28 February 2010

Statement by Timor-Leste to UN Security Council 23 February 2010

Permanent Mission of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste to the United Nations Statement by H.E. Mr. Jose Luis Guterres Deputy Prime Minister Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste on the Issue of Timor-Leste TO THE UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL New York, 23 February 2010 - Mr. President , Mr. Secretary General, Excellencies, - I thank you for the opportunity to address this Security Council meeting on Timor-Leste.

For more than decade the Security Council created various Missions from UNAMET in 1999 and to UNMIT today; you gave to the UN missions different focus, different composition and objectives according to the realities of the time.

The Report of Secretary General before us confirms that stability and peaceful political environment in Timor-Leste is a reality; it痴 a demonstration that your decisions have been right. In spite of the 2006 crises, in general, we may say that the United Nations intervention in Timor-Leste have been very successful.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you Mr. President, the Security Council, the Secretary General of the United Nations, and the international community at large for the continuing commitment to the success of the UN mission in Timor-Leste.

Mr. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon we do remember your visit to Timor- Leste in 2007, and the compassion you have shown when you visited the refugee camps in Dili.

Today these camps that are closed and the IDPS have returned back to their homes and to their families.

 By working together with the United Nations and the international community we were able to solve one of the most difficult and most complex problems in our Country. We would like to take this opportunity to thank your leadership and that of your Special Representative, and Deputy Special Representatives for their contribution to the successes we have achieved.

As a Nation and People we have been blessed by the kindness of the international community. As citizens of the world we value the spirit of Humanitarian solidarity; for that reason the Government of Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao, has on various occasions extended its financial support to the peoples in the region that have suffered natural disasters. After the earthquake disaster in Haiti the Council of Ministers decided to provide to the people and Government of Haiti a financial aid of five hundred thousand us dollars. We could not keep silent in such a magnitude of suffering of fellow Human Beings wherever they are.

Mr. President,

Despite the current world economic and financial crises our economic growth of non oil GDP in 2008 was 12.8%; and for 2009 our preliminary estimate is around 12%. In the meantime the annual average inflation is less than 2%.

The Agriculture sector substantially increased its productivity by introducing high yielding and hybrid variety of crops and by improving irrigation systems.

The Ministry of Finance improved the system of Public Finance Management and the budget execution at the same time remained steadfast on the path of fiscal prudence and discipline. It痴 our commitment to maintain the growth of non oil GDP for years to come and invest in rural area in human resources and in basic infrastructures in order to reduce poverty and unemployment; reducing unemployment is not an easy task; we need Foreign, National, Public investment. To minimize the high level of unemployment we made an agreement with the Republic of Korea to export our labor force; hundreds of Timorese are already working in that Country and we hope that other Countries may follow the example of Korea.

 Mr. President,

The Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao is finalizing the strategic plan for the Country. This plan will play a major role in the development of the Country and to better prepare our People and our Nation to face the present and future challenges.

The budget for 2010 is US$637 million; the National priorities  for this year are: roads and water supply; Food Security; Human Resources Training; Access to Justice; Social Services and Administrative Decentralization; Good Governance; and Public Security.

The Government of Timor-Leste aims to make the Public Management of Public Finance among the most accountable and the most transparent in the world.

Few days ago a Executives from a Canadian Management software company Free Balance have visited Timor-Leste; they are providing accounting services to many countries; an agreement was reached in which they will provide software solutions for public financial and human resource management.

These new solutions will produce at least two portals for the public via a web-based interface; one is called transparency portal where the public can access real time information on how the state funds are being executed including details like amounts allocated, timing of the project, location of the project, and under which program the project is being implemented.

The other is a procurement portal that gives access to information on the procurement plans of the Government providing the business community equitable participation and adequate preparation time to complete and submit the process. Once the procurement process starts, it can be monitored and provide information to the public on how the procurement process was implemented which procurement method was utilized, the process of evaluation, the names of companies and bidders and the allocated to the successful bidder.

The citizens and organizations of my Country will be able to follow closely the budget execution and the procurement process in real time.

