Bougainville Referendum News : Tanis to head up new Department for Referendum, Peace and Veteran Affairs

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The Bougainville Executive Council also resolved to appoint former President James Tanis as Acting Secretary of the newly created Department for Referendum, Peace and Veteran Affairs. 

‘With his strong networks across Bougainville, his great appreciation of the issues at stake and his high standing Bougainville, Mr Tanis will be a real asset to the ABG’s programs’

President Chief John Momis, MHR

Picture above at the recent ABG Inauguration  : Former Bougainville President James Tanis with former PNG Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare Grand Chief Sir Michael Thomas Somare, GCL, GCMG, CH, CF, KStJ, PC, MP,

The ABG is currently hosting a week-long induction program for the newly elected Members of the House of Representatives.

The induction program has highlighted the three pillars of the Bougainville Peace Agreement-weapons disposal, referendum and autonomy- must be pursued as the highest priority of the ABG in this critical period leading up to the referendum.

To this end, the Bougainville Executive Council held an urgent meeting last night and resolved to merge the current office of Bougainville Referendum into a newly formed Department for Referendum, Peace and Veteran Affairs.

The BEC is strongly of the view that linking the referendum, peace and veterans affairs together will position the ABG to move quickly and effectively on these crucial matters.

The Bougainville Executive Council also resolved to appoint former President James Tanis as Acting Secretary of the newly created Department.

‘With his strong networks across Bougainville, his great appreciation of the issues at stake and his high standing Bougainville, Mr Tanis will be a real asset to the ABG’s programs’ said the President.

The appointment is for a 6 month period. This will give time for the formal recruitment and appointment process to be undertaken for this position and a final appointment can be made.

Recent Speeches by James Tanis on the need for an education revolution

My thoughts on education

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James Tanis (patron ) Presenting a donation of Bookgainville Kindles at the Guava School in May of this Year :

I am not an expert on education; therefore I cannot offer any words about the philosophical aspects of the discipline.

Even though I am a school dropout, I never gave up hope that one day I would return to school again

If I ever I found that chance, however long I had to wait and whatever it would take me to sacrifice, I would one day be back in the classroom, hold a pen and write on paper and complete my schooling.

That has been my resolve for 25 years. After 25 years of waiting and hoping I was recently a student,studying International Affairs in the Graduate Studies, School of International Relations, College of Asia Pacific Studies (GSIA), located at the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia

I present my beliefs based on the encounters that I had during the difficult times of the Bougainville conflict.

I learnt that education was everything one would wish to have.

Wars Cannot Destroy

In a war, when you lose your friends, lose property, get stripped naked and robbed of everything, the only property you will be left will be what is safely hidden in your brain.

When you are under surprise attack in the mist of confusion, you can lose your children, and the only child you will be left will be what is hidden in your head.

After a war, either in defeat or victory, you will be disarmed; but the only weapon that will not be taken away from you is whatever you are armed with in the mind.

The only property, the friend and the weapon that will withstand all the destruction and the carnage of a war, is your education and knowledge.

If you are educated you will be preserved and sustained under all of life’s circumstances.

Education is everything a person must strive to have, to transit from war to peace, and then from peace to national restoration.

 The Cornerstone for Nation Building

I joined the Bougainville war to fight, so to protect our resources, our gold and silver so that we could become an independent nation.

It took me many long hard years to face the reality that you don’t build nations by destroying your people.

Nation building is more than just raising guerrilla armies, raising flags, writing constitutions and making declarations.

Nations are founded on people who are not only rich in natural resources but rich in education.

A nation that is founded on gold and silver will last as long as the ore lasts under the ground.

But a nation founded on human resources and a rigorous education program will survive.

A nation’s progress goes only as far as how far its citizens are educated.

Education sustains peace.

Education progresses the nation.

Education is everything a nation must possess.

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