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March 03, 2009

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Wow! Mr.Copeland,

Your a nice guy....
After threats were made to OTV's Management and now this one, you are still a nice guy.....

Probably love your job too much to piss off some Senator's....

At least we know what kind of a person you are now....

man, this is 2 much. how does OTV deal with the pressure? i commend them in hanging in there because they will ultimately prevail if they are able to hole on.

Is it in legal for a public figure to have such control over the media? Diaz shouldn't even be in the media!

Good Morning to All:

With all due respect to all of you here and most especially to you Omdui, I have read so much and so much has been said here about Diaz having violated the ethics code and what not. Let me ask all of you these questions: What is to be said about the other 4 Senators who also signed off on the Bill? What are their roles and their own accountabilities in this mess? And, by the way Omdui, need to work on the heading. It is a bit misleading in that, it appears that SP was careful enough to use the word "may," not to mention that it was not only Diaz alone. As I mentioned earlier, there were 4 other Senators. In other words, as the saying goes, let us call a spade a spade!

Having said the above, I would be very interested to know anyone's thoughts about how Marianas Variety presented the SP's letter as compared to how OTV did its presentation of the same letter, both to the us the general public.

In all, I think we are all in "NEED" of some fairness and we (as the court of public opinions) can start by applying the laws equally to all, not selectively.

Sulang.....

Brien Sers Nicholas

Brien,

i would alos like to know your opinion on these very quesitons you have posed. since you are a practicing attorney and also ran for Oek, give us your view on this matter. what course of action would you have taken and would you have signed on this bill like the other senators?

thanks,

Manny Obong

Manny, Ollei, wait a minute. I did asked the questions first. But, fair is fair I guess. So here it goes:

On the bill and don't mean to sound like a Monday morning Quaterback, I would not have sign it, support it, etc. etc. Aside from ethics questions, I figure, the Senate is a Senate of OEK for the Republic of Palau. Thus, it must and should always concerns itself with general issues for the better of our Republic and her People.

On the prosecution of any alleged violations of the ethics code (if that is what you also anticipated), I happen to agree with SP's approach. This particular issue is an issue that, in my opinion, affected the Senate as a WHOLE. Thus, SP communicating with the Senate President to offer his help is a good way of resolving it so it will not happen in the future and we move on. Criminal prosecution in this case should only be the last resort. Everyone working to better the system, so to speak, is a good start.

Hope I have answered my own questions to your content. Now, your turn.....

Sulang,

Brien Sers Nicholas

haven't heard the diaz spin zone on how he has no conflict on a bill that would make his company the tv monopoly but frankly nothing of the truth comes out of that guys mouth so it is nearly irrelevant what he says one day because the next day he can have an entirely new "reality".

so far otv has been pretty straight. i heard otv's report on this and it sounded spot on. i read the letter myself and it said that the senate pres has 10 days to do its own in house cleaning on this conflict of interest matter. i think otv reported that the SP gave the senate 10 days to take remedial action. i think the SP's letter made it clear that the SP was positioned to prosecute and has the grounds to do so ... i think otv said that as well. otv's report was pretty short and did not overstate the SP's letter and in fact, i think they understated the gravity of this conduct. it is not only about shutting down otv it is about no competition against a sitting government official unless you want to be bullied to death and the end of a chance for palau to continue to grow as a democracy.


what a way to start the 8th OEK.

brien wish you were sitting in there now bro because this is pathetic.

i heard diaz got back from Yap and now is gonna "unauthor" the bill. what does that mean brien? can he just take his name off like that and the matter is over? don't they need to pull the bill and start again.

as for the others who signed it (and may not have read that one provision that has stirred up the controversy) .... they can sign if they want to as long as they are not signing a bill that puts money indirectly or directly in their pocket. diaz is the only one who violated the law. the rest just are stuck looking like they did not do their homework.

yeah, i think otv was fair, but hey, aren't they the victims here???
diaz's actions are unacceptable. wait. i mean illegal.

the people gotta send that message to him...maybe on his show "alii diaz". this is so crazy -- we gotta call the Senator on a tv help line to tell him he is nuts while he advises us on our love lives???? johnson, somebody, help!

has any of these "haolies" oh yes i called them haolies, ever thank Mr. Diaz for his 24 years of service in the US military so they can have the freedom and balls to run there business on the island.

