SUVA, Fiji ---- A senior officer in Fiji's military has rejected any criticism in a recent study indicating many Fijians want a smaller army with no political role.
PAPE’ETE, Tahiti (RNZI) --- A new political group has been formed in French Polynesia incorporating the To Tatou Aia and the leaders of several small parties in the lead-up to the elections in April.
SUVA, Fiji (RADIO AUSTRALIA) --- The Fijian Government has missed a self-imposed deadline to present its new draft constitution.
SUVA, Fiji (FIJI LIVE) ---- Fiji's military as an institution will not support any political party even if Prime Minister and Army Commander Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama decides to form a party.
RAROTONGA, Cook Islands (RADIO AUSTRALIA) --- Cook Islands MP, Norman George, has criticised his country's prime minister for being soft on Fiji's government.
SUVA, Fiji (FIJI LIVE) ---- Former United People’s Party President Mick Beddoes is intending to apply for a membership with the newly proposed Social Democratic Liberal Party (SDL).
SYDNEY, Australia (AAP) - Australia will lose its political and strategic influence in Fiji if it doesn't restore good relations as soon as possible, the Pacific nation's former prime minister says.
PORT VILA, Vanuatu (RNZI) ---- The office of Vanuatu’s Prime Minister says the diplomatic status of Pascal Ahn Quan Saken is a matter for the Foreign Affairs Ministry.
PORT MORESBY, PNG--- Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neil has announced that Treasurer Don Polye will be acting Minister for Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology.
NUKU’ALOFA, Tonga (MATANGI TONGA) ---- Gloria Guttenbeil Pole'o was appointed as the Clerk of the House effective on Monday 28 January 2013, the Office of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga announced.
CANBERRA, Australia (THE NATIONAL TIMES) --- Australian former foreign minister Alexander Downer has rejected speculation he will seek to fill the vacancy created by South Australian opposition leader Isobel Redmond's resignation.
PORT VILA, Vanuatu (PACNEWS) --- The Chief Registrar of Vanuatu’s Supreme Court, John Obed Alilee has clarified that no ruling will be made today on the case against the country’s Prime Minister, Sato Kilman.
PORT MORESBY, PNG (THE NATIONAL) ---- Papua New Guinea Opposition leader Belden Namah has issued a stern warning to MPs to reject the extension of the government’s grace period to avoid regrets in future.
PORT MORESBY, PNG (THE NATIONAL) ---- Papua New Guinea deputy Prime Minister Leo Dion’s recent trip to Vanuatu to attend the 25th anniversary celebrations of the Melanesian Spearhead Group is not in breach of the government’s ban on overseas travel.
PORT MORESBY, PNG (THE NATIONAL) ---- The Manus asylum seekers centre will face its first legal test in a PNG court on Feb 12.
SUVA, FIJI ---A senior officer in Fiji's military disputes the results of a recent study showing many Fijians want a smaller army with no political role. Lieutenant Colonel Mosese Tikoitoga, Land Forces commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces, was responding to research by the Pacific Theological College's Institute ...
PORT MORESBY, PNG --- Transparency International PNG found the 2012 elections “unacceptable” and questions whether the “will of the people was truly expressed”.
PAPE'ETE, Tahiti -- The heads of seven Polynesian parliaments have arrived in Tahiti at the invitation of the president of French Polynesia’s territorial assembly, Jacqui Drollet, who wants to deepen regional links with a two-day conference this week.
SUVA, Fiji--- Fiji's Prime Minister Commodore Frank Bainimarama has defended his government’s position on the transfer of land in Momi.
SUVA, Fiji ---- Fiji's Prime Minister Commodore Frank Bainimarama refutes claims that the draft Constitution gives too much power to the next Prime Minister.
ISTANBUL, Turkey---- Fiji’s Minister for Fisheries and Forests Inia Seruiratu this week delivered a statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China at the tenth session of the United Nations Forum on Forests.
SUVA, Fiji--- Fiji's Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has been approached by a group of people to lead their soon-to-be formed proposed political party in the 2014 elections.
SUVA, Fiji ---- Fiji's Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama says the draft Constitution spells the way forward for a new Fiji.
BRUSSELS, Belgium ----- Former Nigerian President, Olusegun Obasanjo has been elected chair of the ACP Eminent Persons Group (ACP).
BRUSSELS, Belgium ----- Former Nigerian President, Olusegun Obasanjo has been elected chair of the ACP Eminent Persons Group (ACP).
