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APGF Green Party Presentations

Prepared by: Suresh Nautiyal, Member of the APGF Council, Member of the Global Greens Coordination & Executive

COUNTRY PRESENTATIONS

During the APGF's 2016 Study Tour in Sydney, Australia, each APGF member-party was given an opportunity to provide a 15- 20 minute presentation on their party, the country and its socio-political and economic environment followed by 10 minute-Q&A session. This was done alphabetically. The objective was to adapt learnings for use in our own countries and to share experiences so as other members of the Study Tour would learn from what other parties in their countries have done politically.

INDIA: Uttarakhand Parivartan Party (UKPP)

Presentation: ANITA NAUTIYAL (Convener, Women’s Organisation, UKPP and APGF Councillor)

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Anita Nautiyal telling about her country and her party.

The Republic of India:  

India is situated in South Asia, bordering Pakistan, Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. The country won freedom from the British on 15 August 1947 and adopted its Constitution on 26 January 1950. According to the 2011 Census, India’s population was more than 1.2-billion; making it the world's most populated democracy. Within this population Hindus constitute nearly 80 percent, Muslims more than 14 percent, Christian 2.3 percent, Sikhs 1.7 percent, Buddhists 0.7, Jains, 0.4 percent, and others 0.9 percent. India has two Houses of Parliament – the Rajya Sabha or Upper House and the Lok Sabha or Lower House. The country has a Federal Parliamentary System. The government is led by the Prime Minister, though the ceremonial Head is President. Judiciary is presided over by the Chief Justice of India.  Read more about India's Electoral System.

The State of Uttarakhand:

Uttarakhand is the 27th state of India which was created out of the state of Uttar Pradesh on 9th of November 2000 after a concerted Movement by its people. Women played a key role in this Movement. Uttarakhand is situated in the Central Himalaya bordering the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. Internationally, Uttarakhand has borders with Tibet and Nepal. With more than 53 thousand square km area, Uttarakhand ranks as the 19th largest state in the country. Population-wise, Uttarakhand is the 20th biggest state in India. The Interim Capital is located at Dehradun, which falls in the Garhwal Region of the state. Uttarakhand has a Unicameral House with 71 seats, one of these seats is reserved for a member of Christian minority. The literacy rate is about 80 percent and Sex Ratio is 963 women per 1000 men. The major languages spoken in the state are: Garhwali, Kumaoni, Jaunsari, Hindi, Nepali, Punjabi, Urdu, Sanskrit, Bengali, English and several dialects spoken by the mountain and tribal peoples. Though the state was created in the year 2000, the people still feel marginalised and neglected due to domination of the non-hill communities in the state.

The Uttarakhand Parivartan Party (UKPP) and its Constitution:

The Uttarakhand Parivartan Party was founded following a campaign of more than two years. The party adopted its Constitution, Ideology, Policy Document and Guiding Principles, drafted by a committee headed by Suresh Nautiyal,- on the day of its foundation 18 January 2009. UKPP subscribes to the Global Greens Charter or the Canberra Declaration and has even added few more Green issues to its agenda and political action.

Party structure: The UKPP has an elected body of office bearers headed by its President, Mr. PC Tewari. The main administrative function is the Secretary-General, served by Mr. Prabhat Dhyani.

The Main Features of UKPP Policies:

  1. Green political intervention and movement with the active support of the people living in the state of Uttarakhand; 
  2. Social justice and equality; 
  3. Human rights, non-violence, peace, security, humanism, mutual trust and respect for each other; 
  4. Importance of diversity in a democracy; 
  5. Ecology, environment and sustainable conservation of natural heritage; 
  6. The need to discourage globalisation, marketisation, and liberalisation in their present form.