Can you define freedom?

So what are you gonna do about, take him to court and loose the case like the Pension cases.......!

Hold on to your horses guys,

Will this Bill really kill OTV and eliminate the only local TV competition in Palau ?

OTV is partly owned by Palauans and my understanding is the proposed Bill deals with foreign owned TV stations.

So the issue to be resolved here is "wholely owned" or "partly owned" by foreigners.

Someone please shed some light on this because this may clarify the argument that Diaz's Bill eliminates competition.

Secondly, if entire people of Palau benefit from this Bill, aside from Diaz as the sole owner of WWFM, then the test of Conflict of Interest can be resolved.

Help !


Even if OTV never existed while Diaz still owned a radio station/tv station, it would still be a conflict of interest and a violation of the ethics code.

The point is that he blatantly authored a bill that would directly benefit himself.

This is like a Johnny Reklai authoring a banking bill. Look where that got us.

Hello bloggers, so JUDGMENT AGAINST DIAZ CAME OUT TODAY, HE MUST PAY $4,000 TO THIS GUY WHICH HE AND ALLAN SEID ATTACKED AT DROP OFF, BY JAN. 1, 2010. ITS DEFAMATION! AND NOW FOUR (4) MORE DEFAMATION CASES STILL COMING, I JUST WONDER HOW MUCH MONEY WILL HE END UP PAYING, MAYBE CLOSE TO $50,000.00, OUCH!

LETS WAIT AND SEE ... THERES AN END TO ANYTHING AND THE ALMIGHTY IS WATCHING AND SO BOL KLOU A RENGMIU AND PRAY ...

TRUTH WILL PREVAIL!!!!


Brian,

That is a very good point. If Diaz did not do his
homework on the code of ethics. What about the
other four?

Does this mean that the others did not know either?

Is this the kind of caliber we have for Senators in island?


Mesulang,

you might consider that the us gov't is takin care of any and all thank you's to diaz with that paycheck he brags about for his retirement.

on another note, his conduct since is rather unpatriotic to his own country (since he gave up his us citizenship) as he stains our name, continually.

can we pawn him back off to US or Saipan?

OhEhKonflict, here is a line that was put out by OTV regarding the SP's letter, i.e., "The Special Prosecutor has given the Senate until March 5, 2009 to take remedial action." Got it straight from the OTV site. I read the Marianas Variety's writing re. SP's letter and did not find anything along the same line. To the contrary, it appeared from the Marianas Variety article that SP was very much respectfull of the Senate body, which should be the case. You compare and decide....

On to your questions regarding "unauthoring," never heard of such a thing. The thing with criminal law, just like anyting in life, once you have acted, you can not undo your own actions or the consequences thereof. In other words, the deed is done! But, my take of it based on what the SP had mentioned to the Marianas Variety, it appears to be now a none issue as the SP is interested in helping the Senate as a whole, which I think is a good thing.
Let us hope it does not happen again. And, by the way, fitting name I must say. It made me laugh when I saw it.

Sulang...

Brien Sers Nicholas

Mossisecheklak, why are you asking such difficult questions? Just kidding....Man, it is so tempting to try and answer them but, like Omdui had said, we must always show "respect" and "restraint." So, if I may with all due respect, lets hold off answering your questions until the next election. What do you say?

Sulang...

Brien Sers Nicholas

LOL! I can see you are looking forward for the next election. And I am behind you 110%...

Mesulang,

What a laugh trip. How obvious can Diaz get? Definitely not becoming of a senator whom is supposed to be protecting our interests as a whole. I praise Otv and hope that they prevail over these greedy eyed monsters that hang out in the OEK. Why can't we praise those that are making progress instead of trying to pull them down?

You know what a friend of mine calls us Palauans now? Haters. Lol!

Are we really?

Brien,

otv was correct.

but, sounds like you still haven't read the letter dated feb 23, here is the relevant language:

". . . One of the sponsors of this Bill is reported to have a financial interest in its’ passage, in as much as he is alleged to have an ownership interest in a radio and television station, and the passage of this bill may eliminate his only competition in his market. Later, that Senator is reported to have voted for the Bill’s adoption.

