Henry sets record straight
I have a fantastic life
Tribe says enough is enough
Deliberate gross misappropriation
Block the budget
Relax and enjoy
Country in constitutional strife
Thefts must stop
Get off your high horse
Issues with Pui’s letter
LA prices high
Sea life worry
Henry sets record straight
The letter by Geoffrey Henry earlier this week needs to be commented on. The contents of the letter and the various incidents that took place were over exaggerated and contain many untruths. He said them to make me a bad character and he is the good one.
Now here are some events that have never been told.
After the 1978 Elections and the electoral petition result, there were only six of us, the CIP Members of Parliament. The late Albert Henry, “the Old Man” wanted to meet with us before the sitting of Parliament. The meeting was at 11am on a Monday, BUT my appointment was for 10am.
The “Old Man” said to me that there was a reason why he wanted to talk to me first. “The Purpose of the Meeting” he said “was to appoint the Caucus leader and deputy leader of the CIP Caucus. It was left to him to make the choices.
He told me that the CIP Executive wanted me, and he preferred me as well.
But he then went on to say, “Son, do you remember in 1965, Geoffrey was against me and the CIP, in fact all of my family the Henry family. Today they are all with me.
“So my son, I want you to support me to keep the family together, because if you are appointed, Geoffrey would break away again and he would take the family with him.
This is only temporary, if I win my appeal, a by-election or an election may be held and I want the Henry family to stay together.
“So son, I’m appointing Geoffrey as leader and you as deputy, please agree with me and support my choice” he cried and I cried too. “Dad, you have my support, thank you for the explanation.”
So to say that our late father had no time for me, so Geoffrey was appointed, was a decision our father and I made and to imply that I was trying to take the leadership from him, I would never break my “pledge” with our late dear father.
One of the interviews held with the Chief Justice Gavin Donne, QR, he asked, why was I not supporting Geoffrey.
I told him because he stripped off my portfolio, and just gave me EPS. Judge Donne said “Sir Geoffrey give Mr. Henry back his portfolios, so that we can go ahead, and avoid another General Election”.
Geoffrey didn’t do it and he didn’t say that in his letter.
Tupui Ariki Henry.
I have a fantastic life
Te akaroa iakoe e te po (unknown identity) i te kiteanga au e, ko taau pauanga openga teia ki taku au kiritianga autara ki te etita.
I am saddened for you (unknown identity), knowing that this will be your final response to my letter to the editor.
Te akaroa nei au iakoe no te morunga o toou au manako, te maramakore o taau au apaianga autara.
I feel for you for the shallowness of your thoughts, and the vagueness of your writings.
Naringa ua ake e, e mea para marama to roto i toou manako kamakura, ka kite ua ake koe i te neneva o taau au tu autara.
If only you have a bit of intelligence within your clouded mind, then you may have been able to identify the dumbness of your word selections.
Ko te nga tangata pupu vaa i konei, mari ra, ko korua ia ko to taeake ko Hugh, kare e ko au.
The only people who have been very vocal, are, you and your friend Hugh, and not me.
E oki koe e tatau i ta korua au kiritianga autara, penei uake e, ka kite paa koe e, ko korua tikai te nga “empty vessel”, mei te mea e ka rauka i toou manako tapatai i te opara mai i tei reira tareni.
I would encourage you to go back and review your articles, just in case your imbalance to mine may have the ability to know that you two are the empty vessels.
Kare koe e akanamunamu ana e, te to-ria ia nei taau au autara e te rango, e te akaari pu ua mai nei koe kia aku e, tei roto rai koe i te poiri, mei te mea atura e, e a-nga niu ua koe, e kare e pakau i roto i toou manako.
You don’t even realise that your vocabulary composition has constantly attracted flies, projecting your dark side, just like a coconut shell without any meat in it.
Ko taau au manako akataravake ia aku, kare e taeria ana i toou re’e i te kakapu mai, kia akamanako koe e, ko to korua tu tikai teia ko to taeake ko Hugh.