PORT VILA, Vanuatu ---- Vanuatu’s Parliament is set to debate another motion of no confidence against Prime Minister Sato Kilman on Thursday.
As Noumea prepares to host the leaders of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) in June, there are new divisions in New Caledonia’s leading anti-independence party and debates over voting rights for next year’s crucial Congressional elections.
In the photo, the eyes are blurred out. But the name and passport number on the photo are all too clear: that of the current Prime Minister of Vanuatu, Moana Carcasses Kalosil. Interesting, because the passport snap appears on a social network in China, called QQ, advertising passports for sale ...
It’s a story that won’t go away. Like a narrative being developed into a movie, the plot just gets thicker by the day. The story is about treasure hunt in Solomon Islands. And the chances are that you’ve heard it before. Or read about it somewhere.
Pregnant Asian ‘tourists’ mostly from China and Korea have been choosing Saipan in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) as a good destination to give birth if they want automatic U.S. citizenship for their children.
What started as protests against French nuclear testing in the South Pacific 15 years ago has seen the rise of a Greens Party from backbench politics to the new national government in Port Vila. When Verts Pacific became the first Green political party in the region by contesting an election ...
In July 2013, in a global first, the two main regional conferences on climate change and disaster risk management (DRM) will convene a joint meeting of the Pacific Platform for DRM and Pacific Climate Change Roundtable in Nadi, Fiji.
League of nations, prepare yourself to be door knocked. From a distant possibility to a distinct probability, President Oscar Temaru looks set to drag French Polynesia, much of it kicking and screaming, into an independent future.
With less than two years or up to January 2015 to finish his term of resigned governor Benigno R. Fitial, newly-sworn-in Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) Governor Eloy S. Inos said his administration will reprioritize and continue ongoing efforts to beef up the tourism economy rather than bring ...
Benny Wenda plinks away at the strings of his ukulele, painted in muted colours not unlike an Obama poster. Soft, early evening light filters through the wooden blinds as Wenda continues tuning his instrument, taking a breath from an endless tour by now two decade old.
It’s been eight months since the old Fugalei produce market had closed down. And there were plans a new premises would open in mid-year 2013. But it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen as the bidding process continues to drag on.
A review of the Pacific Plan headed by former PNG Prime Minister Sir Mekere Morauta is underway. This review is aimed at building a “regional consensus on the future direction of the Plan and provide a platform for prioritising regional integration and cooperation efforts over the next decade”.
A recent doctoral thesis titled “Overseeing and Overlooking: Australian engagement with the Pacific islands 1988-2007” has come in for some media coverage around the wider region. Its author Jonathan Shultz has been critical of the manner in which successive Australian governments have handled the country’s relationship with the region, citing ...
No date has been set for a by-election for the vacant Nukufetau Island seat on Tuvalu. The seat was left vacant following the death of finance minister Lotoala Metia in Suva in December last year. Secretary to Government Panapasi Nelesoni told ISLANDS BUSINESS their lawyers were still working on details ...
Is Fiji now finally in transition towards a new government, after more than six years of military rule? Frustratingly for many, it’s still too soon to tell. Much controversy has been stirred up this year so far, within the country and overseas, about the drafting of a new constitution and ...
Over the next few weeks, political groupings formed under the new Political Parties (Registration, Conduct, Funding and Disclosures) Decree 2013 will be applying to register as hopeful new political parties aspiring to contest the next national election, scheduled for September next year.
The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) has turned another page in its political history when it formally installed a new governor and lieutenant-governor within five hours after Benigno R. Fitial resigned as governor on Feb. 20.
Fiji will take on its role as chair of G77—a significant group of developing nations from across the world—this year. It was elected to the post on September 28 last year at the United Nations in New York.
It was around 2002/2003— when Solomon Islands was in the middle of a bloody and costly ethnic crisis, engulfing the nation and was tearing it apart.
If and when the United States secretary of Labor decides not to extend the federal immigration transition period beyond Dec. 31, 2014 in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), then the foreign worker population is supposed to be zeroed out by Jan 1, 2015.
New Caledonia’s next Congressional elections will not be held until May 2014, but it seems like the electoral campaign has already begun.
After a few years when Papua New Guinea and its neighbour and former coloniser Australia seemed to have drifted apart, recently the relationship has intensified immensely.
It may have something to do with the split personality of the condominium which saw the concurrent existence and legality of three separate legal codes in one jurisdiction.
An alarming rise in suicides and the first reported suicide of a youth under nine years of age has rallied New Zealand’s Pacific community into taking ownership of a social issue that has left many grieving families searching for answers.