The long-term Action Plan and Activities:

(1) to struggle for the formulation of the village government concept with the purpose to put democracy at work and that too at the village level and demolish the myth that only governments can administer;

(2) to work for the protection and conservation of the ecology and environment and natural heritage including forests, water bodies, agriculture, horticulture, and animal husbandry;

(3) to ensure women’s rights over agricultural lands and in ancestral properties. Also, to ensure that they be given status of farmers. In the absence of such status, women are denied of the government schemes extended to the men farmers;

(4) to oppose the big dams and demand for the people’s participation in the construction, maintenance and functioning of the small dams;

(5) to ensure that the marginalised, deprived, oppressed and suppressed communities such as Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Adivasis, backward categories of people hill people, workers in the unorganised sectors, daily wage earners, agricultural labourers, and other poor people etc., are empowered to enjoy their political, social, cultural, economic and other rights as human beings;

(6) to promote eco-friendly, knowledge-based and healthy tourism and discourage those tourists who have no respect for the local ethos and cultural practices and sensitivity towards ecology and environment;

(7) to promote symbiotic relationship between the human and their environment and ensure access of people to the sanctuaries and biosphere regions for their daily dependence on the natural heritage for their very survival and at the same time ensure that ecology and environment are not threatened;

(8) to promote eco-friendly public transportation system and discourage use of private vehicles as far as possible;

(9) to ensure right to food, water, shelter and employment to all irrespective of caste, creed, colour, faith, ethnicity and gender, etc.

Other Committees and Bodies: The party determined to build empowered committees and bodies for women, youth, students, labour-force, small farmers, and other groups.  Moreover, the UKPP has the determination to build the mass organisations for other marginalised communities and sections such as Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Backward people, minority communities, workers of all unorganised and organised sector, agricultural and construction labourers, daily wage earners, temporary employees in the government and other organisations, migrant labourers, displaced and uprooted people, etc.

Support Groups: UKPP is also building its Support Groups in several big cities of the country, especially where migrants of the state reside.

Office: We have our HQ based at Dehradun and have local offices in Dehradun and Almora. Other improvised offices are run by the office bearers from their residence.

Action Programmes: UKPP is of the view that ecology and the environment have the symbiotic relationship with all living beings including the humans. Therefore, one need not think of ecology and environment in isolation. Some five-six years back, the party succeeded in getting 56 Dam-projects cancelled in the state through a PIL in the High Court of the state. UKPP has been concertedly opposing big dams, land grabs, illegal mining of the rivers, deforestation, illegal constructions on the river-banks, etc. The party favours the indigenous and tribal people, minorities and other marginalised sections of society.

Another PIL of the party resulted in the formation of the Commission for Children in the state. A few years back, the party was able to get a big piece of the government land back which was illegally grabbed by a senior government official. The party launched a campaign for the dignity of labour which resulted in several people from the labour force joining the party. The campaign succeeded in having some impact on the government. The party supported the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in the 2013 Delhi Assembly election. AAP formed its first government in Delhi that year.

UKPP launched a popular movement for common health facilities to all – whether rich or poor in 2013. UKPP favours common education system for all – rich or poor and have been campaigning for the same for several years.

In 2015, the party led a movement against the Stone Crushers in the state and succeeded in getting closed two stone crushers at a place called Veerpur-Lachchhi in Nainital district of the state. This place is largely inhabited by the indigenous people. The Stone Crushing machines not only polluted the local environment, the round-the-clock movement of the ferrying trucks also disturbed the normal life of the indigenous people in the area.

The movement led to ban on the Stone Crushers but at a cost!  The UKPP Secretary-General, Prabhat Dhyani, and a prominent local journalist were attacked by the henchmen of the owners. Mr. Dhyani got fractures on his hands and was hospitalised. The party has been campaigning against the illegal land grab in Nanisar, a small place in the district of Almora. The government has framed cases against 381 people including the villagers. 12 people were put behind the bar including the party president and deputy convener of the Women’s Organisation of the party. The campaign has been led by our party president. Now, we have filed a PIL in the High Court of the state asking for the cancellation of the illegal land deal. Back home, we are still busy in this campaing, even as a campaign called “Parivartan Yatra” is continuing for the political and social change in the state.