And for your direct verbal attack towards me, confirms how dumb you are not to realise that you are talking about yourselves.
Ka akaranga ia autara e, “tei tai to korua oire”.
There is an appropriate saying for you; your dwellings are in the ocean.
I wasn’t going to bother answering your question in regards to being actively involved with a Aitutaki Cyclone appeal, but, ei pange ua atu i to a-nga, ka inangaro i reira au e kia kite mai koe e, ko au te mou nei i te pu-te moni a Araura enua i Melbourne nei. I have also volunteered to carry-out all correspondence (verbal and written) on behalf of this organisation.
There are also some government required community documentations such as preparing constitution and other initiatives that I have tagged in during my work time, as a free service to Cook Islands organisations here in Melbourne.
I am sure you will also be disappointed to know that I don’t have a boring life here, but a blessed life style. For the last three years, I have served the state of Victoria by managing part of its metro road resurfacing infrastructure, with an annual total binder exceeding 1.5 million litres of bitumen and emulsion.
And for this week, I am now in Darwin accessing a possible work related transfer, to manage a polymer modified bitumen road resurfacing project, with an annual forecast of up to five million litres.
I am only disclosing this to you, for you to know e, kare au i te neneva mei iakoe rai. Ta te Atua akameitakianga teia i toku oraanga. No reira e te po, aere mai ki roto i te marama, kia kite te Kuki Airani e, koai tikai koe? Again, I have a fantastic life here, with a wonderful career to boot!
Tribe says enough is enough
As titleholders of the Uritaua Tribe in Avatiu Rarotonga, we wish to place on record, our concerns regarding several comments made by Albert Nicholas in a media statement in the CI News recently “ Nicholas alleges dirty tactics”.
He made reference to three issues: questioning the Pu Tapere (John Henry) and what has he done for RAPPA, the Catholic church’s involvement with the campaign and lastly the Cook Islands Party’s involvement in what he believed is “dirty tactics” by certain individuals in our constituency (including tribal leaders) to undermine his candidacy.
We wish to remind Albert Nicholas that the constituency of RAPPA (Ruatonga, Avatiu, Palmerston, Panama and Atupa) has been largely pro Cook Islands Party since 1964. The church representing all denominations, has been a foundation within the constituency and has remained independent of any political involvement even to this day. The position “Pu Tapere” is a traditional one that carries with it, the blessing of the tribe through respect, mana, loyalty and commitment and goes without question .
Albert Nicholas has chosen to question these three aspects of the constituency by making rash allegations of dirty tactics because he believes there is a conspiracy to force him out of politics. Again, we wish to remind him that historically, election times come with lots of promises being made and continue to prevail like shooting stars to capture and lure the attention of many of those living in the constituency and consisting of individuals and families that belong to the Uritaua tribe.
History will show that over the last 20 years or so, the constituency has survived and continues to maintain its own status not because of the support of the incumbent MP but because of the commitment and loyalty of the tribes that live in the constituency. For too long, the tribe has been consulted, used and abused for political self subservience by our MPs but the work has largely been carried out under the leadership of the Pu Tapere and the tribal elders, something Albert Nicholas may well need to reconsider.
For too long, the tribe has been subjected to representatives of “outside clans” who do not hold to the interest of the Uritaua tribe and we now say, enough is enough. It is time that we support a member of our own clan to represent our interests, economic and social values and concerns and we are fortunate that the present Pu Tapere John Henry, has been selected as the candidate for the Cook Islands Party to represent our constituency in Parliament. He has shown through humility, respect and performance that he is more than capable of representing our tribe and he goes with our full blessing.
That being said, he will also be held to account not only by the constituency but also by the tribe. This is an opportunity and we believe timely to ensure that our interests and needs will be finally represented in Parliament should he be successful at the polls, and we are confident he will, given the shameful outbursts and allegations by Albert Nicholas.
To apportion blame on others because of one’s own faults and shortcomings is not only nave but irresponsible and Albert Nicholas should refrain making such allegations in future.
