Timor Leste - Fretilin's comeback.

Estanislau Da Silva was a former Prime Minister of Timor Leste, when the Fretilin was the party in government. Before that, he was the Minister for Agriculture in the Fretilin government. He is in Australia this week to attend the launching of a book by a Timorese man, Naldo Rei who grew up in Indonesian occupied Timor Leste, as a committed supporter of the Fretilin led resistance movement.

Estanislau Da Silva spoke to 2NimFM and Latin Radical at a very opportune time. Australian mainstream media is playing down the commitment of the second largest (social democrat) political party to run with Fretilin as a renovated government coalition in next year's elections. But it looks like the beginning of the end of Xanana Gusmao's hastily cobbled together AMP coalition, designed to keep Fretilin out of power after last year's election result, when Fretilin won the largest vote, but was denied the opportunity to try to form a government, by Presidential intervention.

Da Silva does not dwell on this. He moves on and is at his most eloquent and passionate (as a former Minister for Agriculture) when he speaks about the Fretilin party's commitment to resist the pressures of corporate Agribusiness, and a commitment to develop, as far as possible, self sufficiency in basic food products by enabling small farmers. The current government appears to be more interested in encouraging corporate agribusiness investment. Da Silva says Fretilin is committed to resisting corporate pressures to use Timor's precious acreage to grow biofuels - the main factor in a looming global shortage of basic food products. Important, when even corporations like Nestles are saying that there is no such thing as a global food shortage - it is the diversion of food crops to produce biofuels that is causing the rise in food prices.

10.5 Mb 128kbps mono 11:28 min



Post a Comment