Saturday, February 24, 2018

Arsenio Bano expels journalist in public place


AMBENO – President for the Special Regional Administrative Oe - Kusi Ambeno Authority and Special Zone for Economic and Social Market Arsenio Paixão Bano expelled the daily correspondent of Suara Timor - Lorosa'e (STL) Oe - Kusi Ambeno Abilio Elo Nini for assuming his coverage for the development process in Oe – Kusi Ambeno is incompatible with the truth.

The journalist associations in Timor - Leste are concerning about this matter and already planning to deal with this case particularly about journalists' safety.

The process of expulsion occurred when journalist Abilio went to confirm something else to Arsenio Paixão Bano who was led a FRETILIN party meeting in the Numbei church hall in Oe - Kusi Ambeno on Saturday, 24 February 2018. 

Journalist Abilio also did not enter the meeting because he knew that the meeting was closed to the media, and when in a break time, the public works director accompanied Abilio to approach and find Arsenio Bano to confirm other things but unfortunately Bano immediately expelled Abilio from the meeting. Abilio came out of the meeting hall and sat alone outside, and Bano still sent one of his staff named Amisto Pinto to expelled him from the area. Abilio leave the place with disappointment and feel ashamed for being expelled in public places.

Bano was an important member of FRETILIN's party structure and also as a substitute for Mari Alkatiri as President for the Special Regional Administrative Oe-cusse Ambeno Authority.

"Do not believe him, and do not trust the media anymore because they make a lot of false information", says journalist Abilio mimicking Bano's statement.

Abilio explained Bano's statement that, the media would choose any party please.

“I do not want to fabricate any kind of information. Thus Arsenio showed me his fingers and asked me to get out”. 

“I know you media faked a lot of information. No one can come to interview me. Better get out of here”. 

President for the Special Regional Administrative Oe-cusse Ambeno Authority and Special Zone for Economic and Social Market Arsenio Paixão Bano denied that he did not intimidate the journalist because intimidating for him is out of date, and also not interested in making trouble with others.

“No intimidation. I do not want to give interviews to reporter who write lies” Bano said.


When I shared this news on my Facebook, Jose Antonio Afo'an who also worked in Oe - Kusi Ambeno immediately denied that this news was a fake, and there was no expulsion of STL journalists in Oe - Kusi Ambeno. Not just him, but Arsenio Bano has also denied it, and finally he recognize that he has expelled the journalist at the time.

"Hahaha okay. Was Not rigth time then. Yes he was expelled from the meeting that he was Not allowed in because meeting only for party members. Now, í think, Your tune is getting better. I'm done. Good nigth" he said.


 
Sunday, Feb 25, 2918

Oe – Kusi Ambeno, separated from the rest of Timor-Leste, has often been ignored, and poverty and health statistics show the results. Lately, however, it has been getting attention, even before the Special Zone is really underway.

According to La'o Hamutuk's report that, the 2013 General State Budget was the first to appropriate money for Oecusse regional development from the Infrastructure Fund, and $3.8 million of the $10.6 million appropriated for that year was spent. The 2013 State Budget also appropriated one million dollars for "operational expenses" for ZEESM, of which $925,213 was spent.  The largest amounts went for consultants ($294,000), renting an office in Timor Plaza ($223,000), travel ($78,000) vehicle purchases ($67,000).

La’o Hamutuk added, the 2013 General State Budget was the first to appropriate money for Oe – Kusi regional development from the Infrastructure Fund, and $3.8 million of the $10.6 million appropriated for that year was spent. The 2013 State Budget also appropriated one million dollars for "operational expenses" for ZEESM, of which $925,213 was spent.  The largest amounts went for consultants ($294,000), renting an office in Timor Plaza ($223,000), travel ($78,000) vehicle purchases ($67,000).

According to 2014 Budget Book 6, the State plans to spend from the Infrastructure Fund for the Oe – Kusi Region as shown at right, in millions of US dollars:
These projects include the Tono irrigation system, a reference school, power station, roads and market. Additional money is allocated for other infrastructure in Oe – Kusi, including public buildings, a border post and water supply.

However, the largest financial allocation for Oe – Kusi in the 2014 RDTL budget is $20.5 million as a public transfer to the SAR Authority, which was added by the closed-door Komisaun Eventual a few days before Parliament approved the budget. This amount, most of the $22.9 million for ZEESM within the $27.2 million budget of the Minister of State for the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, is projected to increase every year. Public transfers are not under procurement, tender or reporting rules, and the ZEESM authority will decide how to spend it. According to the Transparency Portal accessed on 30 June, $184,700 had been spent on ZEESM between January and June 2014, all for Goods and Services in the "National Region," including $79,100 for operational expenses (including office security), $31,500 in cash advances, $24,200 on overseas travel and $22,100 on professional services (website and consultants) and $18,500 on utilities.

The spending described in the previous paragraph is to plan and promote ZEESM, not actually to implement or build parts of it. According to the Situation Analysis, "This designated zone would require an estimated $4.11 billion ($4,110,000,000) of investment over a 20 year period, of which 67% or approximately $2.75 billion will be private sector investment and the remaining 33% or $1.36 billion will be contributed by the public sector." We hope that these precise numbers come from a detailed cost analysis, and that there will be clarity about who will pay for the losses if the investments are not as profitable as predicted.

From 2015-2017 ZEESM has received almost five hundred and fifty million dollars ($545,000,000) for their infrastructure projects and RAEOA.

After Oe - Kusi Ambeno became a Special Region Administrative Oe-cusse Ambeno Authority and Special Zone for Economic and Social Market in early 2015 was ‘slightly closed’ to media coverage, and many comments stated that the current mega project in Oe - Kusi Ambeno ‘lack of transparency’ but RAEOA always denied that all mega project there is very transparent. 
 
It is alleged that some Non-Government Organizations in Oe - Kusi Ambeno were silenced, and there were only two media who covering in Oe – Kusi Ambeno namely Radio Timor - Leste and Suara Timor - Lorosa'e daily. However, during this time only the STL daily covering and high light the social issues that happen in Oe - Kusi Ambeno, but now there is already an indication of expulsion of STL journalist in Oe - Kusi Ambeno.

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