The Tasks Ahead: The party is poised to achieve the target of 50 percent reservation at all levels – be it the party organisation or the government led by the party. So far, since its inception, the party has contested all national and state election; but has never got its candidates elected. In fact, the party has not crossed the one-percent vote mark yet. Now, we are gearing up for the Assembly election in January 2017 and we need your support – support in every sense of the word -- to win that election!

 

 

INDONESIA: Green Party of Indonesia or Partai Hijau Indonesia (PHI)

Presentation: DANIEL AWIGRA, Member PHI

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Daniel Awigra making a point. Also seen in the picture is Earnest Kolly of Solomon Islands.

Introduction: Indonesia is an Equatorial country and a member of ASEAN. Population of the country stands at 250-million with 17,000 big and small islands. The title of the presentation, Indonesia Calling, is quite meaningful. It refers to the Black Armada Tragedy dating back to 1945. In fact, the Black Armada was a glorious event in Australia's history, one of which the Australians can be very proud. After the end of war against the Japanese militarists in 1945, there were many Indonesian soldiers in Australia, waiting to return to their homeland.  They told the Australian workers, who were loading Dutch ships with war material, munitions etc., and taking Dutch soldiers to Indonesia, about their struggle for independence from the Dutch colonialism. The Australian workers immediately ceased work on loading the Dutch ships in solidarity with their new Indonesians friends, and the Dutch ships were prevented from sailing.  This was of great assistance for the struggling Indonesian independence movement, which had just declared Independence but was still fighting the Dutch armed forces.  Much of these actions happened in Sydney Harbour, a few kilometres away from here, the UTS. The workers refused to load Dutch shipping until 1960 i.e. 15 years of solidarity. So the Australian workers supported the Indonesian struggle. The workers’ union made a film about the struggle called 'Indonesia Calling'. There was also a book about it called 'Black Armada'.  Many older Indonesians, and even the young ones, remember with great fondness the support from Australian workers. Now, the title of the presentation signifies the need for Australian and APGF support in the consolidation of PHI.

Partai Hijau Indonesia and its Vision: Partai Hijau Indonesia (PHI) or Green Party of Indonesia was established in June 2012 with the vision of sustaining life, living sustainably that will build a new political block in Indonesia and devoting its efforts to the protection of environment, human rights and against corruption. PHI has decided to participate in the next 2019 election. Currently, PHI -- under the leadership of John Muhammad -- has approximately 700 members spread over some 30 provinces in the country. Total claimed membership of the party is 673 and verified members are 518. Some people seem to be with us but they actually want to join other parties. Law requires that at least 30 percent of the membership should be females. The presence of the party has to be in all the provinces. Now, the party’s focus is on developing constitution. Most members of the party are young i.e below 40.

The party believes in

  1. sustaining life, living sustainably (Bersih, Adil dan Lestari);
  2. building a new block of Equatorial countries;
  3. integrating digital society and movement in Indonesia;
  4. transforming fossil energy into renewable one;
  5. introducing green politic into the ASEAN region.

These goals have to be achieved as we live in the same earth and the earth is one. We live together. They are us, with all diversity that we have. We are equal.  In the same spirit, Indonesia deserves equal position.

Challenges: PHI has several challenges like any emerging political party. The main challenges include meeting the electoral criteria governed by the Political Party and Mass Organisation Law. Another dimension of this challenge is to get PHI registered before 29th of July 2016 so as to be able to contest the 2019 election. In a nutshell, PHI has great challenges but the party has the determination to overcome these hurdles.  Read more about Indonesia's election system.

Way Forward: Today, the party wants to invite all Greens in developing an international support mechanism for the establishment of Indonesia Green Party. Therefore, the honest proposal is: Indonesia is calling you! Also, we want to register as a member of APGF.

 

JAPAN: Greens Japan

Presentation: RIKIYA ADACHI (Senior leader of Greens Japan and APGF Councillor)

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Rikiya Adachi is surrounded by the Indian delegates.

