29 October 2017

Xanana Gusmão wants to "gain experience" as opposition in East Timor

WARNING MACHINE TRANSLATION OF ORIGINAL PORTUGUESE TEXT Xanana Gusmão wants to "gain experience" as opposition in East Timor 16 Oct 2017 15:32 MotherMedia / Lusa

The former president of East Timor and leader of the CNRT, the party that came second in the July elections, said in Funchal that he intends to "gain experience" as an opposition, refusing to reveal whether he supports the government program.

After the election results, we held a national conference [CNRT - National Congress of Timorese Reconstruction] and decided what action we would take. And we decided that we would be an opposition party so that we also had enough time to implement a program to train party cadres, to prepare for and gain experience as an opposition, "said Xanana Gusmão on a visit to the island of Madeira.

On the other hand, he said that he has been abroad for two months, dealing with international affairs, particularly with regard to the maritime borders of East Timor and with initiatives by g7 +, a group of 20 countries with fragile states and internal conflicts, to which he presides.

"I do not stand above the current government. I do not say that I represent the State. I only have to thank all the parties that have continued to trust me in defending the interests of the nation. The [my] party is there, "said Xanana Gusmão, refusing to reveal the CNRT's position on the FRETILIN executive program.

"We appeared in 2006, in the crisis, and we were soon government for two consecutive periods. And now, as we lose, we said: let's think, we will improve the ability to win if we continue to participate in this game of democracy, "he said.

The three opposition forces in Timor-Leste - National Congress of East Timorese Reconstruction (CNRT), People's Liberation Party (PLP) and Kmanek Haburas Timor Oan National Unity (KHUNTO) - control 35 deputies and last week were united in a Parliamentary Majority Alliance (AMP) that wants to be a government alternative if the executive program, led by FRETILIN with 23 deputies, is hit and the government falls.

The Timorese law provides that the Government's program be debated for five consecutive days and will only be voted on if the Government submits a vote of confidence or the opposition files a motion of rejection.

It should be noted that the programs of the last two Governments have not been the subject of any vote and have been debated but not voted on.

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