We are working towards the compliance of 18 requirements in line with the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative; our aim is to protect and prudently manage the petroleum sector to benefit the people of Timor-Leste and to ensure that those resources and revenues are properly accounted for and that global good governance standards, transparency and accountability are met and implemented. The petroleum fund will continue to be managed according to the current laws and any changes will be debated at our National Parliament.

As a recipient country of aid we have volunteered to become pilot countries together with 6 other fragile states to be monitored on the donor痴 principles of good international engagement in conflict situations. The high level forum on aid effectiveness held in Accra in 2008 endorsed an Agenda for action to reform the delivery of aid and improve the effectiveness of development assistance. The Accra Accords was based on the principles of 2005 Paris Declaration for the essential principles for aid effectiveness.

On 26th this month a global report will be launched in Washington where the Minister of Finance of Timor-Leste, Dr. Emilia Pires will be one of the panelists.

 in April the 8th we will host in Dili the International Dialogue on Peace building and State building co-chaired by United kingdom and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

We hope that by sharing the experiences and best practices between post conflict Countries we are all better prepared to navigate into future with more confidence.

Mr. President

The Council of Coordination of Justice composed by the Courts, General Prosecutors and the Ministry of Justice met on 12th February and they have agreed on a Strategic plan for the justice sector; the recommendations of ICNA were incorporated in this strategic plan. Major areas such as: Institutional Development, Infra-structures and IT, reform and legal framework, human resources development, access to justice, Important measures to strength the rule of law such as the implementation of the Audit Court, the improvement of capacity of criminal investigation, the creation of the forensic services, the implementation of case management system in all core justice institutions.

In February 19th a bilingual version of the Penal Code in Portuguese and Tetum was published. The domestic violence became a public crime. A draft law on protection of Women and Children subjected to Domestic violence was submitted to the National Parliament and is now under consideration. The land law under discussion will also protect the property of women.

The National Commission of Child is now fully implemented; it will have a positive impact as an oversight and consultative body to the Government in the matters related to the protection and dissemination of the rights of the Children.

The traditional or customary justice law is currently been drafted; it will regulate the cases that can be solved by customary justice and also protect human rights, specially related with women and children.

Government did what was possible to create better conditions for justice sector; this year a new training course for future judges, prosecutors and public defenders will began with the help of Portugal.

The justice sector is in its infancy; many achievements have been made but many challenges remain in the road ahead. Justice and reconciliation are part of our system of values.

We are strongly against impunity and we believe in the rule of law and Human Rights.

The Government welcomes the support of UNMIT and International Community in general to the justice sector.

Yesterday at our National Parliament the Chairman of the Anti Corruption commission was sworn in.

It represented a milestone in the fight against corruption and nepotism. Dr. Aderito de Jesus has all the professional and personal qualities to be chosen by absolute majority of the members of Parliament to lead this crucial struggle. He will have all the support he needs from the Government.

The People of Timor-Leste expects a lot from him and I wish him success.

Mr. President,

The stability and peaceful political environment in Timor-Leste is a result of a collective effort from Timor-Leste, United Nations and the International Community.

Many citizens of your Countries have served in Timor-Leste. Today they are still many in the United Nations system, Civilian and Police officers. There are others, from neighboring Countries such New Zealanders and Australians that have contributed to peace and came to Timor-Leste at the invitation of our Country and continue to serve in ISF. We hope that by 2012 they may return back to their families, after a successful mission.

Our relations with countries in the region are excellent.

 Timor-Leste is an observer member of the Pacific Island Forum and there痴 a strong will in our Country that a few years from now Timor-Leste will become a full member of ASEAN.  With Indonesia, we have worked together with courage and forward looking on common issues of the past such as the human rights violations through the CTF.  As democratic countries that are pro human rights, we have promised our people that we will not tolerate impunity or human rights violations in our countries.

Finally we concur with the assessment made in the report that there痴 a consensus in Timor-Leste that UNMIT should remain in Timor-Leste up to 2012.  We thank you all for your support.

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