vehicle is also wrong because this money that came from the Portuguese cooperation was to support the SEFPE to use to buy a vehicle because the vehicle had already been purchased, and we had not hired it."

"Dr. Christopher said we used the Money $37,780.00 for acquiring a vehicle instead to hire a vehicle is also wrong. Because the money that was given by Portuguese cooperation to support the SEFPE to use for vehicles. This vehicle we already had, we did not hire it," he said.
Bendito said that the recommendations in the Labeh report are incorrect because of incorrect information.

Bendito said, he will meet with the directors and all the staff to enable him to consolidate and better the work of the SEFPE and the information regarding these accusations because sometimes it is because information is not complete so some people flippantly make accusations against the SEFPE.

"I want to speak about the information that many of my family work for me and that many of my family travel overseas. All this is incorrect because my family does not make up all the 2000 people. But during recruitment I selected my Chief of Staff from Baucau, my driver from Bobonaro, and my secretary from same and some from Same, because if there is there is maybe only one member of my family as people will be able to see for themselves," he said.

For their part the Deputy Porvedor * for Anti Corruption and Good Governance PDHJ, Amândio de Sa Benevides said that the Provedor's Office is yet to receive a complaint regarding allegations involving a case of maladministration in the SEFPE. But the PDHJ will undertake an in depth investigation of the relevant evidence and facts.

He said that if the PDHJ starts an investigation and it finds indicia of maladministration or corruption it will make recommendations to the prosecutor general.

"The Provedor has not yet received information, but we will yet undertake an in depth investigation regarding the information and allegations pointed to by Labeh in order to find any relevant facts and in depth evidence in order to be able to recommend anything to the Prosecutor according to law," assured Amandio.

Responding to the statements by Labeh Director that the PDHJ never works to investigate corruption in TL, the deputy Provedor Amandio said that you cannot say that the PDHJ does not work. But to be able to work on corruption investigations in TL the PDHJ itself still lacks investigators and equipment and financial resources are still insufficient.

"The Provedor cannot speak about all corruption in TL, because we lack investigators and also finances. We also ask but the government has not increased funding for the lack of transport and equipment. But we continue to do the work despite the PDHJ lacking in many things which the government has failed to attend to."

"Labeh has spoken a lot about us not doing our work, but they do not understand the difficulties we confront, because by rights they should be requesting the government to increase our funding so that we can capacitate our people to train and increase the number of corruption investigators," he said. (ego)

Footnote: * Provedor (in English Ombudsman) for Human Rights and Justice (known by the Portuguese acronym "PDHJ") is constitutionally mandated as the anti-corruption investigation and recommendation functions amongst other roles.###



Para fazer face à pressão politica sobre o Tribunal de Recurso e à manipulação da opinião pública pelos membros do governo e pelos deputados da AMP quanto ao Decreto-lei do Governo que “criou” o Fundo de Estabilização Económica (FEE), a FRETILIN relembra os factos ocorridos e as razões que levaram as bancadas da FRETILIN, PPT e KOTA a apresentarem uma petição ao Tribunal de Recurso:

1) Antes de submeter a proposta do orçamento rectificativo ao Parlamento Nacional, o Governo da AMP, apesar de não ser da sua competência constitucional, aprovou no dia 16/7/2008, o Decreto-Lei n?22/2008 que “criou” o Fundo de Estabilização Económica alocando para esse Fundo, 240 milhões de dólares americanos que seriam extraídos do Fundo do Petróleo.

2) O Governo disse que o Fundo destinar-se-ia a fazer face ao aumento dos preços das necessidades básicas e para possibilitar a intervenção no mercado e a compra dos materiais de construção.

3) O Governo da AMP decidiu que o Fundo seria gerido pelo Ministério das Finanças.

4) Durante a discussão sobre o Fundo de Estabilização Económica, vários deputados solicitaram ao governo que apresentasse os programas que justificassem as despesas requeridas, os objectivos dos gastos e como estas despesas beneficiariam o povo. O governo não respondeu às preocupações dos deputados.

5) Apesar de os deputados da FRETILIN e da Aliança Democrática (KOTA e PPT) terem chamado a atenção de que o Decreto-Lei era inconstitucional, a AMP utilizou a sua maioria no Parlamento Nacional para fazer passar o Fundo de Estabilização Económica de acordo com os desígnios do governo. Ao adoptar esta atitude, o Parlamento Nacional acabou por perder a sua função como órgão de estado.

Porquê é que as bancadas da FRETILIN, PPT e da KOTA submeteram a petição ao Tribunal de Recurso contra o Decreto-Lei do Governo?

1) Não é por querer apenas fazer oposição ao governo da AMP;

2) Não é por não querer gastar o dinheiro do Fundo do Petróleo;

3) Não é por não querer que o arroz seja comprado para ajudar o povo.

Tendo em conta os artigos 4 e 5 do Decreto-Lei do Governo, referentes às despesas e receitas, os signatários da petição concluíram que o referido fundo deveria ser autónomo por se tratar de gestão de um montante alto do orçamento do estado. Como fundo autónomo, deveria ser gerido por uma estrutura própria e não poderia estar sob o controle e supervisão do Ministério das Finanças. Um Conselho da Administração e um Conselho da Fiscalização seriam necessários para tratar exclusivamente da gestão desse Fundo.

