For example, as part of their emergency response to COVID-19, both the PNG and Bougainville governments are operating free-call telephone information hotlines for their citizens. The slaughtering of Papuans every day by Indonesians on the other side of this imaginary colonial border (PNG and West Papua) is being undertaken in the name of “national unity and integrity.” There is no unity or integrity in killing your fellow beings.  Australian Strategic Policy Institute analyst Karl Claxton said there is a wide expectation Bougainville will vote to become independent. The visiting Australian Foreign Minister, Marise Payne this week met with the Bougainville women Peace builders at the Nazareth Rehabilitation centre, Chabai on the northern tip of mainland Bougainville. Even so, some research participants did not understand how to select the four options or that the messages changed each week. Mr Miller’s position is supported by the Bougainville Partnership, a development partnership between the governments of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, Australia and New Zealand. This worldview has destroyed millions of lives on this planet. From a strategic perspective, Jennings says it would be best if Melanesia looked to Australia as its main partner on matters of security. Jennings cautions against investing too much hope in Panguna, with remediation costs after 30 years of disuse likely to be high. , According to the Bougainville Peace Agreement, a referendum which includes the option of independence must be held at the latest by June 2020. President MOMIS also thanked the National Government for their commitment to complete the process and the end result must be a total and lasting peace for the people of Bougainville. EMTV Online is the premier destination for Papua New Guinea news on the internet. 10-15 years from 2005. The referendum was approved by the Papua New Guinea government, but the result is non-binding. , “It is time to purify and heal Bougainville” – Francis Ora, “It is time to not let the bird of paradise die in vain” – Airlie Ingram, Sorong Samarai. We cannot forget that the leaders of the Bougainvillean Revolutionary Army (BRA) believed that they were waging a war against what they believed to be between purity and corruption. Sir Puka said a national reconciliation and another involving former combatants were postponed last month because of the PNG government’s change of leadership. Both governments said this delay would be the last. The only other option in the vote was greater autonomy from Papua New Guinea. The islands have a population of around 300,000, and 206,731 people enrolled to vote in the referendum. Bougainvilleans want to defend the earth while mining companies like Panguna mine are indifferent to the suffering of people and destruction their land, all in the name of progress and development. Blown conch shells and bamboo wind pipes reverberated in the air. Claudio said there was only one disruption, in the Konnou area, where a long-simmering dispute led police to advise referendum officers to close one polling station. “We don’t need another microstate emerging in the Pacific.”. Coventry University’s Matt Qvortrup was in Port Moresby to speak to lawmakers about possible scenarios after the referendum. For, good governance is one of the major considerations that must be ticked off or crossed when it comes to ratification of the vote. Agenda two was on weapons disposal, after the joint Weapons disposal secretariat briefed the JSB on the progress of the Me’ekamui Weapons disposal program, the JSB resolved and noted that the weapons disposal work must continue, and also touched on the National Reconciliation ceremony that must be held between the National Government and the ABG and also between the veterans. Sharing of digital content by Bluetooth or local Wi-Fi hotspots does present another opportunity for those with suitable devices.  United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP). Whatever the choice is, and we know that Independence is the greater expectation of most Bougainvilleans, we have to make it work. With 87.4 percent* turnout, voting in the Bougainville referendum â conducted from November 23 through December 7 â concluded with the announcement of results on December 11. The results will be announced in mid-December. The Bougainville Referendum Commission has released the final enrolment and voter turnout figures from the autonomous Papua New Guinea region's independence referendum. All across the Pacific region of Bougainville, people have voted in a historic referendum to decide if they want to become the world’s newest nation by gaining independence from Papua New Guinea. Chief Referendum Officer Mauricio Claudio said there had been long queues and high enthusiasm at many of the 828 polling places. It is time for the leaders of the independent nations across Melanesia to look at their decisions, and ask