Public opinion and wishes ignored by govt

Tuesday May 21, 2019 Published in Letters to the Editor
Letter writer Papa Williams criticises the European Union purse seine agreement signed by PM Henry Puna. 19052027 Letter writer Papa Williams criticises the European Union purse seine agreement signed by PM Henry Puna. 19052027

Dear Editor,

I applaud CINews’ announcement in Saturday's issue to conduct a random telephone poll regarding a range of issues government appear to be more interested in “railroading through with little transparency and at any cost”, irrespective of the public's concerns and views.


Some clear examples are the European Union Purse Seine Agreement signed by PM Henry Puna, where we receive some 0.13c/kg for our highly prized tuna fish, rather than the $6-$7/kg our neighbours in the Caribbean fisheries region are getting for their tuna fish. Also, with the other tragic concern that we are contractually locked out of our own fisheries resource for some 18 years, no thanks to this government, (further demonstrating government’s continual disregard of the public's concerns and views, as shown by the public's anti-purse seine marches and their 4000 plus signature petition).

The Te Mato Vai project controversy is another issue where government again chose to ignore the concerns of the landowners, the public and their petition (raising their opposition to the TMV project's viability and likely cost over-run, with their concerns now borne out by the initial $60m cost which has, not surprisingly, now blown out to $90m,and is likely to further blow out to some $120m plus!).

These two issues unfortunately are a great cost to the public purse, especially in terms of the lost potential in the millions of dollars of lost revenue from our tuna fisheries resource, as well as the huge TMV cost over-run, which will blow out even further once the landowners rightfully receive payment for the use of their TMV lands. And will this government realise that chlorination is NOT! the only solution out there to cost-effectively and cost-environmentally mitigate for the best way to purify our potable water not only for us to drink, but also so that it will not cause harm to our agriculture industry if chlorine is their preferred option, instead of another alternative solution that is a far better alternative.

Of course, only this CIP-led government would be foolish enough not to listen to our people’s legitimate concerns!

Yes, there are many other concerns that the public are also aware of, and I hope that CINews’s proposed poll will address many of them, especially those economic concerns that WILL!

All of us need to address the rebuilding of our agriculture, fisheries, aquaculture and the pearl industry; our over-dependence on tourism and "putting all our eggs in one basket" stupidity! Some of predicting a global ginancial collapse - GFC - in 12-18 months time, according to international economists), and the impact on the Cook Islands post-GFC, when we may be a "developed Nation" with a collapsed tourism industry, and with no other diversified revenue streams. What then, Brown cow?!

Papa Williams


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