Vanuatu daily news digest | 13 October 2014

PM Natuman spoke briefly of his official visits to the United Nations General Assembly and Vietnam on arrival back in the country, VBTC mid-day news reported today. An MoU between the Vanuatu Foreign Minister Sato Kilman and his Vietnamese counterpart was also witnessed by Natuman at the signing ceremony.

VBTC News today carried the Deep Sea Mining (DSM) warnings of lawyer Dr Christina Ochea regarding the need for secure contractual agreements between the government and prospecting companies. Dr Ochea was addressing the first DSM consultation last week. VBTC said Ochea advised there should be a government office of professional and dedicated staff to ensure work be more efficient, accountable, transparent and beneficial. There needs to be more public comment, too, she added.

Daily Post today has artifact collector Christian Cranois dropping his VT 250 million lawsuit against the Vanuatu Cultural Centre (VKS). Carefully crafted stones he had collected were seized by the Police on VKS orders and held for seven years. A week ago arrangements were put in place by the present VKS Management and Cranois received back in his possession the items he had long ago correctly acquired and paid for.

A suggestion from Forestry and the Municipality that Port Vila could become Sandalwood City appeared in Daily Post. It is that townsfolk gardeners should use their spare land to grow the valuable and aromatic hardwood tree. The wood keeps its aromatic quality for years after harvest.

Daily Post also refers to the speakers at a New Hebrides National Party rally at the British Paddock (now Independence Park) 40 years ago today which called for the abolition of the Protocol which enabled the Anglo-French Condominium.

VBTC News also had MP Robert Bohn insisting the government establish sending workers to the United States and Japan for work on Vanuatu-flagged vessels. He said the government should have bi-lateral agreements to enable such work.