whether they have been manipulated into giving up their equal share of the pie; fooled into believing that they are free and equal, when in fact, they are merely begging at the table for scraps. It is a matter of urgency for Bougainville and other Melanesian communities to ensure thousands of years of cultural knowledge is preserved for future generations. Apart from any foreign aid it may receive, Bougainville’s future prosperity may well depend on whether it can restart the mine, which contains copper and gold worth an estimated $50 billion. Available at: https://www.rnz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/405899/png-govt-urged-not-to-derail-bougainville-referendum-mandate [Accessed 7 Jan. 2020]. The first Greater Autonomy for Bougainville and the other full Independence from Papua New Guinea. “You see my tears – this is the moment we have been waiting for,” she said. . The roots of the referendum stem from a bitter inter-clan and separatist conflict that ran from 1988 to 1997, fighting that claimed between 10,000 and 20,000 lives through a combination of violence, disease, poverty and dislocation.  In October 2018, former Taoiseach of Ireland Bertie Ahern was appointed to chair the Bougainville Referendum Commission, which is responsible for preparing the referendum.. Referendum is one of the pillars of the Bougainville Peace Agreement (BPA). On 19 August 1975, Kerr briefed Charteris on his “thinking” on the growing secessionist movement in Bougainville and a plan to secede unilaterally from PNG in September, the same month PNG secured its independence from Australia. Many handsets had flat batteries on the day of the group interview – this indicates a technological challenge of daily life in Bougainville, which has consequences for mobile telephone initiatives. If there are to be future iterations of a telephone hotline in Bougainville or elsewhere, it must be but one tool in an multi-channel effort. If they agree then we will inform our people and the basis will be the credibility of the common roll,” he said. The greed of the elite is causing great pain in the Pacific Islands in the name of development and those local elites (masters of modernity) whose day to day preoccupation is perhaps about what’s tonight dinner menu at a Chinese restaurant tonight. He said as the Minister for Bougainville Affairs Minister it was only proper to thank these countries for their continued support especially assisting PNG on the Bougainville issue. The end of the fighting led to the Bougainville Peace Agreement, the creation of the Autonomous Bougainville Government, and the promise of a non-binding referendum on independence. Australia and the U.S. have agreed to help Papua New Guinea redevelop its Manus Island naval base, which sits 350 kilometers north of the mainland and commands key trade routes into the Pacific. This Sunday Nov 17 a special #60Mins, Bougainville Experience Tours Arawa see Part 3 below, “Bougainville set to hold long-awaited independence referendum”, “Bougainville referendum not binding – PM”, “Move to postpone Bougainville Referendum”, “Bougainville and Papua New Guinea set target date for independence referendum”, “Independence vote delayed for Papua New Guinea’s Bougainville”, “PNG leader apologises to Bougainville for bloody 1990s civil war”, “Bougainville ‘very happy’ to have Bertie Ahern involved”, “Question agreed for Bougainville’s independence referendum”. Deep scars remain from the conflict, both physical and emotional. Results of the referendum are not expected until at least mid-December, as many communities on the island are isolated, and some live on smaller surrounding islands. The Pacific Region is fast becoming important for competing superpowers for geopolitical and economic strategy. As a Bougainvillean and a Papua New Guinean, I am less concerned about Greater Autonomy, Independence (or the ‘Third Choice’ whatever it might be). Independence option wins in Bougainville referendum Three weeks ago we reported on Bougainville's independence referendum - a non-binding vote on whether to split from Papua New Guinea and become a separate country. Dates for this weeks BRC Bougainville Roadshow announced, 3.  