Furthermore, we are advising him in our capacity as tribal leaders, to refrain from creating any more divisions within our tribal families. His wild allegations will come back to haunt him so it is best that he heed the advice of his elders “lest the wrath befall upon him.”
Finally, we wish Albert Nicholas well for the future, because he is going to need it. The Tribe has spoken!
Keu Mitchell (Mrs)
Uritaua I Uta
Deliberate gross misappropriation
I strongly oppose the comments by Matauri Ruta in his article to the editor dated July 21 in comparing Christ’s crucifixion with the Maoate’s beneficial gain for $60,000 from the stimulus package.
As a BTIB member, Mr Ruta’s comments were quite evident, as a recipient of $30,000, of course, he has to be bias in supporting an unfair act of greed.
The BTIB criteria, which was orchestrated and tabled by the Maoates, and was then endorsed by cabinet, clearly stated that only one application per family/business would be accepted. But unfortunately, the audit’s findings prove that there was certainly a conflict of interest committed, and the manipulation of the rules just to qualify and access such funding is selfishly desperate and misleading. This is an act of deliberate gross misappropriation, and should be dealt accordingly.
What Mr Ruta doesn’t realise is this, the findings was not condemning the Maoate’s for offering work for our local people, it was only questioning the avenue that they have channeled themselves through in order to reap an unfair financial benefit over the rest of the other small businesses. An act of that magnitude should not be tolerated, and these guys must be held accountable for their action, and should be asked to pay back this package, and, exit the political scene, and work harder for themselves.
How can you expect our people to support you when you are dictating unfair initiatives for personal gain? Enough is enough, time for a change!!
Kua opu to korua ra, e kua tau te tuatau no te kokotianga.
Block the budget
I was somewhat surprised to hear the opposition leader say on TV on Thursday night that the ‘talking point is not so much how long parliament has been in recess’ but that the focus should be on supply for the country.
I guess if one earns $80,000 and drives around in a government car, then I can understand why he thinks the long recess is unimportant!
If an MP does not know that parliament is the supreme authority in the land and is the cornerstone of our democracy – or what little we have of it – then one must question the motives for one being a member of parliament.
What I want is to see both budgets blocked, those six jive turkeys kicked out of government, a caretaker government installed and an election called as soon as possible.
Don’t worry about the 2010-11 budget – after four years, I have come to believe that anything is possible in Cook Islands politics. We can have the QR issue a decree or even table a 2010-11 amendment budget in July 2011 – after the completion of the 2010-11 financial year (like they have done with the 2009-10 budget).
Dissolve parliament now so that Cook Islanders can put this chapter of arrogant parliamentary stupidity behind them.
Relax and enjoy
I, like Doug May, live in Australia with my husband and two children. I, like Doug May, was fortunate to be one of the passengers on the inaugural flight NZ49 from Sydney to Rarotonga on Sunday July 4.
I, like No Sunday Flights Supporter, agree that we don’t need people like Doug May in Aitutaki. I too, like No Sunday Flights supporter, agree that Doug May should have stayed a day in Rarotonga, to avoid the inconvenience of not having a connecting flight out of Rarotonga at a more convenient time.
I am one of four children born to an Aitutakian mother and European father and raised in Rarotonga. The trip home on July 4 was the first one again in just under nine years. A lot has changed in this time including the fact that my parents had sold our family house on Rarotonga and now reside in Aitutaki.
I think Doug May should have thought about what he was going to say before he put pen to paper. Instead of complaining, deal with it and do something about it! He could’ve made other arrangements like staying the night in Rarotonga or flying in on a different day where the connecting flight was more convenient or, hire a car for six hours.
There is a lot to see and do on Rarotonga and with the island being the size that it is – it would hardly take an hour to drive around which leaves him a lot of time to go swimming, stop in and have something to eat at one of the many eateries on the island, or maybe even attend a church service.
