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Ruta Mave: ‘When we don’t receive, we feel deceived’

Monday 8 July 2024 | Written by Ruta Tangiiau Mave | Published in Editorials, Opinion

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Ruta Mave: ‘When we don’t receive, we feel deceived’
Ruta Tangiiau Mave.

We believe that after they are voted in, we will receive. When we don’t receive, we feel deceived, writes Ruta Mave.

Matthew 7.7.11 Jesus says “Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you if his son asks him for bread will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish will give him a serpent?”

These verses teach us a simple and remarkable truth, that God promises to answer the prayers of his people, so why don’t we devote more time to prayer? Why have we developed a spirit of quiet cynicism? Is it because we didn’t get the new job, or car or the sick person died, we no longer believe?

When our government plays God making promises during the electoral year of how they are here to hear the people and help them, promising the voters more than free hedge cutting and kaikai. When they hold our future in their hands with promises of wage rises, promises to protect our elderly and fix our debt. We believe that after they are voted in, we will receive. When we don’t receive, we feel deceived.

What was not said, what is not transparent, what was not implied, was they did not lie.

The promise of a pay rise still exists - they just did not specify when, or how much, or for how long or for whom.

In 2020, Mark Brown as finance minister promised pay rises to our important workers, at least three per cent. Then immediately gave Members of Parliament a 45 per cent wage rise. The miniscule amount they were arguing for nurses, teachers and police is still a long time coming. We asked them for help, but they helped themselves.

Brown said 45 per cent was valid and deserving because Parliament had not had a pay rise in 15 years. Well, most of them had not been in the job 15 days, let alone actually sat in Parliament and did their job for 15 days in the whole year. They all agreed, some Opposition members as well, because you know - if you can’t beat them join them - right?

The average Parliament member and most of them are only just average humans had a wage increase from $50,000 per year to over $72,000 per year right at the start of Covid when most of us lost our jobs and income and our belief the government was here to help its people. Sure, they gave every non-government worker a subsidy of eight dollars per hour, whilst beyond all belief they deemed it a hardship to sit in Parliament and pretend they were doing something. Then they had the audacity to complain and argue about their travel allowance, accommodation allowance, spouse travel and accommodation allowance, along with their five-thousand-dollar clothing allowance, while the rest of the country was broke.

The government says they are going to give us free water and not charge us for water. Then they say they are going to charge us for water and put meters on our home water systems. Now, you will not be charged if use less than this seemingly random amount, but those who use more than what they decide is necessary per person, will be penalised. 

We will be penalised for wasting water, a daily necessity, but they will not be penalised for wasting money. If we use more than 400 litres per person per day we have to pay, but when they spend $1.7 million on useless electric cars, who pays for that travesty? We do.

Will Members of Parliament give up their bonuses, allowances or free water, power and cars? Not on your nelly, guaranteed the rules imposed on us will not apply to them.

When more than 60 per cent of our population earns less than $18,000 per year while there are at least six employees of TTV earning over $100,000 per year where is the justification? Why are they surprised the people are petitioning to not pay for water.

Governments are supposed to provide a viable living environment for the people they govern. Their job is to provide the basic necessities to its people but when our taxes are being used to pay for the gravy train to fill the pig troughs of our leaders, this is why the quiet cynicism has risen to a quiet roar.

How seriously does government view the people’s voices? When the deputy prime minister attends a public meeting in his sports singlet and sunglasses, which he didn’t take off, even after the power went out, they don’t care.

TAU, another example of state-owned enterprises, charging like a bull at a red flag making people suffer at the expenses.

Sign the petition - then share with your MP.