Dili, April 7th, 2021 – His Excellency the Prime Minister, Taur Matan Ruak, deplored that some Timorese businessmen turned their phones off in order not to cooperate with the Government when the Government was asking for support to intervene in the effects of the floods that occurred on April 4th, in the capital, Díli, and that caused many damages in public and private infrastructures.
The Head of Government added that, in this difficult situation that the people and the nation faced, the businessmen should have the morality to support the nation, but they preferred to do politics and didn’t want to cooperate with the Government. In relation to this situation, the Head of Government directed the Vice-Prime Minister, the Ministry of Public Works, and National Development Agency (AND – Portuguese acronym) to identify the businessmen who showed no feelings towards the suffering that the people faced with impact of Tropical Cyclone Seroja.
This is the Prime Minister’s statement:
“On this occasion, I want to appeal to the businessmen to cooperate, because, following the situation on April 4th, they switched off their phones and did not call. At this time, I have given the order to investigate the businessmen who, instead of helping, when the nation needs it, preferred to play politics.”
“For the good of our people, for the development of our nation, we cannot do politics. Politics should be done by the people, when they choose Taur Matan Ruak, Xanana, or another. It is up to them. We must lead and serve, and the business people must support us. In a moment of emergency like this, they should support, to divert the water, the rocks, and the tree trunks, so that they do not affect our citizens. So, I ask for help from the businessmen. And I also ask the Deputy Prime Minister, the Minister of Public Works, and NDA to identify the businessmen who, in this difficult situation, did not want to cooperate. I ask businessmen to understand that business is business, politics is politics. Separate the two. Politics has its time to be done, but in a circumstance like this, you cannot mix business with politics, because people are suffering, families are suffering, they are homeless, without water, without electricity and everything is flooded with mud. This is a moment that we must strengthen our cooperation to support them.”
Last Sunday, April 4, Tropical Cyclone Seroja hit Timor-Leste, bringing heavy rain and strong wind, causing floods in the capital, Dili, and in some other areas of the territory, resulting in much damage to public and private infrastructures, such as bridges, roads, and houses, including more than 27 victims, and displaced people, who are in 12 shelter places in Dili. END/M-PMO