Doug May mentioned in his letter about when searching for somewhere to rest for the next six to seven hours is not an easy task when just arriving in a new country. I moved with my family to Sydney in 2000. Arriving in a new country with two young kids and no family there to pick you up is what I would classify as “not an easy task”. It’s a foreign country and you just hold your head high and deal with it. Like the saying goes “when in Rome you do as the Romans do”.
I think in my 20+ years of living in Raro, Doug May is probably the first tourist that I am aware of who is not happy to just lie under the shade of a tree and watch time pass him by, especially in the Cook Islands. Isn’t that why tourists visit the Cook Islands or places like the Cook Islands – to live life in the slow lane?
So Doug May, like No Sunday Flights Supporter, if you don’t like it maybe you should consider flying to some other destination in the future. Good luck with finding convenience though, unless of course you’re prepared to pay the price.
Before that drama in that courtroom when they were shouting ‘crucify him, crucify him’, a few days before they brought a woman whom they accused of committing adultery according to their law the penalty is death by stoning.
He bent to the ground and wrote. Her accusers moved closer to see what was written and one by one walked away feeling guilty. The message on the ground hit them to the core ‘The one with no sin cast the first stone.’
In the Cook Islands News on July 24 there was a letter by Still Wondering. I am happy to know he is still alive because I thought he was on the Moana that sank to the bottom of the ocean according to his article.
To put the matter to rest while you’re still wondering, pop in to the Maoates and ask them those questions.
If you want a tip from me, go look at the ant and be productive for the glory of our motherland and please stop wondering or you will get lost in wonderland.
BTIB Board Member
Country in constitutional strife
Readers of my letter back in January in which I defended the Prime Minister and the QR from unwarranted and unsupported legal attack bordering on the seditious may also recall that I sounded a warning that the Jim Marurai administration would at some point need to call Parliament together, if for no other reason than ‘to get legal authorisation for the continued expenditure of the public revenues (supply)’. - CI News January 11, 2010.
It would seem now that warning went unheeded and that the Government instead chose to continue spending and persisted in ignoring all entreaties to call Parliament for fear of a no confidence vote. Therein, in my view, lies its undoing and where it has unwittingly played into the hands of its political rivals.
The Appropriation Amendment Bill which I have challenged does not, as the Minister of Finance defends in his speech, comply with the MFEM Act. The Minister further claimed that the expenditure Bill is attempting to sanction is legal because being retrospective Parliament has this power within its general powers to make such laws and further that Article 70 (3) (a) ‘explicitly recognises that authorisation for expenditure may, in some circumstances, require to be retrospective.’
Both claims are incorrect. Power to make laws having retrospective application is seldom used and when it is it is used most cautiously. If used however in a manner which is inconsistent with the Constitution the result is invalid unless passed in accordance with Article 41 (2/3rds, 90 days). The other justification, Article 70 (3) (a), has absolutely nothing to do with retrospective authorisation, quite the opposite in fact, everything that provision is addressing is anticipatory.
If the Minister has a legal opinion to support his Bill it better be better than this and he should table it at the earliest opportunity
The simple explanation for this mess the Government is now in is it needed to keep spending; knew it was running out of parliamentary authority; did not want to risk calling Parliament and continued spending regardless. Now it is hoisted on its own petard as the expression goes or a victim of its own devices.
The hard facts are these. The Appropriation for 2009/10 was $215.5m. Where Government wanted to spend in excess of that or on items which had not had prior appropriation then that expenditure was limited to 1.5% of that year’s appropriation. This did not mean that Cabinet could cancel a $37.5m Chinese loan and suddenly go on a spending spree to equal that sum. There had to be an appropriation. If there were none then $3.233m was the limit (1.5% x $215.5m).
Parliament in our system is the final arbiter of where the public revenues may be spent. It gives plenty of leeway to the Executive and latitude at either end of the financial year but at the end of the day the Constitution and Parliament are paramount and the rules have to be observed.
The Appropriation Amendment Bill and the accompanying rhetoric are a poorly disguised effort on the part of the Executive to deceive Parliament into believing that all is well when it is not.
