Regional

Arrests in Papua as Solomons delegation visits

JAYAPURA, 25 APRIL 2018 (RNZ PACIFIC) – Nine West Papuans were arrested by Indonesian Police in Jayapura for a small protest over a visit by a Solomon Islands delegation. The government-led delegation travelled to Papua’s provincial capital at the invitation of Indonesia’s government, but the way it slipped into Papua province largely under the radar...

17 graduate from Cisco Academy

A TOTAL of 17 students of the University of the South Pacific’s Alafua campus yesterday graduated from the Cisco Networking Academy. The graduates were involved in Information Communication Technology (ICT) studies, engineers, Information Technology (IT) managers, systems and network administrators and technicians from local internet service providers. According to the head of the School of...

Commonwealth leaders express ‘grave concern’ about climate change impacts

LONDON, 24 APRIL 2018 (CLIMATE HOME) – Climate change risks are pushing millions of people worldwide into poverty, heads of government from the 53-strong Commonwealth warned on Friday. Leaders from the loose coalition issued a statement affirming their commitment to the Paris Agreement at the conclusion of a week-long meeting in London. With more than...

China pledges Vt10 million to Vanuatu Government for volcano victims

PORT VILA, 24 APRIL 2018 (VANUATU DAILY POST) – China has announced its assistance of Vt10million (US$100,000) towards the relief and recovery of the people on Ambae, whose homes and gardens have been destroyed by volcanic ash. The Acting Prime Minister (PM) and Minister of Education and Training (MOET), Jean Pierre Nirua, handed the Vt10...

Fritch’s party wins first round in French Polynesian polls

PAPE’ETE, 24 APRIL 2018 (RNZ PACIFIC) – French Polynesia’s ruling Tapura Huiraatira party has been the winner in the first round of the territorial election, securing 43 per cent of the vote. The party led by Edouard Fritch is on track for a large majority in the 57-member assembly if it can repeat this result...

Second evacuation on Ambae will cost Vanuatu government Vt200million: DG Benjamin

PORT VILA, 23 APRIL 2018 (VANUATU DAILY POST) – Vanuatu Director General (DG) of the Ministry of Climate Change and Disaster Management, Jesse Benjamin, said the operation cost of another massive evacuation on Ambae starting at the end of April is likely Vt200million (US$1.8 million), a similar figure to last year’s operation. The evacuation operation...

Police and church visit districts to help reduce crime

DISTRICTS in the Solomon Islands have had visitations from Police and the Anglican Church of the Diocese of Isabel who are determined to help reduce crime rate in the area. A statement by the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) said the awareness talks were expected to go for five days. Supervising Isabel Provincial Police...

Prince Charles destined for Samoa CHOGM in 2022

LONDON, 23 APRIL 2018 (SAMOA OBSERVER) – Samoa has overcome a strong challenge from Malaysia in the bid to host the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in 2022. Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, who was in London for CHOGM meeting, spearheaded Samoa’s bid against other nations. The Sunday Samoan understands that the final...

French Polynesia goes to polls in territorial election

PAPE’ETE, 23 APRIL 2018 (RNZ PACIFIC) – Voters in French Polynesia go to the polls today to elect a new territorial assembly for a five-year term. A total of six parties are contesting the first round of voting to choose 57 members. A party needs to win 12.5 per cent of the votes to make...

Man in custody for allegedly raping teenage girl

A MAN in his 30s has been remanded in the Kirakira Correctional Centre to appear before the Eastern Magistrates Court on May 1, 2018, for allegedly raping a 12-year-old girl. The man has been charged by Police in Makira-Ulawa Province after his arrest on April 14, 2018. It is alleged the man raped the teenage...

Papua New Guinea’s critical HIV drugs shortage sparks warning that people may die

PORT MORESBY, 23 APRIL 2018 (ABC) – Papua New Guineans living with HIV may die if critical anti-retroviral drugs used to treat the virus are not restocked soon, a member of the local HIV advocacy body has warned. The number of available drugs has fallen to low levels, and the country’s medical facilities have begun...

Pacific nations benefit from NZ judicial initiative – Chief Justice Palmer

AUCKLAND, 20 APRIL 2018 (RNZ PACIFIC) – Chief justices from around the Pacific have been meeting in Auckland this week to consider ways to improve the rule of law and good governance in their judiciaries. The Pacific Judicial Strengthening Initiative is funded by the New Zealand aid programme through to 2021. The chief justices group...

Cook Islands Party focus on infrastructure

RAROTONGA, 20 APRIL 2018 (COOK ISLANDS NEWS) – The Cook Islands Party (CIP) plans to continue focusing on infrastructure heading into the June 14 election. In an exclusive interview with CINews, finance minister Mark Brown said the CIP would launch a list of their key policies on April 30, when they will also announce their...

Lord Sevele defends his idea to move A-G to Privy Council

NUKU’ALOFA, 20 APRIL 2018 (KANIVA TONGA NEWS) – Former Prime Minister of Tonga who was behind the controversial 2010 constitution has defended his idea to remove the Attorney General from Cabinet and attached the position to the Privy Council. The political and legal post was in Cabinet before a draft report submitted to Parliament by...

PM O’Neill begins CHOGM meetings with courtesy call to the Duke of York

LONDON, 20 APRIL 2018 (PNG PM OFFICE) – Papua New Guinea Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill CMG MP, has begun his range of high-level meetings at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) with a courtesy call to Prince Andrew The Duke of York. During the meeting at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday, the Prime Minister and...

Queen tips Prince Charles to follow her as Commonwealth head

LONDON, 20 APRIL 2018 (AP) – Queen Elizabeth II opened a summit of the 53-nation Commonwealth on Thursday and backed her son Prince Charles to be the next leader of the association of Britain and its former colonies. In a ceremony at Buckingham Palace, the queen said she hoped Charles would “carry on the important...

Forum calls for protection of land and resource rights

NEW YORK, 17 APRIL 2018 (UN NEWS CENTRE) — Protecting the land and resource rights of indigenous peoples will not only provide security for historically exploited groups but also help the global fights against climate change and biodiversity loss, said speakers on Monday at the annual United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. In her...

MP urges votes for referendum

BUKA, 17 APRIL 2018 (RNZ PACIFIC) — An MP in Bougainville’s autonomous regional parliament says it’s important that there is a strong, emphatic vote by Bougainvilleans in next year’s independence referendum. The Papua New Guinea autonomous region is to hold a referendum in June next year under the terms of the Bougainville Peace Agreement. PNG’s...

PNG imposes plastic ban

PORT MORESBY, 17 APRIL 2018 (THE NATIONAL) — The Papua New Guinea Government has imposed a blanket ban on the manufacture and import of plastic shopping bags but is allowing a one-month grace period for everyone to fully comply with it. The announcement Monday caught the PNG Manufacturers Council by surprise, which said it had...

Election deadline for Cook Islands

RAROTONGA, 17 APRIL 2018 (COOK ISLANDS NEWS) — The closing date for nominating candidates entering the 2018 General Election in Cook Islands has been set for 30 April, with each applicant also required to pay $500 (US$367). This notice, from the electoral office, comes after Queen’s Representative Tom Marsters dissolved Parliament and set the election...