Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 24 August 2015

It has been a weekend without any big news as such, but now we have Yumi Toktok Stret telling us …

… Last week Gov’t Cabinet (COM) discussed options to deport the judge in the Bribery Case, Justice Sey. "Cabinet was divided over the issue. The action was itself contempt of court. If it had been the case, YTS says, 18 MPs would have been arrested then. Now 3 MPs will be witness, many more attempting to switch sides. Looks like the end of the day one or two persons my end up in Jail or be deported." (YTS)

Thursday sees finalisation of most submissions. The YTS information sounds realistic and suggests more MPs and possibly ministers will turn to supporting evidence already to hand in the Preliminary Inquiry. Up to now we have had the names of Hosea Nevu and Kalvau Moli. Vila Times today now adds in the name of one more of Cabinet rank, First Deputy Speaker Samson Samsen. Vila Times says that when Nagriamel MP John Lum was given a ministerial post, he, Samsen, defected from the then Carcasses-led Opposition side of the House to the then Natuman-led Government side. All three MPs have signed the witness documentation which will assist their indemnity from prosecution. (Vila Times)

Vila Times also confirms the burning down of a restaurant at Lakatoro owned by Prime Minister Kilman’s wife as likely arson, a story covered by Daily Post at the weekend.

Otherwise, print and electronic media have given over a fair mount of space to the PM being in India along with all the Pacific Island leaders for the second summit of the Indian and island Pacific prime ministers. India is opening up visas for cooperation on climate changes issues, renewable energy, education and sustainable development.

And another matter which has had a good many column inches and hours of radio and TV time recently is the Godzilla El Nino we are to expect. The drier than usual time is bound to continue, and worse than usual: present observations confirm this.

NUP’s Edwin Aprimen was elected Luganville Mayor last week. Several women councillors boycotted the elections because they knew the electoral issue was decided by men already and without the women participating. Daily Post has the women saying the gender equality preached by male politicians in Vanuatu is "lip-service."