The President of the Republic, Dr.José Ramos-Horta, launched the book “Hau Maka Futuro” (“I Am the Future”, with texts by Hanne Eide Andersen and photographs by Ken Opprann, in a ceremony held at the Presidential Palace Nicolau Lobato, in Díli.
“The development of the youth in an immediate priority of my Presidency”, says Dr. Ramos-Horta in the forward of this book, where he reminds the tragic events of the St. Cruz Massacre (1991) and the crisis in 2006.
In 1991, “our young people showed to the world that the gun of the oppressor could never silence their demands to live as people with dignity and to decide the very destiny of their Nation”, highlights the Head of State
In 2006 – adds H.E. - it was with the “indefatigable efforts” of the youth that “the Nation managed to deviate from an endless crisis”.
“The youth urges to be heard by decision makers”, avowed The Nobel Peace Prize, assuring to “redouble the effort in enabling them to be heard”, even because youth constitutes the majority of the Timorese population.
In fact, half of the Timorese population is under 18 years old.
The book “I Am the Future”, as a component of the Díli International Youth Conference on Identity and Nation Building (2008), “serves a medium for the youth to participate in the national decision making process and in the promotion of national unity for the development of the country”, affirms Dr. Ramos-Horta in the forward.
“We cannot afford to have a development style which ignores the participation of our young people (…), so we must enhance our human resources based in this reservoir of vast potential”, adds H.E.
The President applauded this Norway’s initiative, which “debunks the notion that the youth of today are passive agents in development process and are simply waiting for the State to deliver what they aspire for”.
The Foreign Affairs Minister of Norway, Mr. Jonas Gahr Store, also forwards the 180 full colour pages book, full of interviews and facts from all over the country
Attended the ceremony the Join Command Chief of the Armed Forces, Major-General Taur Matan Ruak, the Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, Miguel Manetelu, the Ambassadors from Australia, New Zealand and Republic of South Korea, as well as diplomats from the Norwegian and the Indonesian Embassies.
The ceremony was also attended by representatives of the UNPOL and ISF Command, and by the former Timorese First Lady, Kirsty Gurmao.
PPR – Dili, DEC 01ST, 2009
José H. Meirelles
International Relations/Media Senior Advisor
Presidency of the Republic
PBX : +670-333-9999/ext. 242