Vanuatu community organisations petition Australia over its support of Indonesian military units involved in killings of Papuans

Video still of Detachment 88 troops firing live rounds at civilians attending the Third Papuan People’s Congress, October 19, 2011. Photo: West Papua Media

Video still showing members of Detachment 88 firing live rounds at civilians attending the 3rd Papuan People’s Congress, October 19, 2011. Photo: West Papua Media

The Vanuatu’s leading national community-based organisations are petitioning the Australian Government to “stop the killing [of] Melanesian people in West Papua” by way of providing financial support and military training for elite Indonesian Kopassus and Densus (Detachment) 88 military and police units, made possible through Australian bilateral military cooperation with Indonesia. Apart from the Vanuatu Free West Papua Association, organisations signing the petition include the Malvatumauri, VNCW, VANGO and the National Youth Council. All bodies remain convinced that indigenous peoples have an inalienable right to freedom and sovereignty over their national territory. The Australian Government is petitioned to respect all the instruments on Human Rights adopted and proclaimed by the UN General Assembly. (Daily Post)

Government will ensure stability in the maintenance of services to the people. This was another of the points made Wednesday evening in the Prime Minister’s Read the rest of this entry »


PM praises involvement of citizenry at launch of new national sustainable development plan ‘Vanuatu 2030’

PM Charlot Salwai and attendees of last night's official launch of Vanuatu's new national sustainable development plan, 'Vanuatu 2030' at the National Convention Centre. Photo: Vanuatu Government

PM Charlot Salwai and attendees of last night’s official launch of Vanuatu’s new national sustainable development plan, ‘Vanuatu 2030’ at the National Convention Centre. Photo: Vanuatu Government

Prime Minister Charlot Salwai says the Government’s new sustainable development plan Vanuatu 2030 is an important document that will guide the government for the years to come. This is the plan for sustainable economic development of the Republic which replaces the Government’s Priority Action Agenda. The PM was especially pleased with the contributions received from every sector of the community as groups and individuals were keen to make known what they feel are the important development issues. Prime Minister Charlot Salwai was also pleased with the work of the team which had sought out all possible views during 6 months of communicating with people in the islands. The PM launched Vanuatu 2030 yesterday evening. (Radio Vanuatu)

Download the english language version of Vanuatu 2030 National Sustainable Development Plan 2016 to 2030 (PDF, 1.4MB) here, ou télécharger la version française de Vanuatu 2030 plan de développement national durable 2016 à 2030 (PDF, 1,4Mo) ici.

PM Salwai, in his discussions with the Solomons PM Sogavare here earlier this week, has pointed out to the MSG Chairman how Read the rest of this entry »


Mystery fishing vessel detained by Customs on arrival in Port Vila

Customs has detained a Sri Lankan captain and crew of a vessel which is located at the main wharf. A previous owner is also said to be within the country and names Paul Ogden of JPO Kava Export and Import as the owner, the same company JPO accused recently of exporting adulterated kava to New Zealand. There was no fishing equipment found aboard the vessel which is thought likely to be used for inter-island trading. (Daily Post)

66 cases of dengue fever have been confirmed by the Department of Health and six have Read the rest of this entry »


33 MPs confirm support for Salwai Government ahead of motion of no confidence

Vanuatu flag. Photo copyright © 2016 Vanuatu Daily Digest. All rights reserved

The leaders of the different political parties supporting the government of Prime Minister Charlot Salwai Tabimasmas have reiterated their support for him in the light of the motion of no confidence to be debated at 4pm this afternoon, VST. They came together yesterday afternoon at the PM’s Office. Thirty-three MPs (of the 52 total) attended the gathering and confirmed they were ready to defeat the Opposition’s motion. Nine MPs of the Opposition signed the motion – and one can only ask why? The Opposition says it is because of income tax—yet this is an idea that has never gone further than the discussion stage. Read the rest of this entry »


Upgrade needed for plant to allow for locally-caught fish to be exported from Vanuatu, says Govt

tuna fishing

The Vanuatu Government is fully committed to the agreement made with the CNFC Overseas Fishery Corporation of China signed in Beijing in 2004 in relation to the Blacksands fish processing plant. Minister Matai Seremaiah wants the plant fully renovated, he told those present for the offload of frozen fish at the main wharf last Friday. Minister Seremaiah appealed to the task force for the Sino-Van fishery comprising officials of his Fisheries Department and MIPU to work together to ensure deadlines are set for the completion of the work at Blacksands. He says it is very frustrating that fish caught in Vanuatu waters by Chinese vessels carrying Vanuatu flags were being unloaded in Fiji and the catch sold as produce of Fiji. (Daily Post, yesterday)

A letter to the Daily Post from the VNPF Commision of Inquiry (CoI) Chairman clarifies Read the rest of this entry »


Vanuatu-caught tuna unloaded and processed for the first time in Port Vila; VIPA board suspends CEO

The first catch of Vanuatu-caught albacore tuna is unloaded in Port Vila last Friday before being taken to the Sino-Van factory for processing. Photo: Hon. Matai Seremaiah MP/Facebook

The first catch of Vanuatu-caught albacore tuna is unloaded in Port Vila last Friday before being taken to the Sino-Van factory for processing. Photos: Hon. Matai Seremaiah MP/Facebook

The trial frozen albacore tuna off-loading at the Main Wharf took place last Friday without mishap. All media have been reporting the event at which Prime Minister Salwai presided. Henceforth, with the assistance of US surveillance vessels, the Vanuatu Government is committed to the unloading of all Vanuatu-flagged fishing vessels’ fish catches from the Vanuatu Exclusive Economic Zone in Port Vila. Fisheries Minister Matai Seremaiah assisted the PM at the first unloading and many officials were on hand to witness the process. The unloaded fish were quickly removed to the Sino-Van fish packing plant at Blacksands. An American company, Bumblebee, is also discussing a fish canning operation for Vanuatu. Consuming more Vanuatu fish in Vanuatu is likely to reduce the incidence of NCDs as the Food Festival at Tagabe, 9 to 11 November, will make clear.

Daily Post reports the Vanuatu Investment Promotion Authority (VIPA) Board has suspended the VIPA CEO, Dr Andrina Thomas, without Read the rest of this entry »


Historic agreement gives Vanuatu access to US Coast Guard vessels for maritime law enforcement

Minister for Internal Affairs Alfred Maoh and US Ambassador ot Vanuatu Catherine Ebert-Gray at the signing of the Law Enforcement Accord and Ship Rider Agreement between the two countries. Photo: US Embassy Port Moresby

Minister for Internal Affairs Alfred Maoh and US Ambassador to Vanuatu Catherine Ebert-Gray sign the Law Enforcement Accord and Ship Rider Agreement last Monday. Photo: US Embassy Port Moresby

Vanuatu and the United States have sealed a new maritime law enforcement agreement. The Law Enforcement Accord and Ship Rider Agreement between the two countries, signed on Monday, will allow Vanuatu’s law enforcement officers to use United States Coast Guard ships as platforms for boarding suspicious ships anywhere in Vanuatu’s EEZ. This is to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing activity. Other Pacific countries to have signed similar agreements with the USA are Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Palau, FSM and the Cook Islands. Ambassador Catherine Ebert-Gray said that the United States wants to build maritime security in partnership with Pacific island countries. The agreement has helped Kiribati achieve US$4 million in fines in a single year. (Radio Vanuatu)

The first ever off-loading of frozen tuna fish from the Vanuatu EEZ will be witnessed tomorrow morning at the Read the rest of this entry »