"33 PNCA § 604 (a) prohibits a Senator from using his or her government position to attempt to influence any official action where it is reasonably foreseeable that the action could have a material financial effect on that Senator. Thus, it is prohibited by law for a Senator to introduce, vote on, or present argument for a Bill that he knows or should know would materially financially effect him or her. A violation of this law is a misdemeanor, and in addition to other penalties, a fine of up to $10,000 may be imposed for each violation. Further, a violation of this act may serve as a predicate offense for the crime of Misconduct in Public Office, a violation of 17 PNCA § 2301, and subject the Senator to the risk of imprisonment for a period of not more than ten years, or a fine of not more than $10,000.00, or both . . ."

. . .
"I hope you will consider the above proposal. If you will agree to meet with me to discuss this matter, please contact my office within 10 days of receipt of this letter. Otherwise I will assume you are not interest in this offer and act accordingly."

glad i made you chuckle.

we all want to see that the letter results in better behavior. seems the senate has no choice but to take the olive branch offered.

Brien,

clearly this is a classic case of conflict of interest on the part of Sen. Diaz, now the other senators who went along, one of them is an attorney himself, Sen. Oilouch, and so i wonder why he did not see this coming? or was he strong-armed to go along?

i also agree that this is not good for the republic as whole. the message of this bill is this: INVESTORS WELCOME AS LONG AS YOU DON'T COMPETE WITH OUR POLITICIANS/BUSINESSMEN OR THEY WILL LEGISLATE YOU OUT ANYTIME!

sulang,

Manny

Mossisecheklak, ungil tutau...Now, wait, wait, wait just a minute! Next election? I still need to get this residency thing squared away. By the way, now in the Supreme Court and that should be fun. We still need to make sure that either I am a Resident of Ngeaur or a Resident of Palau. As things stands right, it appears that I cannot be both. Hoping to have an answer soon. Will definitely keep you, and everyone here, updated.

Sulang and have a great day...

Brien Sers Nicholas

OhEhKonflict, let me start by saying that I am glad we are having this exchange. Now, on having read the letter, I have not. I do have every intention of reading it once I get to Palau tomorrow. Be that as it may, the content of the letter has been reported/discussed widely so, for my purposes, I think I have enough. My purposes are being the following:

1. It is interesting to note that the contents of the very same letter, as reported by 2 different medias, can be so markedly different.

2. And, this is the one that I am really trying to get accross here. That is, who is the SP to put the "WHOLE SENATE" in such a predicament simply because 1 (not all 5) may have not acted accordingly? You said it, "seems the senate has no choice but to take the olive branch offered." For the SP to threaten prosecution of 1 (but not all 5) unless the "WHOLE SENATE" takes him up on his "offer" is not right. If he, the SP, thinks that by offering to help the "WHOLE SENATE" is a good thing, then by all means do it cleanly. If, on the other hand, he (the SP) still has any thoughts of prosecution, then do it and leave the "WHOLE SENATE" out of it. As I have said before, the decision to prosecute rest with him, the SP, and no one else. Again, it is not right nor warranted that the "WHOLE SENATE" is held hostage, so to speak, simply because of the actions of some of its members. Mind you, this is the "SENATE" of the Government of the Republic of Palau, no different then the "SENATE" for the Government of the United States. Somewhere along the way, regardless of the actions of its members, the "SENATE" as a governmental institution must be "RESPECTED," no different then the House of Delegates and the Office of the President.

OhEhKonflict, please do understand, I have nothing personal against the SP. Heck, I do not even know the guy. What I have a problem with is things are being done with the "WHOLE SENATE" being placed in a corner. The SP cannot, as the saying goes, have his bettlenut and chews it at the same time in this case. And, I am totally with you on hoping that, with what is going on, better actions/behaviours will be forth coming in the future.

Please, do let me know what your thoughts are because of my comments.

Sulang and have a great day.

Brien Sers Nicholas

Manny, good morning...I hear you loud and clear. Not good, not good at all!! Let us hope that it does not become a reality down the line.