Introduction: The Greens Japan has 600 members and an equal number of volunteers and supporters. Party has been successful in getting its members elected at the local level. This is the only achievement so far. The party has no MPs in Parliament. In last election, the party forfeited the deposits as the candidates got 4,60,000 votes which were less than 0.5 percent of the totalled votes polled.  Read more about Japan's election system.

Challenges: Greens Japan has several hurdles and challenges in the present form of democracy and political system in Japan. It is rather difficult to get a political party registered in Japan. According to the rules, a party must have more than five MPs or must get more than 2 percent of the total valid votes if it wanted to register as a political party. And, such a party must field at least ten candidates in the election. And, fielding one candidate meant AU$70,000 as deposit. The deposit is forfeited if the candidate does not win.

In this scenario, only the existing parties or the rich can enjoy the electoral politics. The primary goal of Greens Japan is to get the party registered with the competent authority and win at least 2 percent of the total valid votes. There is a need to democratise the electoral system in the country. The height of mockery is that the number of days for campaigning are restricted to 17 only and door-to-door campaigning is prohibited in the country. Even the number and types of posters and flyers are restricted. Ten candidates must get more than 1,500,000 votes to get one seat in the proportional election and must get more than 2 percent of the polled votes to get electoral financial support.

To achieve all this is not impossible for the Greens in Japan but obviously very difficult and hard to achieve. Besides, human resource is a problem for the party as a very few persons have to do all the works, practically everything. Greens Japan has not much capacity as a political party; neither has it had several members willing to be candidates in the elections. Challenges also include a few more points like: there is no significant increase in the membership, lack of human resource, eternal scarcity of funds and monetary resources, difficulty in decentralising the functioning of the oganisation, lack of long-term strategy, etc.

 

LEBANON: Lebanon Green Party

Presentation: NAJAH JAROUSH (Member of LGP)

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Najah Jaroush of LGP making her point during her party presentation.

Introduction: Lebanon, the land of cedars, gained Independence from France in 1943. Lebanon is a rich country, though facing everything -- from peace to war. The country is advanced as it is close to Europe and the sea; however is in the grip of complete turmoil. Laws are very weak, and the private sector has practically overtaken everything. Due to this, more Lebanese people live outside Lebanon. Wheat has been the main harvest but now several grains and vegetable are grown. The political system in the country is complicated and the culture of corruption is rampant. Refugee problem is among the gravest problems. In the whole Arab world, Lebanon is the only country where a woman has become president of a political party for the first time.

Lebanon Green Party: Lebanon Green Party was established in 2008 and today it has approximately a thousand members. The ten Principles of the party advocate the oneness of man and nature. The party’s motto is: Join before geography becomes history! The party has a 12-member Political Board and three components are under it: Executive Council, National Council and Programme Coordination. The vision of the party is to have a secular country hat adopts sustainable development of its national treasures.  The party is preparing for the 2017 parliamentary election and encouraging women to join the organisation. The party is also in touch with several organisations with the purpose to expand it horizontally as well as vertically.

 

MONGOLIA: Mongolian Green Party

Presentation: DEEG DELANTAI (Leader Young Greens)

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Deeg Delantain in a thoughtful mood. A contemplative Ken is also seen in the picture.

Introduction: Mongolia has now ended the 70-year Socialist rule and stepped into the democratic political system. In other words, the country is a Democratic Republic today and it has 24 registered political parties. Most of Mongolia remains untouched by the so-called modern development. The country is very beautiful with great history. It used to have the largest empire on the earth once upon a time. In country, 43 percent people live in the cities and the rural people live on the outskirts of the cities where bad living conditions exist. The government has allocated 20 percent of the land for explorations and mining of copper, gold, uranium, iron, and several other minerals. Mining is a big problem in the country as well. Environmental pollution and social justice issues are prominent. The government and bbig parties are pro-mining.

Mongolian Green Party: The Mongolian Green Party is the very first green party in Asia. It was established on March 9, 1990. The party has won only one seat so far. Now, the goal is to create a structured party and have a good constitution based on democracy and transparency. In a nutshell, we are trying to make the Mongolian Green Party a reliable and dependable party. This dream will definitely come true in near future!

