State visit near the end of mine

Dili Travel Blog

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Kiwi BBQ - Timor style
This month has seen us busy with arrangements for NZ's Governor General's visit which coincides with Timor Leste's 11 year independence celebrations on Thursday.  That makes this visit one of state importance and it seems most of the kiwi contingent has a job as part of the arrangements but me.  I appreciate that actually as I seem to be getting more busy as time runs out before our departure in 22 days.

Tonight we were invited to another of the Ambasadore's barbeques at his residence.  It was another pleasant evening with the kiwi family but short-lived as the programme for tomorrow is full to bursting and begins before sunrise for the security team -another reason I'm not disappointed I have not been tasked with a job!

This past two weeks I have been making great progress with the PNTL.
ANZAC relations
  I still can't believe we weren't speaking for the 3 months December to March as the friction between the two police forces became impossible but that time has well and truely passed now and it seems my colleagues from National Traffic can't get enough information from me.  With less than 2 weeks of actual work time left I am trying to schedule classroom time to pass as much of the work I have spent 11 months preparing as possible to them.  I figure if they have accepted my proposals and I can teach them how the systems work then the next Team Leader won't come in and rewrite all I've done in my time here. 

The key to developing the traffic systems in this country is continuity and the PNTL themselves are the only ones that hold that key as UNPOL come and go in 12 or even 6 month rotations.
Speeches about to begin


Last week I was invited to assist the Ministry of Infrastructure Legal advisers as they delivered the second of two lectures to the PNTL traffic officers.  I was in Australia when the first was run unfortunately but was able to add an important "police view" to the training that had been lacking.  It was a long day and seemed to be well received byt the 100 officers.

I have been working with the ladies since October last year, trying to get some action on several problems I had identified in the country's traffic legislation.  Progress is slow in this country and those issues are still not resolved.  At the end of the day the ladies expressed their regret that I was ending my mission and that my expertise and dedication would be lost to Timor Leste.
PNTL keen to start the learning
  It was nice recognition that hadn't come from anywhere else during my time here and probably more heartfelt than the medal or the certificate of commendation I have received from UNPOL.

I was also surprised when the ladies discussed at length with the Commander of the PNTL Training Centre my employment as a traffic consultant.  The conversation was in Portuguese but it was clear to me as I stood there they were discussing me.  As we left the training day they told me they had made the recommendation that the PNTL should not loose me if they could help it.  Praise indeed from these important colleagues.  I had a chuckle though, NZ Police wouldn't let me stay here to do traffic, their concern is only for Community Policing.
Lunchtime
  I was fortunate to be extended from 6 months to 12 in the first place.

Now however, I have begun the process of checking out.  My position has been advertised and I will be on the interview panel just days before I fly.  I have training sessions booked and this time next week I will be flying to parts of this beautiful country I have not been able to drive to.

I have had a blast (and would be happy to stay 12 more months if I could) but I was never going to finish the jobin 6 or even 12 months.  The rebuilding of Timor Leste will be on-going for many years to come.  I just hope there are no more backward steps like they have had in 2001, 2006 and 2008.  I guess the maths would point to this year being the test.
goezi says:
Careful there Britt I may hold you to that! Doubt I'll swing by in any sort of working capacity though -I could never relate to the fact you're all driving on the wrong side of the road!! Cheers mate, C
Posted on: May 20, 2010
goezi says:
Thank you my friends. Hopefully this young struggling country will one day be a tourist mecca and will be appreciated by everyone when they see it's beauty.

I will really miss the place and these lovely people.
Posted on: May 20, 2010
Vipin says:
informative and nicely named blog!!
Posted on: May 18, 2010
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Kiwi BBQ - Timor style
Kiwi BBQ - Timor style
ANZAC relations
ANZAC relations
Speeches about to begin
Speeches about to begin
PNTL keen to start the learning
PNTL keen to start the learning
Lunchtime
Lunchtime
Paulo grabbing 40 winks during a b…
Paulo grabbing 40 winks during a …
Presenting radar training certific…
Presenting radar training certifi…
National Traffic UNPOL before Isra…
National Traffic UNPOL before Isr…
Dili
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