O Governo não tem competência para aprovar legislação sobre este Fundo pelo facto de ser considerado autónomo. De acordo com o artigo 95, n?2 q) e artigo 97 n?2 da Constituição da RDTL, só o Parlamento Nacional é que tem competência exclusiva para aprovar leis que regulam esse tipo de Fundo.

Em face dos referidos argumentos, os deputados da FRETILIN e da AD estão convictos de que o Tribunal de Recurso deliberará de que o Decreto-Lei do governo é inconstitucional.

No dia 30 de Julho de 2008, apresentamos a nossa petição ao Tribunal de Recurso porque o Parlamento Nacional perdeu as suas funções como órgão de soberania que está acima do governo pelo facto de os deputados da AMP terem recorrido à sua aliança maioritária no Parlamento Nacional para aprovar um pedido inconstitucional do governo.

Rejeitamos a declaração de Sua Excelência, Sr. Xanana Gusmão de que, caso o Tribunal de Recurso declare inconstitucionalidade do Decreto-Lei, o governo não terá dinheiro para pagar as dívidas contraídas com a companhia com a qual o governo efectuou contrato para a compra do arroz , contrato esse que, como todos sabemos, foi efectuados sob o mecanismo de “single source”, antes da aprovação do orçamento rectificativo pelo Parlamento Nacional. Questionamos então porque é que o governo da AMP decidiu fazer um acordo de 14 milhões de dólares americanos com a Companhia dos Três Amigos na altura em que este montante ainda não estava

Rejeitamos a declaração de Sua Excelência, Sr. Xanana Gusmão, na sexta feira passada, dia 8/8/08, quando afirmou aos media que, se houver falta do arroz e, se houver aumento de preços dos produtos básicos, a responsabilidade por essa situação deverá ser assumida pelo Tribunal de Recurso e pela oposição. Isto significa pressão política sobre o Tribunal de Recurso para decidir favoravelmente sobre o Decreto-Lei do governo? Ou será para obrigar a oposição a retirar a petição do Tribunal de Recurso? Ou será manipulação com o objectivo de impedir que o público descubra as promessas falsas e a incompetência do governo?

O Governo da AMP gosta de fazer promessas mas não gosta de cumpri-las. Uma das promessas é a de distribuição mensal do arroz para os funcionários públicos. A promessa foi feita sem primeiro terem estabelecido um mecanismo de distribuição do arroz e acabaram por distribui-lo de qualquer maneira, beneficiando apenas alguns. Ficamos preocupados com a notícia veiculada no sábado passado pelo Timor-Post de que o Ministro de facto, Gil Alves, teria afirmado que o governo já não dispõe de verbas para subsidiar o arroz para os funcionários públicos no próximo mês de Setembro.

Por culpa da oposição? Ou será por causa da incompetência do governo? Quem errou nos cálculos? Todo o Orçamento Geral do Estado de 340 milhões de dólares americanos já foi gasto? Questionamos! Foi gasto em quê? Ainda não chegamos ao final do ano e o dinheiro já foi todo gasto? Onde está armazenado o arroz comprado pela Companhia dos Três Amigos e a quem é distribuído?

O Governo da AMP não deve acusar os outros escamoteando a sua má gestão e a sua política de mentir ao povo.

Se o Tribunal de Recurso declarar inconstitucionalidade do Decreto–lei n?22/2008, o Governo da AMP deverá acatar esta decisão com serenidade a fim de servir de exemplo a todo o povo de que todos, sem excepção, devem obedecer às leis e à Constituição da RDTL.

A decisão favorável do Tribunal de Recurso à petição da oposição significaria que Governo cometeu um erro inconstitucional porque não tem competência para legislar dobre o Fundo de Estabilização Económica; não seria erro do Tribunal nem da oposição, mas sim erro da AMP.

Para mais informações contacte com José Reis, tel. 734 1505 ou Elisário Ferreira, tel. 723 7118)###


Todas as traduções de inglês para português (e também de francês para português) são feitas pela Margarida, que conhecemos recentemente, mas que desde sempre nos ajuda.

Obrigado pela solidariedade, Margarida!

Mensagem inicial - 16 de Maio de 2006

"Apesar de frágil, Timor-Leste é uma jovem democracia em que acreditamos. É o país que escolhemos para viver e trabalhar. Desde dia 28 de Abril muito se tem dito sobre a situação em Timor-Leste. Boatos, rumores, alertas, declarações de países estrangeiros, inocentes ou não, têm servido para transmitir um clima de conflito e insegurança que não corresponde ao que vivemos. Vamos tentar transmitir o que se passa aqui. Não o que ouvimos dizer... "

Malai Azul. Lives in East Timor/Dili, speaks Portuguese and English.
This is my blogchalk: Timor, Timor-Leste, East Timor, Dili, Portuguese, English, Malai Azul, politica, situação, Xanana, Ramos-Horta, Alkatiri, Conflito, Crise, ISF, GNR, UNPOL, UNMIT, ONU, UN.