Sulang and have a great day....

Brien Sers Nicholas

Mr. Nicholas:
Hafa Adai. I have been reading your posts and find you views quite interesting.

This last post, and in reading the letter (SP's), I have come to the conclusion that the SP may be simply letting the others know that everyone is being looked at in regards to conflicts of interest that violate the Code of Ethics. I saw this guys confirmation hearing and he did say that he would (paraphrasing) like to give people time to understand that things that they have done in the past were not lawful and to make corrections for the better; this was in response to Senator Ada's question.

I think this is just the SP's way of stating the obvious and finally putting our leaders to task for being irresponsible. However, I would disagree with you that the "whole" of the Senate will be prosecuted or are being put in a corner. The other Senators that co-sponsored and signed the bill do not have financial interests in the media, as far as I know. Just because they co-authored or co-sponsored a bill doesn't mean they violated the ethics act.

Someone here has said that it is up to the Senate President to make sure that his house is in order - I agree. My other Senators that I voted for should have also stepped up and asked Diaz to remove himself from any action on this bill. That would be the responsible thing to do, in my view.

What do you think? By the way, you need to get going on your residency...or wait, the Election Commission may be dissolved by next elections so you may not have to worry too much.

Thanks for your comments on this issue and I'll be interested to see your response on this.

the point of my response was to let you know that I read the letter and thought otv was fair to report the 10 day hammer .... and generally its news reporting so far seems accurate. it better stay that way as they cannot afford to mislead the public. only diaz has that option. i think the 10 days is the driving force of whatever immediate action might be taken by the Senate.

if i did not say it earlier: despite the threat and the fact that diaz was caught with his hand in the cookie jar, the tone of the letter was also reasonable. but heck, the SP had all the cards so why yell too loud or pound too hard. he won the battle with just informing everyone that a law exists that was broken and they had 10 days to do something, anything.

as for YOUR point, you are 100% right. the SP is using diaz's error to motivate the whole lot ...

is this good or fair ... you decide.

i prefer to look at it like this: diaz was the credentials chair begging his fellow senators not to look at a candidate's credentials even in the face of a pretty serious forgery charge ... the guy doesn't mind taking everyone down with him and unfortunately it seems he usually gets at least one passenger, mlib, and in this case, a few others, who are still unsuspecting that diaz is on a suicide mission. i think of him as the palauan version of a suicide bomber as he would blow himself up just to take down otv. he sees otv beating him at his own game in his own country. but that is only in his mind, they are just competition, but maybe he cannot bear to share the stage .... so my point is that anyone who gets too close to him should watch out.

This morning Diaz commented on this whole conflict of issue deal and he said something to the effect of "the senators by consitutional law have the right to say, discuss, etc on anything on the senate floor" and "no one from california or tokyo or anywhere not palauan has the right to tell me what to say"....is this not so very misleading? and the sad fact is, there are many palauans who have no access to "news" other then his radio station and they believe him 100%. someone once brought it up that diaz has so much opportunity to do good, to bring up his fellow country men to a higher level but all he seems to want to do is bring them down (to his level or lower?) sad...and Omdui, thanks for moderating, first time in awhile that i can read something as controversial as diaz and not have to read between the foul words...

Mardingaol, always, always a pleasure to hear from you and read your comments. Same holds true for Mossisecheklak as well. Now, let's take your comments in reverse.

On the potential dissolution of the Election Commission [EC], does that mean the residency laws go out the door as well? Just kidding...with my residency, contrary to the popular belief, Elvis NEVER LEFT the building. Yes, it is still on the go with us having filed our opening brief with the Supreme Court. We are waiting to see the EC's response brief.

On to the issue at hand, it sure looks to me like the whole Senate is in a predicatment. That is, if the Senate as a whole does not take SP up on his offer and he proceeds to prosecute (not the whole Senate), what is going to happen? Wouldn't that just create more divisions within the Senate itself and what not? Is this healthy for us as a Republic and, most especially, at these times of hard economic choices facing us? And, I could not agree with your statement more about SP giving time for people to understand. Yes, once in a while, we all have lapse of better judgment. If SP can assist the Senators to better uderstand the ethics code, I am all for it. My discomfort is when there is/are condition(s) attach. Again, my concern is not the individual Senators but, rather, the whole Senate as a govermental institution and the respect that is to be accorded it as such.