ROKA, L.F. (2014). Most people hope the two sides can find a “Melanesian solution” that will deliver a workable form of autonomy for Bougainville, says Pryke, using the term that describes the region of the South Pacific that includes PNG, Fiji, the Solomon Islands and other island nations and territories. pic.twitter.com/mlOchQpiJ1, — 60 Minutes Australia (@60Mins) November 14, 2019, The Bougainville visit by the 6 man 60 minutes team was managed by Zhon Bosco Miriona , Steven Tamiung and Colin Cowell from Bougainville Experience Tours Arawa see Part 3 below, Main agenda was a link with China in the Pacific and Bougainville, Picture below Steven Tamiung with the 60 Minutes Crew, Part 1 U.S. edges China out of race to fund Bougainville independence vote. The young Upe men can remain isolated from their communities for several years as they learn about culture, medicine, hunting and other skills. National unity for who? The mine was a huge export earner for Papua New Guinea, but many in Bougainville felt they got no benefit and resented the pollution and disruption to their traditional way of living. Jennings says Australia would be likely to give aid to an independent Bougainville to try to keep China at bay. As intended, some users gathered in groups to listen to the recordings. While 79,285 calls were made to the hotline over the eight-week pilot, overall, the knowledge of the telephone hotline amongst research participants was generally low. The region is home to the vast Panguna mine, then the world’s biggest open-cut copper mine, owned by Bougainville Copper Limited, which then had Conzinc Rio Tinto as major shareholder. ” As we celebrate Independence Day for 2019, I want to reflect on the upcoming referendum and the future political path of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville. Bougainville faces mental health issues legacy from the civil war | Asia Pacific Report. They’ve taken the bark, the leaves and the branches, until the tree no longer resembles its former greatness. “Will we see ourselves in the long shadows of the dwindling light and the advanced darkness of the evening dusk, or will we see ourselves in the long and radiant rays of the rising sun? Bougainville’s people will vote on October 17 to either become an independent state or to have greater autonomy within PNG. Most of Australia’s aid goes to Papua New Guinea. With doubts persisting about Bougainville’s economic viability if it cuts ties with the central government, the referendum outcome will be closely watched by other PNG provinces pushing for greater autonomy, such as East New Britain, New Ireland and Enga. It allowed Bougainvilleans to ring a free-call number and hear pre-recorded messages about the referendum and the two other pillars of the Bougainville Peace Agreement – autonomy and weapons disposal. Bougainville House of Representatives, Picture Above : Prime Minister, JAMES MARAPE and ABG President, DR. JOHN MOMIS signed the joint resolution September 12 at the Presidential villa Buka in front of journalists and the Ministers and members from both the ABG and the National Government. Differences were noticeable, however, between the three regions of Bougainville regarding access to mobile network coverage, as well as access to other information and communication mediums. A crowd of people in Bougainville watching the handover of the agreed definitions for the two questions for the Independence Referendum. By: Yamin Kogoya from West Papua living in Australia. This site remains as an archive of all BRC public information regarding the conduct of the Bougainville referendum. , Damien Dameng – prominent leader of the Meekamui movement in the 1950’s, from the Iran-Pangka Valley in Panguna District – recognized the impact of these “alien invasions” and contamination of life on the islands. “This land must become holy again, Me’ekamui. Voters had two options â more autonomy, or full independence. It is a period when serious negotiations and consultations between the government of Papua New Guinea and Bougainville will begin, based on the result of the Bougainville Referendum. Melanesia at stands at a crossroads, Which Way? Of the 42 people who participated in the group interviews, 37 owned mobile telephones at the time of the research. A ceremony to announce the results of Bougainville's historic referendum opened with a chorus of the Bougainville anthem. There were also requests for improvements to other communication mediums, particularly radio broadcasting. Also, this week a survey of more than 1,000 Bougainvilleans found people still need to know more about the Bougainville Peace Agreement and the referendum. The people of Bougainville, an island group in Papua New Guinea, have voted overwhelmingly for independence. 4.With a projected vote on independence from Papua New Guinea just three months away, suddenly Bougainville is the centre of a lot of activity. “China is everywhere. In the many years I’ve covered Bougainville it was my first time to see them, and after those of age had voted they drifted silently back into the bush to complete their schooling in tribal law, medicine, building, fighting and love magic, amongst other life skills. Each message was less than two minutes and recordings were updated weekly. People were chanting and danced in circles beneath a Bougainville flag nearby to welcome the handful of election monitors, and Upe initiates, as the village prepared to vote. al concern is more about our insouciance and disregard for good governance that we must sternly guard against, whatever the political outcome of referendum will be. Two upcoming reconciliations are to be held on Bougainville