LETTERS: For mud or not? The owner speaks

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“We made our own decisions based on science, our own investigations and consensus on our part, this sludge is good and perfect for our needs,” says the author of the letter, in defense of the plan. sludge disposal.

Mr. Editor,

I represent real landowners, active commercial planters, my large extended family, active commercial organic growers in Rarotonga and many Cook Islanders who are fed up with the rant published through the prism of a one-sided opinion of a few self-proclaimed experts .

Seeing this whole debacle unfold in the public arena has certainly come as a surprise to us. As landowners of the Takuvaine property, reading these articles from Thursday 13/5 – “Injunction to stop the sludge dumping”. Then on Friday 5/14 – Sludgy dilemma ‘, it’s the straw that broke the back of the camel!

We made our own decisions based on science, our own investigations and consensus on our part, this slime is good and perfect for our needs. It’s no more toxic than the sludge at the bottom of the water tanks we all have in our homes.

It is a fact that we have higher levels of polyaluminum in our river beds and soil that occur naturally and have been that way for many years before this event. Tests done before the processing plants show this to be true.

Also, for MP Selina Napa to insinuate that “we are ignorant”; her passion is misplaced and she hurts the people I care about. Negative assumptions about our actions are simply not true.

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Then to assume that we are getting paid for this sludge dumping on our property is in itself hogwash! I offered this land for free and in good faith because we know the benefits of this mud.

We have been and still are a big part of organic farming in Rarotonga. Most people know that we were among the first organic noni farms here in Rarotonga.

Here I am, still annoyed that no one has contacted me to discuss it. You stopped this process without any representation of the landowners for this land in Takuvaine, then an injunction to completely stop this process.

I would appreciate a meeting with Mr. Tai Nicholas, who would represent the landowners of the Takuvaine watershed and the proclaimed landowners of our property.

It got to a point where I needed to say something; the people were blinded in their sights and led the way to the garden.

Louis enoka

Land owner and now – representative of a number of real planters

The drama of Samoa, a warning for cooks

I wonder how many of your readers follow the political drama that is recently unfolding in Samoa and relate it to the “so what” questions I posed in a letter you posted on December 16, 2020.

In this letter, I have traced many of the abuses of the rule of law that occur here and how, in the absence of challenge, they feed on themselves and grow and assume a certain acceptability that threatens our democracy.

Samoa, for those here who care enough and can still read the danger signals, provides the Cook Islands with a palpable warning and gives real meaning to the phrase: There, but for the grace of God, go for it.

Rather than letting the constitutional and electoral process play the role of the Human Rights Protection Party (HRPP) which has ruled Samoa for over 30 years, with the same prime minister for much of it, when he is confronted with the very real possibility of defeat and the loss of office, it is to engage in highly questionable maneuvers to keep the treasury banks and, for this observer, to compromise the laws of the country as well as the neutrality of the head of state, problems which are not unknown to us here.

The lesson for us is that unless politicians are constantly held in check and aware that every deviation from the expectations we have of them to behave within the law will be exposed and punished, they quickly become a law to themselves, where Samoa seems to be right now.

Incredibly, Acting Prime Minister Tuilaepa was reported the other day that he had been ‘appointed by God’ and that the country’s judiciary had no authority over his appointment, which is where the challenge was. statement.

One wonders how many members of his own party are protesting against these outlandish claims. Few I imagine are all willing to sacrifice democracy, the rule of law, principle and integrity for their own selfish ends.

It couldn’t happen here, the naive and the blind might think, but they would laugh at themselves.

Our democracy is as fragile and vulnerable as ever. We have seen and still see signs of these same trends. I have written before and I will repeat it here – democracy is a concept largely alien to a society emerging from a feudal history and culturally programmed for unconditional obedience and loyalty to its rulers.

If you doubt this statement, ask yourself what are the consequences and costs for those who speak out?

And, conversely, what are the rewards and rewards that await those who don’t and bow to those they know could otherwise ruin their careers, businesses, and lives.

And that is, folks, the problem that we have to overcome if we are to avoid falling into a true banana republic, where Samoa seems to be heading.

And, finally, what all this demonstrates is that when politicians are busy bringing a country to its knees, how vital it is to have a strong and truly independent judiciary and law enforcement obey the law, not the politicians?

The late news is that the Supreme Court of Samoa has dismissed the head of state’s call for a new election as unconstitutional, but Tuilaepa plans to appeal.

John M Scott



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