Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 4 July 2015

Karen Blixen gave us "Out of Africa". The "Out of Taiwan" model gave us the Austronesians, and then all sorts of others got involved – Polynesians, Micronesians and the Melanesians. And presumably someone will one day write "Out of Teouma" to draw attention to the Lapita people, rapidly becoming better known to anthropologists around the world. "Out of Teouma" they probably weren’t, but your blog editor is only a journalist, and he is delighted to have a listener / reporter’s place in the 8th International Lapita Conference this coming week at the Emalus Campus of USP and knows he will learn a lot about these remarkably different people whose largest community to date was discovered just a few miles east of where the conference is taking place. No scholar, your editor is likely to abridge or delay reports of all events in Vanuatu for the next week simply because the Lapita people are so fascinating and have such a lot to tell us. Pre- and post-Lapita are to be of special interest at this conference. And, as well as the conference, a special exhibition is opening at the Cultural Centre. And the Bastien Foundation is exhibiting the works of regional artists and scholars (both young and old) to show what Lapita means to people of the Pacific – or elsewhere.

And elsewhere is probably where most journalists would today prefer to be when Daily Post headlines "Gov’t eyes media regulation law." The head of government has reportedly said people were taking excessive liberty and putting out what he characterised as "extreme statements" on talkback shows and the Yumi Toktok Stret Facebook group. And so on and so forth. This would seem to be a primary interest of our new PM.

And in another story Kilman also says Transparency International must not advocate political instability by questioning the government stand on West Papua as on the TIV page this week.

Sela Molisa is being recalled as Ambassador to China. His predecessor was recalled by a previous PM but then went on to become Ambassador in Jakarta, a place which seems to feature more and more in ministerial calculations. Why?

The Erakor Chief will not be charging for extensions over water in the lagoon areas, Chief Denny Kalmet advises in Port today.

And The Independent has the two breweries moving their operations off-shore before long. Both want to see an excise reduction.