The Government in this Bill is attempting in 2010/11 to legislate amendments into an Act which related to the 2009/10 financial year and whose provisions have already lapsed.
Suppose for a moment that Parliament took complete leave of its senses and allowed this Bill to pass. What happens then? The Clerk would normally be required to submit it to the Queen’s Representative for assent.
The QR would however have to be advised that the Bill was inconsistent with the Constitution and was attempting to amend provisions in an earlier enactment that had already lapsed and that pursuant to Article 41 could not be deemed to have passed.
The Bill effectively would be a nullity, could not be submitted and the QR could have no part of it. It remains to be seen whether the Minister of Finance is prepared to challenge this and attempt to take it the full distance.
Meanwhile the Minister of Finance should reflect on his own position vis a vis the unauthorised expenditure that has occurred on his watch.
It is the view of this writer that the Minister, to the extent he has exceeded $3.233m of unauthorised expenditure, is in breach of the Constitution. In any other circumstances where the Minister was supported by a majority (currently still untested) and there was no election looming he could do what has been done in the past namely bring to Parliament a Bill seeking to validate the excessive unauthorised expenditure not a trumped up argument for passing an Appropriation Amendment Bill in the wrong year.
Because such a validating measure would in itself be inconsistent with the Constitution it could only be passed as if it were amending the Constitution meaning again 2/3rds and 90 days.
Even if the Minister now saw reason, did the right thing and withdrew the offending Bill and chose to adopt this procedure he would still be out of time as Parliament has to be dissolved at the latest in less than 90 days, so it would seem the Minister has left himself exposed in a somewhat difficult position.
For a precedent of this type of validating legislation see the Finance Act 1972.
John M Scott
Thefts must stop
I am saddened to read the C I News each week from NZ of the thefts on Rarotonga of tourists’ belongings, let alone locals and businesses.
Tourists save very hard for their holidays, a fact that some low life seem to ignore. For some tourists it may be a once in a life time trip, let alone having to travel half way around the world to get to Rarotonga. And the community in Rarotonga should realise that a person who is prepared to sneak around and steal, will be prepared to commit a range of crimes.
These lowlife are our people, they represent us.
Get off your high horse
Well, well, well! I find it most interesting that the person who has been so quick to inundate the public with the morals and virtues we should be looking in a candidate has already stumbled at the first hurdle.
I suggest Mr Beer hop down from his self-righteous horse and have a good hard look in the mirror. But then again he could excuse an indiscretion here and there for the “greater good of the people” like every other politician. Welcome to the dirty world of politics Mr Beer you perhaps might want to pause for a bit the next time you have an inkling to preach.
Issues with Pui’s letter
I am disappointed that you bannered my response to Pui’s earlier letter as “Battle of the Henrys”. While I understand that every business competitively employs every marketing trick in the book (including the one yet to be written) to increase sales, with respect, in this instance your bottom line avidity is beneath good taste.
Then you gave Pui’s response of July 29 the heading – “Henry sets record straight”. This immediately accuses you of historical knowledge that you never had nor ever could have had! How could you assert that the record is now being put straight? I guess, there is only one forgiving answer – an unwitting or a deliberate marketing ploy on your part but, at whose expense? After all, whatever the nature of our personal relationships, Pui and I are blood and we both respect that fact. Please leave our family out of this.
It was my belief and it still is, that the decision of 1978, referred to by Pui, was the mother of all Electoral Court debacles. I believe that no judicial court should ever be in a position to appoint a government, for every government in a democracy finds its true place and existence in the prerogative of the voter. This means, only the voters bring forth a government – no one and nothing else.
In 1978 the government was “appointed” by the Electoral Court. This may be splitting words but the fact is that the person who presided over the case, made the decision with the help of an amicus curiae, tossed out eight CIP elected candidates and installed eight Demos who were unsuccessful at the ballot, was the same person who appointed Papa Tom as Prime Minister with, rather conveniently, the judicial gift of a two-thirds Parliamentary majority! This ploy – an unpublished fact – was designed to give Papa Tom the constitutional ability to ban Papa Arapati from standing again for Parliament.