 

NEPAL: Nepali Greens

Presentation: BALLAV TIMALSINA (Joint Secretary/ International Communication Coordinator, Nepali Greens and APGF Councillor)

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Ballav Timalsina seen with Michelle Sheather  and his Nepali Greens colleague Ms. Sheelu Adhikari.

Introduction: After almost 240 years of monarchy, Nepal, with 26.5-million people, became Republic on May 28, 2008. Now, Now, the country has a federal democratic government in place. More than 50 thousand people died during the Maoist insurgency that resulted in the exit of monarchy. However, the political turmoil continues in the country. The reasons are multiple. As a result, new provinces have not been christened; therefore, they are termed as one, two, three, four, five and so on. The country has 102 ethnic groups and 123 official languages. Nepali is the national language. It has a multi-cultural composition of society. Parliament has 601 MPs – 335 of them elected through proportionate vote and 26 are nominated and 240 through simple majority – first-past-the-post. Today, three women are at the top – President, Speaker and Chief Justice of Nepal. In the national Lower House, 60 seats are reserved for women and ten seats reserved for the religious minorities. For women, 33 percent seats are reserved both at the federal and state level parliaments.  Read more about Nepal's electoral system.

Nepali Greens: The party neither has an office not its membership based has increased for last two years. The National Farmers’ Forum is a part of the party. The party is in favour of referendum on the federal and secular system in the country.



PAKISTAN: Pakistan Green Party

Presentation: SAIMA GUL (Female Co-leader, Young Greens PGP)

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Saima Gul wants to forget the boiling temperature of her home town in Pakistan.

Introduction: Prior to independence in 1947, the territory of modern Pakistan was a part of the British Indian Empire. Pakistan's political history began with the birth of the All India Muslim League in 1906. On 29 December 1930, philosopher Sir Muhammad Iqbal called for an autonomous new state in "northwestern India for Indian Muslims”. Eventually, a successful movement led by Jinnah resulted in the partition of India and independence from Britain, on 14 August 1947. With an area of 796,095 km2 (307,374 sq mi), Pakistan is the 36th largest country in the world. There are four Provinces -- Sindh, Punjab, KPK, Baluchistan and one autonomous state, Azad Kashmir in the country.

Population of the country is 191.71-million with which Pakistan is the sixth most populous country in the world. The literacy rate in the country is only 64% and GDP stands at per capeta US$1,275.30 ‎(2013). The national language is Urdu, however other major spoken languages are: Punjabi (48%) Sindhi (12%), Saraiki (10%), Pashtu (8%), Urdu (official and only 8%), Balochi (3%), Hindko (2%), Brahui (1%), and others (8%).

From 1947 to 1973, the country had a unicameral system, but under the 1973 Constitution Pakistan adopted a bicameral federal legislature, called Parliament, composed of the Senate (Upper House) and the National Assembly (Lower House). National Assembly Members are elected directly while Senate Members are chosen by elected provincial legislators. The head of government, the Prime Minister, is elected by the majority members of the National Assembly. The Head of State, the President, is elected by the Electoral College, which consists of both houses of Parliament together with the four provincial assemblies. The Parliament of Pakistan, officially termed the Majlis-e-Shoora is the federal and supreme legislative body of Pakistan. The National Assembly is elected for a five-year term, while Senate Members elected for a four-years term. The voting system is “First-Past-the-Post” system/Majoritarian. The National Assembly has 342 seats, 272 of which are directly elected, 60 are reserved for women and a further 10 for religious minorities. There are 104 Senator in Senate of Pakistan. Next national election is scheduled in 2018.

Pakistan Green Party: Pakistan Green Party (PGP) was founded in 2002 after Berlin Congress. Ten basic values or policy positions of the party include: Grassroots democracy, social justice and equal opportunity, ecological wisdom, non-violence, decentralisation of authority by ensuring power to the people, community-based economics and economic justice, gender equity, respect for diversity, and personal and global responsibility. In 2015 election, the Pakistan Green Party advanced more than 100 candidates in election across the country. However, none of them got success in the election.