As the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI) scales down its operation, the country it came to rescue 10 years earlier from a deadly ethnic social uprising appears to be tethering on yet another.
The festive season has just taken a whole new meaning with Cyclone Evans turning everything upside down in the heart of Apia.
Canberra began 2013 by restoring full diplomatic ties with Suva and urging Australian businesses to capitalise on impending boom in Papua New Guinea. Several senior Australian government ministers landed in PNG last month on separate occasions seeking closer ties.
Tuvalu’s recent request to the Western Central Pacific Fisheries Commission to be exempted from a ban on the use of Fishing Aggregate Devices (FADs) could have been based on their own economic reasoning but it once again rear the ugly head of individual interests as opposed to a united front ...
Expect heated campaigning in Tuvalu following the death of a minister in the Telavi Government.
In a stinging rebuke to the Governor of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Governor Benigno R. Fitial, voters almost wiped out during the Nov. 6 mid-term elections most of his candidates that might shield him, again, from being impeached by the House of Representatives, as well as convicted ...
Sato Kilman, the leader of Vanuatu’s People’s Progressive Party (PPP), has been returned to office as Prime Minister after national elections marred by claims of electoral irregularities.
Two world superpower nations—one global leader and the other second biggest—both had their elections in November. Washington re-elected Barak Obama as president and Beijing replaced a ten-year reformist with a billionaire businessman Wen Jiabao.
‘The Pacific will continue to rise in importance geopolitically for the United States, which rightly believes it has some catching up to do with Asian powers in the region, particularly China. President Obama’s new administration will align ever more closely with Australia and New Zealand as could be gleaned from ...
Disappointment was the general consensus of the Pacific group of the African Caribbean Pacific countries who flew all the way to Brussels last month to be only told the European Union was not ready to progress the negotiation of their Economic Partnership Agreement.
The Pacific ocean is unimaginably vast. It contains more than 20,000 islands of all shapes and sizes.
While climate change fears and migration are causing grave concerns of de-population in parts of Polynesia and Micronesia, another part of the region is being cautioned about over-population.
It all began with a dress and an island shirt left in the room of Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, and Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge during their recent visit to the Solomon Islands, that has embarrassed palace officials, sparked furor in cyberspace and anger in Honiara towards a ...
Governor Benigno R. Fitial of the Northern Marianas gets to keep his job—at least for now—after a first ever House of Representatives resolution impeaching the governor got only nine of at least 14 “yes” votes needed to move the process to the Senate for trial.
The Marshall Islands is one of the most aid-dependent nations in the world, with 70 percent of its national budget funded by donors.
For the first time in the history of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), a resolution impeaching or removing a sitting governor was introduced in the House of Representatives. It has since become one of the most divisive political issues in this U.S. territory of almost 54,000 people.
Faced with a boycott by parliamentarians who were not going to allow a vote on an incomplete draft bill, the outgoing Vanuatu government of Sato Kilman withdrew its remaining 17 bills and opted for caretaker mode.
The new PNG Government of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill plans to make the fight against corruption central to its new set of development policies which it will pursue over the next five years.
Lobby groups are crying out describing it as harsh but the Australian government argues it is the only way to deter foreign refugees from finding easy passage into Australia.
A United Nations Special Rapporteur will release his report on the United States nuclear testing in the Marshall Islands when the UN Human Rights Commission opens its session in mid-September in Geneva.
In less than 24 hours, Edward T. Buckingham went from being the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands’ (CNMI) attorney-general and highest law enforcement officer to a fugitive from justice with a US$50,000 cash bail imposed on him for not appearing in court in connection with criminal charges filed against ...
‘The United States obviously realises it is already too late to catch up with China’s boat that is well into the waters of several Pacific Islands nations with a wide range of cooperation initiatives, including financial assistance and infrastructure projects. It will be interesting to see what measures it (US) ...
‘The young grouping needs to get its priorities right. It appears to have too many irons in the fire with little by way of a firm plan or strategy to give a meaningful shape to them’
Battle lines are being drawn for Vanuatu’s upcoming national elections on the eve of Hallowe’en.
The annual summit of Presi dents in the north Pacific in early July agreed to pursue two innovative climate change response strategies and reached agreement on several regional organization proposals.
A general elections will be held in Palau on November 6 with three formally declaring their bid for the presidency while four are running for the vice-president’s slot.