at the same time before the referendum. The affected voters got a chance to cast their ballots elsewhere. The mining investors are untouched by the generational pain that mining and civil war have caused in Bougainville. Regular polling finished yesterday (Tuesday) at 6pm, with only the submission of postal votes to continue to Saturday 7 December, 6 pm. Nova Religio: The Journal of Alternative and Emergent Religions, 18(4), pp.35–54. The 2019 Bougainville referendum offered valuable lessons for future elections, Kerryn Baker and Thiago Oppermann write. The women had representatives that came all the way from North,Central and South Bougainville for this meeting. “I suppose copper stands to the Provisional Provincial Government of Bougainville as does oil to the Scottish Nationalist Party,” he said. This was conducted by the BRC, the independent agency established by the two governments of Papua New Guinea and Bougainville to conduct the referendum, between 23 November and 7 December 2019. The mine has remained shut since the conflict. The people of Bougainville have chosen overwhelmingly to become the world's newest nation in a historic referendum to break away from Papua New Guinea. We can grab and take the opportunities to heart or we can squat and squander them. Sir Puka, who has significantly lifted the tempo on Bougainville since coming into the role just weeks ago, said it is vital for all of PNG’s leaders to show their commitment to the referendum process. @AdrianaAdri09 @ahawatson @GordonPeake @Jezzamiller, Bougainville History of Independence : Buckingham Palace letters: Queen’s secretary compared Bougainville’s bid for independence to Scotland. The people of Bougainville, an island group in Papua New Guinea, have voted overwhelmingly for independence. With a projected vote on independence from Papua New Guinea just three months away, suddenly Bougainville is the centre of a lot of activity. Are the current Melanesian leaders still holding onto this important vision? The BRC announced the result on 11 December, and returned the referendum writ to the Governor-General of Papua New Guinea on 13 December 2019. The period after the referendum vote is often referred to as the Post-Referendum Transition. Nana Buba from New Dawn Reports on visit to Bougainville. Bougainville Affairs Minister Sir Puka Temu has told Bougainvilleans that the result of the referendum vote will not be presented raw to the floor of Parliament for ratification because it is a non-binding referendum. It allowed people to ring a free-call number and hear pre-recorded messages about peacebuilding and the three pillars of the Bougainville Peace Agreement. In the nearby French overseas territory of New Caledonia, voters rejected independence from France by a 56 percent to 44 percent margin in November 2018. This directed us to engage in clean battle. A two-part question commonly asked of those of us closely following the Bougainville referendum is whether the PNG government is likely to obstruct the result, and if so, will there be a return to violence? The service was promoted through traditional media channels, but principally through an introductory, automated ‘robocall’ from the President of Bougainville. Claudio said that giving Upes a chance to vote at male-only polling stations was one of many referendum firsts. Dr Temu also acknowledged the members of the Regional Peace Mission contributing countries like Solomon Islands Vanuatu and FIJI for their continued support for peace throughout the Pacific. Of those: It seems that the overwhelming outcome of the referendum on Bougainville, with over 97% of eligible voters supporting independence, surprised even seasoned observers. We prayed to God and he gave us strength. But the newly appointed PNG Minister of Bougainville Affairs, Sir Puka Temu, said the BRC needed to make a formal request if it wanted to delay the referendum. ULMWP Statement on the Republic of Vanuatu’s Independence Day – United Liberation Movement for West Papua (ULMWP). The vote is not binding and any move toward independence will require agreement from the central government of Papua New Guinea, commonly referred to as PNG. Hon. The two-week referendum period began on November 23 and closed on December 7. A reconciliation ceremony will be held on July 2 between the central PNG government, the national defence force, the Autonomous Bougainville Government and the Bougainville Revolutionary Army. The cocoa and copra industries ravaged by the war have been re-established, there is small-scale gold mining, and potential for hydroelectric power and a revived forestry industry. Bougainvilleans have long been the target of violence – they have endured decades of exploitation and abuse from Germany and Britain in their colonization pursuits. The results were announced in the town of Buka by former Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern, the chairman of the Bougainville