Challenges: All major parties are in favour of large dams, which are not suitable for people and environment. Pakistan is an energy-deficit country. Rising temperature due to climate change is another problem. Last year more than 1,000 people died in Karachi due to heatstroke. Water pollution is also a big problem due to raw sewage and industrial wastes. On top of this, there are limited natural fresh water resources, as a result of which majority of population does not have access to potable water.

Way Forward: PGP is preparing for the next election in 2018 and building systems, continuing the proportional representation campaign, establishing national party office, and raising the membership to 10,000-mark.


PHILIPPINES: Partido Kalikasan or Greens Philippines

Presentation: GUIA LIMPIN (APGF Councillor)

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Guia Limpin is seen here making her speech in a conference room.

Introduction: The Philippines has one time zone despite the fact that the country has seveal islands. It has several lakes and rivers. The country has nickel, copper, gold, silver as minerals and rice, corn, banana, pine apples as food items. It has lush-green forests and has 2400 fish species. In the Philippines, revolution took place in 1898.

Partido Kalikasan: The Green party in the Philippines is called Partido Kalikasan or Greens Philippines (Green PH). It is spread all over the country, which have three island groups. The party has 5,689 members and 3,435 supporters. The national convention of the party was held in 2003. Party’s ideology is based on the principles of ecological integrity, social justice, national solidarity, active non-violence, participatory democracy, etc. Partido Kalikasan organised its second national convention in Bagio after APGF NZ Congress in 2015. It has yet to register as a political party. However, the plans are afoot to contest the 2019 election.  The party has a national office and an institute called the Green Governance Institute of the Philippines. There are several other groups and parties claiming to be Green parties in the Philippines but they do not adhere to the non-violence.


PNG: Papua New Guinea Green Party

Presentation: ANDREW KUTAPAE (General Secretary, PNG Green Party)

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Andrew Kutapae seen with Ade.

Introduction: Papua New Guinea is an Oceanic country that occupies the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and its offshore islands in Melanesia, a region of the southwestern Pacific Ocean north of Australia. Its capital, located along its south-eastern coast, is Port Moresby. The western half of New Guinea forms the Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Papua.

Papua New Guinea: PNG is one of the most culturally countries in the world; 852 languages are listed for the country, of which 12 have no known living speakers. Most of the population of over 7-million people live in customary communities, which are as diverse as the languages. It is also one of the most rural, as only 18 percent of its people live in urban centres. The country is one of the world's least explored, culturally and geographically; many undiscovered species of plants and animals are thought to exist in the interior, as well as groups of the uncounted people. Papua New Guinea’s mining and resource sector led to the country becoming the sixth fastest-growing economy in the world in 2011.Mining remains a major economic factor and a big issue.

At the national level, after being ruled by three external powers since 1884, Papua New Guinea established its sovereignty in 1975 following almost 60 years of Australian administration. It became a separate Commonwealth Realm and became a member of the Commonwealth of Nations in its own right. In PNG, there is IPCC (Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates Commission) to supervise the political parties.

Any citizen is eligible to contest election in PNG. Right now, one woman is governor in the country. PNG has a 111-member Parliament. However, one needs millions of dollars in her/his pocket to win an election. In PNG politics, only registered parties are allowed to contest the elections. Also, the aspirant parties have to comply with the conditions that are mandatory for being a political party. As per law, 10 percent seats are reserved for the women, which mean only 10 seats in the 100-member House. Proportionally, it is 9:1.

Human rights are a big issue in the PNG. Independence to West Papua is also an issue. However, Indonesia won’t allow West Papua to cede from its domain. It is because the area is mineral rich. In fact, whole of PNG is full of resources, though being destroyed by mining.

