10 Desembru 2009
NGOs to hand over hundreds of petitions to President of the Parliament
28 November 2009 marked four years since the CAVR report Chega! was handed over to the Parliament on 28 November 2005 by then President Xanana Gusmao.
The hand-over was carried out at the direction of the Parliament (Law no 11, 2005) but, although it has had 4 years to examine the report, the Parliament has not yet debated its contents and recommendations.
To mark the occasion and to remind Parliament of its responsibilities, NGOs will today hand over 100s of petitions to the President of the National Parliament, H.E. Fernando Lasama de Araujo. The 3000 petitions have been signed by Timorese and citizens from 23 other countries, including Indonesia.
The petition calls on the Parliament "to give urgent priority to discussion and implementation of the recommendations in Chega! in the near future". The petition states that "failure to respond to Chega! reflects negatively on the Parliament and is impeding implementation of recommendations that are important to victims and the building of the Timor-Leste nation".
The petition is accompanied by a background leaflet that contains an Open Letter to the Parliament signed by three victims. The signatories — Gregorio Saldanha (Dili), Elisa da Silva dos Santos (Liquica) and the Family of Flaviano Lemos (Ermera) — say they are "disappointed" at the failure of the Parliament to make Chega! a priority and that they "feel our contribution to the building of this nation through the CAVR process is not being taken seriously".
The letter calls on the President of the Parliament to discuss Chega! in 2009 and to announce a firm date for that discussion.
The CAVR report, entitled Chega! (Portuguese for 'stop, no more!') documents the work, findings and recommendations of the Comissao de Acolhimento, Verdade e Reconciliacao which began work in 2002 following a decision by the CNRT Resistance Congress of 2000 to undertake a program of reconciliation in Timor-Leste.
The report is available in multiple languages and has been distributed widely in Timor-Leste and internationally with the support of the Presidency of the Republic and the Government of TimorLeste.
The report is available from the Post-CAVR Technical Secretariat, Rua de Balide, Dili and is the currently the subject of a much admired exhibition at the Secretariat.
Asociasaun HAK, ETCRN, FONGTIL.
Further Information, please contact Jose Caetano (ETCRN) 7253877; Edio Saldanha (HAK) 7284602