Referendum Commission. A crowd of people in Bougainville watching the handover of the agreed definitions for the two questions for the Independence Referendum. The woman who made several comments is the former ABG member representing the women of South Bougainville, Rose Pihei who stressed the need to address traumatized people and also address mental health issues in our communities. Of the 181,000 ballots, almost 98% were in favour of independence. . He said the possibility of trouble was “disturbing” and that “we must hope that matters can at least be satisfactorily contained”. Tragically, crises such as those in Bougainville are typically reported on as “primitive tribes fighting”. Invisible capitalists, whose whole philosophy is based on Scottish Capitalist Adam Smith’s book “The Wealth of Nations”, are cashing their cheques amidst the slaughter of innocent Melanesian, Polynesian, Micronesian, Indigenous Australian and other ancient people across the world. It seems that any significant decision about the fate of a single nation is no longer sustainable in the long run. “During polling we’ve witnessed a festive and joyous mood,” he said. Dates for this weeks BRC Bougainville Roadshow announced: Information and progress updates from the Chair Hon Bertie Ahern and Commissioners. The Queen read Kerr’s advice, the letters show.  The vote was originally scheduled for 15 June 2019, before being delayed to 17 October due to a row over funding.  PMC Editor (2016). This seminar will include brief presentations by the producers of a telephone information hotline that operated for eight weeks just before polling. In the pre-referendum period, there was a strong focus on informing voters about the two referendum options (independence or greater autonomy) to enhance the credibility and legitimacy of the result and help maintain peace in a post-conflict setting. For now, a lack of accommodation inhibits tourism. “They will need, according to international studies, at least 900 million kina ($390m) a year to rebuild Bougainville as an independent state.” He said independence would also mean “Papua New Guinea will not be able to be politically responsible for an independent Bougainville state”. “China has always adhered to the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries, and respects the independent choices of people in all countries,” it said in a statement. “The conduct of the vote was excellent. A truce brokered and maintained by regional neighbors that included Australia, New Zealand and Fiji helped restore order, and a comprehensive peace agreement was signed between Papua New Guinea and Bougainville in 2001. But the mine, operated by BCL, a subsidiary of Conzinc Riotinto Australia (now Rio Tinto Ltd.), became a focal point for conflict over pollution, migrant workers, resource ownership and revenue sharing, and has been dormant since 1989. The research found no striking differences in the awareness or use of the service by age or gender. This is a war between industrial civilization versus the natural world. Let us not forget the foundation stones and the building blocks of good government, regardless of what form that Government takes. People voted overwhelmingly for independence (97.71 per cent) in what was widely regarded to be a successful process, with an informed and engaged citizenry. The vote in PNG’s autonomous region of Bougainville, formerly the site of a bloody civil conflict, will run from Nov. 23 to Dec. 7, and could trigger separation negotiations to create a new nation in the strategic waters of the Pacific.”, Background to the 60 Minutes Story to be broadcast Sunday 17 November, Why is China on the move in the South Pacific? Still, as is well known, the vote is not binding. Along with Japan, New Zealand and the U.S., Australia has committed to a 10-year $1.7 billion electrification project in Papua New Guinea. EMTV is Papua New Guinea’s oldest and largest television station and has been the country’s window to the world for over three decades, EMTV offers a free-to-air, general entertainment television channel and provides one of the most respected and trusted sources of news and information in the country today. If humans are to survive as a species, we cannot continue our destructive, terror-reigning path. Bougainville is a 21st century tragedy with the potential to be extinguished under the Western capitalist system or live as a spiritual-based, nature centric civilization.  