PNG Green Party: The PNG Green Party was established in 2001. It is a registered party and recognised by the PNG Government. When the party was registered, less money was required to do so. In 2003, I came to know about the green parties. A lady from PNG, Dorothy, participated in the APGN Taiwan Congress in 2010. After she returned from there, contacted me. Subsequently, I resigned from my job and joined the party and the political process moved ahead. Later, Bob Brown visited PNG to take part in our party convention. In 2012, we elected our national executive. Dorothy was elected President of the party and I was elected General Secretary. In 2012, we endorsed 11 candidates but none of them won the election. As regards Dorothy, she is the life-time member of the PNG Green Party and special advisor to the party. She had resigned from her post for the sake of election. Now, she will contest the 2017 election.

The party is committed to the socio-political and economic change and wants to eradicate the social evils and establish the grassroots democracy. Now, we are looking forward to the 2017-election. We have more than 500 members. The party members are supposed to pay the annual membership fee but they are not paying. Party has no MPs as yet in Parliament. Whatsoever, the PNG Green Party will overcome the difficulties and establish itself as a representative Green party in near future!


SOLOMON ISLANDS: Green Party of Solomon Islands

Presentation: HELEN MARAU AND ERNEST KOLLY President, GPSI)

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Helen Marau in sun glasses sitting next to Saima Gul.

Introduction: Solomon Islands, was discovered for the world by Spanish explorer Alvaro De Mendana in 1568. The islands in the country are scattered and remote. Solomon Islands gained Independence on 7th of July 1978. It has tropical summer round the year. With nine provinces, the country has a population of 642,000 people. Like several other countries, Solomon Islands is facing ecological threats – mining and logging being the major issues. The famous mangroves in the country have been destroyed by the logging companies.  Solomon Islands has the Westminster System of governance. The political party culture and system is not very strong in the country. Several parties come up like mushrooms before the election and die down after the election.

Green Party of Solomon Islands: Green Party of Solomon Islands (GPSI) is an emerging party, which was started in 2011. Right now, the party was registered under the Solomon Islands Charitable Act on 26th of January 2012 and first convention was held on 28-29 January 2012. The second convention was held on 1th of May 2013. At this, GPSI Constitution was adopted. Earnest Kolly is the President of the party and there are more than 50 members with a gender balance. The party has not yet been registered as a political party.

Achievements: Achievements of the party include: We were able to make GPSI Constitution in 2013. The party stood on the third place in one election.

Challenges: There are several challenges ahead. First of all, there is a lack of commitment from the executive members of the party. There is no office, therefore, lack of space as well. The party has to pass through the Political Integrity Act to get registered as a political party. We need at least 250 members to get GPSI registered as a political party.

Way Forward: to register GPSI as a political party under the new Political Integrity Act, reach out to the rural areas where 80 percent of the population lives, to contest the 2018 election in all 50 constituencies, establish the party in all nine provinces, get Full Membership of APGF. The party has the plans to raise money locally. In the meanwhile, it is ready to receive the APGF fact finding mission as soon as AU/APGF funding is approved.

 

TAIWAN: Green Party Taiwan

Presentation: ROBIN WINKLER (APGF Councillor) and DORA TSAI (GPT Member)

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Robin Winkler seen here with Andrew Kutapae of PNG.

Introduction: Taiwan or the Republic of China (Taipei) has a long indigenous tradition. Two-thirds of the island country is mountainous and has a population of only 23-million people. There are eight indigenous legislators. The political parties get the federal funding but a party has to achieve the target of at least 3 percent of the total valid votes. The system is both – first-past-the-post as well as proportional. Taiwan has diplomatic relations with only 22 countries including Germany and not India. According to the Austronesia theory, all the languages originated in Taiwan.

Green Party Taiwan: The green party in Taiwan was founded in 1996, twenty years back. It has 500 members with four local branches. The green party contested the last election with the Social Democratic Party but the people are now sceptical about this arrangement.  

The party has young volunteers and are known as protestors. The volunteers launch the election campaigns for the party candidates and reached out to the voters – using various electoral tools such as distributing leaflets, talking to the people, etc.

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