Papa Tom did not take up the offer. Justice Beattie did. In delivering his sentence in the High Court, following the Electoral Court decision, he included a ban for three years from Parliament against Papa Arapati, reminiscent of what the Ollie Dare administration did in 1964. This was overthrown on appeal. In retort, they stripped Sir Albert of his Knighthood! It is a historical fact that the main players of this drama received a Knighthood – Muldoon, Donne, Beattie, Papa Tom while Paul Temm (Demo’s lawyer) was honoured with a Papal Bull, all at around the same time.
What, in my view, should have been done at the time was to appoint Papa Tom as PM of a caretaker government, set a date for the general elections no more than three months hence, then have Parliament pass an Appropriation Bill to cover the costs of the elections. This way democracy is put to work, the voter gets to choose his/her government.
There are a couple of issues in Pui’s letter that needs comment. Following the Electoral Court debacle the first Demo government did not take long to announce the first meeting of Parliament under their governance. It was to be the crowning piece of their victory celebrations. On our part there was some heavy speculating within the Party ranks as to who might lead the CIP team of six in Parliament. There was an outpouring of deep sympathy for the Old Man such that his choice would be accepted by all. Papa Arapati called me to his private office at Titikaveka. Over a period of several years the Old Man and I, in this same office, had exchanged views over a whole range of subjects – finance, budgets, policies, projects, aid, foreign affairs, speeches and so forth. This time, for the first time, he shut the door.
What transpired between us will remain confidential. Suffice to say, it was very emotional. I have no wish to dispute what Pui says happened when he and his father met. Imagine the difficulty Papa Arapati had – on the one hand a first cousin and on the other a first born son. What is he going to say to one but not to the other that would ensure the goal of team togetherness? The team stayed together. We took on a government of 16 MPs, toe to toe, jabs and hooks, some below the belt all through and past the period when they arrogantly extended their term to 5 years without reference to the nation until 1983. We came to be described as the Magnificent Six. We won the elections in 1983!!
Pui says my becoming the Leader of the Opposition “was a decision our father and I made” and that he would “never break his pledge” with his father. History will show that from 1981 onwards Pui continually challenged my Leadership of the Party. His defection in 1983 was to challenge me, so also the formation of his own Party at the December elections of 1983. Not much really changed after that.
Might I just conclude by saying that during the period of political hiatus when Sir Gaven was lawfully seeking a person who commanded the confidence of the majority of MPs, he met with myself, Pui and Vincent. That meeting was to advise us, following legal advice and a declaratory court decision, what procedures he was about to adopt. Nothing else was discussed. There was nothing about handing portfolios back to anyone.
By the way, in my last letter, it was not Papa Tom “eating my friend Rei” but “beating”?
Sir Geoffrey Henry
LA prices high
I saw your article regarding the flights from LA maybe cancelled due to the dropping of numbers, firstly let me say that would be such a shame as the Cook Islands are such a wonderful place to visit.
My wife and I visited last year we were lucky as Air NZ was running a special in conjunction with hotels so the prices were good, but since then we have checked many times as we wanted to return again this year but, wow, the prices have gone up by at least 25 to 40 per cent in some cases.
It is way too expensive, so we took two trips to Hawaii for the price it would have cost us to return to the Cook Islands, such a shame, we told a lot of friends about our trip and although a number showed interest they all said the same, it is too expensive. So, if you want to compete for the LA tourists the prices will have to come down and reflect today’s economy, more people will continue to go to Hawaii etc because they can get a good deal.
It is unfortunate but we won’t be able to return until some special is offered again and that is sad as we loved our vacation in the Cooks Islands.
Sea life worry
Your article “sea life declining” was something that I really think needs to be given more attention. Our sea life is dying out and I think that people should know that.
I think that more research should be done on this and that more articles should be written to bring this to people’s attention.