King, T. (2013). James Marape, who took over as Papua New Guinea’s prime minister in late May, said on June 14 he would prefer Bougainville to remain part of a unified nation, but would listen to the people’s voice and then consult over future options. Likewise, its population would be one of the world’s smallest – slightly smaller than Pacific neighbour Vanuatu, and slightly bigger than Barbados. Interviewed by Anna-Karina Hermken, Author of “Marian Movements and Secessionist Warfare in Bougainville, Papua New Guinea” (November 22nd, 2005). The so-called palace letters, a trove of previously secret royal correspondence, shows the Queen’s private secretary Martin Charteris responded by comparing Bougainville to Scotland and its hopes that oil reserves could fund independence. We have not learnt enough. She was very keen to know the work of these peace builders who work in their communities working tirelessly to end violence against women and children and also carry awareness on the upcoming referendum. [online] Asiapacificreport.nz. Professor Qvortrup said he’d seen other referenda results implemented in a matter of months, for instance in Czechoslovakia and Ukraine, which said were examples of countries that broke up quickly. The Bougainville conflict, in which rival clans on the island fought among themselves and with the Papua New Guinea Defence Force, evolved from multiple issues, including land rights, customary ownership, “outsider” interference and migration, mineral resource exploitation, and perceived inequities and environmental damage associated with the rich Panguna copper mine. Available at: https://www.culturalsurvival.org/news/bougainville-president-fails-victims-brutal-resource- conflict [Accessed 7 Jan. 2020]. But more than 40 U.N. staffers and over 100 international observers helped oversee a process that Claudio said had gone remarkably well. “We will need to work cooperatively with all stakeholders to achieve our objective of bringing the Panguna mine back into production,” he said. His movement believed that colonial administration, mining and churches were thieves full of trickeries, and that Bougainville must be restored. Ecosystems are being depleted, cultures annihilated, and the money is going into the greedy hands of international pirates and global capitalists. The Bougainville hotline is one such example. Many of the handsets were basic mobile telephones – suitable for text messaging and calls only – rather than smartphones. Despite the overwhelming desire for autonomy, Bougainvilleans require political support and good faith from the PNG national government in Port Moresby before a new sovereign state can be established. The visit was the first by an Australian minister since a bungled 2015 attempt to open an Australian consulate led the PNG government to slap a ban on Australian officials travelling to the autonomous region. The 98% result is above pre-referendum predictions – most experts expected the figure to be around 75% – 80%. Discussions will take place with the Papua New Guinea government to decide when – or if – the transition to full independence can begin. See Bougainville Referendum Commission Website. The civil war may be long buried by the media, but political leaders in Port Moresby, Canberra, Beijing and Washington are keeping a keen eye on Bougainville as they plan their next moves. The gender of the voter could not be determined, Outside the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, in PNG provinces, and Solomon Islands and Australia. The enemy of the people are the industrial nations with the support of local governments who don’t understand the complex networks of indigenous social structures, value systems and their deep connection to their ancestral land. The new country – should it happen – would be small, with a land mass of less than 10,000 sq km (slightly larger than Cyprus, and slightly smaller than Lebanon). “If they say no then that’s it. Available at: https://thediplomat.com/2019/12/australia-china-and-bougainvilles-choices/ [Accessed 7 Jan. 2020]. Since Panguna closed in May 1989, Bougainville’s people have led a life built around agriculture and fishing. Adriana SchmidtAdriana Schmidt is the Director of the Autonomous Bougainville Government’s Directorate of Media and Communication, the agency responsible for whole of government communications. Bougainville Referendum Commission Website. Such major change will require a fundamental shift in our consciousness to realize that the value and integrity of life in the indigenous cultures of Bougainville or Palestine is just as important as those in London or Beijing. The United States, along with Australia, New Zealand and Japan, helped plug the funding gap of 7.1 million kina ($2 million), according to a breakdown of funding arrangements provided to Reuters by the Bougainville Referendum Commission. PNG Prime Minister James Marape has said PNG was “stronger with Bougainville than without” but it would listen to the people of Bougainville “and then consult on options for the future”. The â¦ Available at: https://thatssojacob.wordpress.com/2014/03/14/flip-the-script-nora-vagi-brash-which-way-big- man/ [Accessed 7 Jan. 2020]. Even in colonial times, Bougainville self-reliance would at best be years.... From 15 June I say, or, rather, was never sent, ” she said that people. 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