La’o Hamutuk is a Civil Society Organization which monitors and analyzes the development process. In July, you will vote for Members of the National Parliament. This process is a democratic path to determine your future and that of the next generation.
The political campaign has already started, and we think that your participation will help future leaders to decide on good and appropriate policies for Timor-Leste’s actual situation.In addition to helping you understand each party’s program for the next five years, this will also help you vote wisely, according to your conscience.
Therefore, we are distributing some questions to help you participate in the campaign dialogue process. Voters can ask these questions of political parties when they campaign in your communities. We suggest the following questions:
- At present, half of our domestic economy and nearly all state activities are paid for with petroleum revenues. What policies will your political party undertake to continue state services and sustain people’s lives when the oil is used up and the Petroleum Fund is empty 12 years from now?
- At present, more than half of the state budget is spent on physical infrastructure, especially electricity. Only a little is allocated for human resources, like education and health. Do you think it is good to continue these priorities, or to develop the capacity of Timor-Leste’s people to carry the nation forward?
- Ten years from now, our youth population will be much larger, and unemployment may be higher than it is today. What policy will your party propose to help Timor-Leste deal with this program, and which human resources will you prioritize to develop this nation?
- Timor-Leste’s Government just began to borrow from overseas, and there is a plan to borrow much more to finance the National Strategic Development Plan. How can Timor-Leste pay back the debt, when our oil and gas is gone?
- At present, the Government prioritizes the Tasi Mane Project on the South Coast, which will rely on the Greater Sunrise gas field. If we cannot bring the Greater Sunrise pipeline to Timor-Leste, what will underpin this project? What does your political party think about this investment or spending of the people’s money?
- If Government actually develops this Tasi Mane project, does your political party think that the project will provide work for many Timorese people, or benefit rich people more than the poor? What is your party’s approach to the participation of women and men in this project?
- During its illegal occupation, Indonesia killed nearly 200,000 people, and after independence impunity continues to prevail for Indonesian generals involved in crimes against humanity in Timor-Leste. Does your party think it is important for perpetrators to be brought to court? What will your party do to end this impunity?
- Timor-Leste has not yet ratified the International Convention for the Protection of All Person from Enforced Disappearance. Does your party think we should sign and ratify it? If so, how do you think we should implement this Convention?
- Corruption is an obstacle to development, especially in countries whose state budget depends on oil revenues, like Timor-Leste. What policies will your party propose to prevent corruption, including in Public Institutions and state-owned businesses?
- At present, Timor-Leste is trying hard to join ASEAN, but nearly all ASEAN countries supported Indonesia’s illegal occupation of Timor-Leste for 24 years. What will your party do to help stop human rights violations within ASEAN, such as in Burma and West Papua?
- Former President Ramos-Horta vetoed three laws about access to land, because he saw that these laws could violate the rights of ordinary people. What will your party’s policy be to protect and ensure small people’s rights to access land?
- What policy will your party propose to develop a productive, sustainable economy, such as agriculture, to reduce our economic dependence on exporting nonrenewable resources? How will you reduce imports of food and basic necessities, so that Timor-Leste can achieve economic and food sovereignty?