On what would be the responsible thing to do, I do believe each of the elected Senators are very much capable of making such decisions. And, as a Voter like you, I would really want to see them all work together and, if one of them slips, pick him/her up and move on. And, as the saying goes, can't we all get along?

Sulang and have a nice day...

Brien Sers Nicholas

OhEhKonflict, when I read the Marianas Variety article regarding SP's letter, it did sound very reasonable. In fact, SP's responses to inquiries regarding his letter further made the intent of his letter that much more reasonable. But you may be right, may be we are just beating up on what is essentially now a dead issue vis a vis how the letter was published to the public.

In any case, nice to be exchanging our views on this issue.

Sulang...

Brien Sers Nicholas

i want to have diazs baby...so many losers in here especially the one who ran for senator haha...you really think palauans are dumb so you could just live your life abroad and walk in to palau to become a senator? it will never happen...you got to earn your stripes in belau first! your a lawyer you should be smarter than that! palauans are not that dump!

I wonder wat Stripes your talking about belauangel? Palauans are actually smarter than you think. VP Chin is proof to that. When he ran for Senator, he was the top vote getter. It was only a matter of Citizenship that kept him from OEK.

I am very sure that with Brian's case, he will clear all necessary qualifications before he runs. And when he does people will be smart enough to pick him based on Education, Experience and New Idea's that is greatly needed in our island today. He will not disappoint and that I can guarantee....


And to start with "I want to have Diaz's baby" makes one wonder about your mental stage.

Mesulang,

Belauangal,

It's dumb. Not dump. LOL!

By the way guys, am really enjoying the conversation. Nice to read real 'talk' and not just word bashing. I hope this time Diaz will see the bigger picture and stop poisoning our fellow Palauan's minds with his garbage. His radio show is more of a gossip show then reporting the news. He is a classic example of why we need people like you guys, (Mardi, Mosi, Brien) to help boot the crippled out of office so we can progress.

Viva Otv!

Hey Diaz, is it true that you acquired your radio skills in the military because you were too afraid to operate heavy machinery?

Diaz is the Man!!!

Oh, and another thing, CBS stole MBTV's logo, they just erased the pupil.

Diaz should definetly sue.

me too, i am really learning a lot from Santy, Brien, Mosi, Mardingaol, Green Order and others. thanks Omdui for this site..

Santy, all the talks about you being a broken record is nothing but BS. you are the reason i keep coming back to this site all because you ain't sold out yet. keep blogging my friend...it's me again, your former upward bound student.

Good evening Mosi...what can I say but to once again thank you and bow my head in respect.

Sulang and have a nice evening...

Brien Sers Nicholas

Lady Lallou and Domfree, I think we can all agree that Omdiu is doing all of us a huge favor with this site and the best way to thank him is to read/talk "real" talk here, all the while learning from one another. Otherwise, if we do not, I think he will just be wasting his time moderating this site and that is not fair to him.

Sulang,

Brien Sers Nicholas

agree, agree, real talk bloggers! sources say the senate spent the day workin' TOGETHER on improved policies to avoid such conflict cases in the future. encouraging indeed except that it diaz drama does absorb a disproportionate amount of time.

OhEhKonflict, good morning. Now, that is GOOD news, i.e., working "TOGETHER." I am hopeful that it will continue on to other more important issues that may be facing us and needing the Senate's consideration.

Hey, given that we have pretty much say what needed to be said on this conflict issue, let me see if I can help Omdiu with another issue worth discussing, I think. Here is what I read from the OTV:

"Following the withdrawl of OERC National Planner, Youlsau Bells, as a cabinet appointee, the Senate President has authorized Senator Eledui to conduct a full investigation, with the assistance of the Senate Legal Counsel, into the testimony and representations made to the National Congress."

Any thoughts on this, not about Ms. Bells and what she did, but with respect to the Senate President appointing Senator Eledui to continue an "investigation" even after the President had pulled her name out? I was always under the impression that the Legislature passes laws, the Executive executes them to include "investigations" of possible violations.