PNG had its national election last month. The results are probably out by now. And the new government will be taking office anytime soon. Here, I report on my week-long observation of the election campaign in the highlands of this colourful country.
Some 300 delegates turned up for the meeting which the Vanuatu Government intended to demonstrate its ‘happiest country’ nickname.
After earning the dubious reputation of having the first public pension agency on American soil to file for bankruptcy protection that a U.S. district court later dismissed, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) has earned another unflattering title—that of a U.S. territory or state with three major agencies ...
Joy, Peace, Progress and Prosperity; that men should brothers be, make nations see. Our Solomon Islands, our Solomon Islands—our nation Solomon Islands, stands forever more.
Last month’s Ministerial Contact Group (MCG) meeting was a potential game changer that ended up simply reaffirming the sanctions status quo.
The Chief Justice of Papua New Guinea Sir Salamo Injia was forced out of the Supreme Court building in Waigani, Port Moresby, by police in a scene never before seen in PNG.
The Pacific Islands Forum Ministerial Contact Group (MCG) on Fiji has acknowledged the country is “in transition” towards democracy following its third visit in early May—its first in three years.
It’s been 19 years since former police and quarantine officer Frederick C. Ngeskabei retired, that’s why he was shocked and frustrated to receive on May 2012 a letter from the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) Retirement Fund saying he has to pay back $225,000 in alleged overpayment since ...
Is it strange how history repeats itself? It’s not the first time Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers have been expelled from Port Vila.
Papua New Guinea’s convulsive politics continues to dominate all other areas of public life, including economic development, as the timing of the five-yearly election due in June, and the autonomy of the courts, became central issues in March and April.
Pacific nations are largely reliant on aid, trade and investment from traditional partners like Australia, New Zealand, United States, France and Japan. But in recent years, there has been increasing interest in finding new sources of development assistance, economic and political support.
As the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) joins other Pacific countries like Palau and Fiji to enact laws that tackle Trafficking In Persons (TIP), recent analysis has revealed the vulnerability of the Pacific islands region in this organised criminal activity.
Some Pacific Islands countries are so geographically challenged that they will always depend on aid and at least 10 will not have a viable private sector, facts that need to be accepted and understood before expectations are heaped on development in the Pacific region.
Bob Carr has opened the door to multilateralism and vowed to prioritise environment issues of the South Pacific in his maiden public speech delivered before the Australian Senate on March 21.
Nuclear tests are held in Nevada. Demonstrators riot against the Vietnam War. Shadows gather on a grassy knoll. And Indonesian paratroopers waft down onto the western half of a vast island, marked out on their maps as “Irian Barat”.
The themes of “One Micronesia” and “The Ocean Unites Us” were the backdrop to the 17th Micronesian Chief Executives Summit on Guam in mid-March.
It was an elaborate and sombre funeral. A special one befitting a king who will be known as the King who gave his people the right to decide their own government.
Call him Classic Carr or a natural senator as he dubs himself, but Bob Carr as Australia’s new foreign minister, will widen multilateralism approach for the ailing Gillard Government.
Papua New Guinea’s Council of Churches dedicated February 5 as a day of prayer for the country’s constitutional crisis to be overcome.
Around US$575 million will be pumped into US Territories and Freely Associated States if the US$3.8 trillion federal budget proposed by US President Barrack Obama for the 2013 fiscal year gets the nod in the US.
For centuries, Samoa has always prided herself as a country that promotes the role of women as leaders in every aspect of society
After nearly three years of official censorship in Fiji, the veil was suddenly lifted in early January followed by a snowballing of activity towards a new constitution and a general election promised for 2014.
The Bismarck Sea, off the northern coast of Papua New Guinea (PNG), is an expanse of water described by marine biologists as having the highest diversity of corals, fish, crustaceans, molluscs and marine plant species in the world.
The incumbent 59 year-old President Anote Tong of Boutokan te Koaua Party got the nod to be President of Kiribati for his third and final term allowed under the constitution during the nation-wide presidential election held on January 15.
When Danny Philip, Solomon Islands’ eighth prime minister, was forced on the floor of Parliament to tender his resignation last November, his accusers were adamant he deserved the humiliation.
The commitment by Fiji’s interim government for a list proportional representation method in the new parliament is welcome news for everyone.
The boldness, the pace, even these days the stakes, of politics in resource-rich Papua New Guinea are breathtaking.
Papua New Guinea’s current political stability—the key to its unprecedented economic growth among other positive indicators under its founding father Sir Michael Somare—is under threat of crumbling.