Sulang,

Brien Sers Nicholas

... chelbuled er kemiu.

How lame on some of the comments,...sooo grade school.. it's like, whatever, like, he's hot, like, me next, Brien, please, talk to me! Like, whatever, just make my day. Popularity contest, and like, I so wanna win.
Funny you kidding about wanting Diaz' baby, BelauANgal, and you got the word dumb right the first time in your post,so we know the dump is a typo. Relax e Lady Lalch. Don't worry about your mental STATE. Adang mekerang e Mosi? hehehe..

Bash idiot Diaz, but you can't help tuning in to his rasio. Puppets! Ok, come on and waste time again.

brien, no idea. hadn't heard that.

Alii Omfree,

Don't you worry about me because I don't break easily. But thank you anyways for your regards.

Alii Brien,

My friend it is good to see you putting sometime away from work and your busy schedule to contribute to the discussion on this blog. You mentioned "Real Talk" which really interests me for many years. I personally believe that though there are lots of talk going around in town to make a deaf man hear Palauans in general do not have the courage to "Talk the Talk."

Two cases in point: Mechesil Belau Conference. After the conference you would hear complaining endlessly. But during the conference they decided to be quiet. And not too distant scenario from the Mechesil Belau is this blog. You are the only one who is willing to take direct shots for coming out with your views in real person so to speak. And that my friend is a pre-requisite to "Real Talk" as you suggest. This blog is a testament that more Palauans are educated but very fearful. Small wonder leaders are doing as they please. Public opinion has not mount up to be an integral ingredient of policy making process and nation building.

Just thoughts that have been burning for the longest time I want to share based on your call for "Real Talk." Sulang for bringing it to discussion.

santy

Santy and Brien,
Is there a difference between "real" and "straight" talks and if any, which is better? Mardingaol to me is a straight talker and by that I mean he is unreluctant to utilize fingerpointing (by names that is) to address his point. Overall however, it's all good so we'll leave it at that. Mesulang


domfree:
Just to be on the safe side, I really do check my facts before I put them out here. I am posting anonymously to protect myself, my family, and my enterprise. It gives me some room to comment be as blunt as possible without going over the line.

That being said, it is always good to make sure that things said here are verified before they are put out. The other party, when I do name them directly, cannot respond to me directly, only defend themselves on this blog.

Thanks to Santy and Brien for posting and giving us their views and opening themselves up to be targets. I'm not ready for that yet.

I think when Omdui came out and said we want clean discussions, it makes more people want to interact and puts more weight on points we talk about in this forum.

Mardi and domfree,


Now that we have some really great bloggers to have clean discussions and debate with....

I am hoping for Omdui to give us more issues to
work with.....


Mesulang for both of you guys imput.


Mosi,
There are many issues out there right now, not making enough headlines or being OPENLY discussed in proper public forums.

We really should be looking at new laws being passed every week. But then again, I may just be paranoid, as some have said.

I don't think you are paranoid as some would think. I doubt they know what the word really means. I happen to deal with paranoid/psychotic people on a daily basis and you are certainly not one of them. You are one of the intelligent person among us in this blog. Let's continue to voice our opinions without being diagnosed by one another!

Wow... some educated people up in here. I'm glad to see Santy talking. I voted for you, but I guess it didn't pan out. Good luck though in the future.

Brien, Mardi, Domfree, Mosi,.. you are some smart peeps. Great to see positive spins in here!

Ma uriul

Yup lets hear it for the edumacated bunch. As for me, I don't see Senator Diaz having a conflict of interest in this bill that he is proposing. Diaz is not a young man and who is to say there will be other palauans who will somehow compete and even take over where MBTV leaves off. I think that is the jist of Diaz attempt to corner communications in Palau. He wants to keep it for Palauans only! for generations to come. More power Senator Diaz. I want to see the playing field level for those up and coming palauans who someday will compete without the distractions and heavy handedness of foreign entities such as OTV. Next on the list is Sam Scott and all those other foreigners in the Dive Industry. Keep Palau in palauan hands always. Also put the SP on notice that he does not and should not represent the interests of American owned companies as he works exclusively for the Palauan Govt. period.

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