“We are very confident in our new High Commissioner (to Australia as) he has a lot of international experiences and we are confident in his ability to represent us in the best possible way with our biggest development partner.
“We back him fully and we know that in his term, he will enhance the relationship that we have with Australia”, said the Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Ralph Regenvanu.
The Minister made the above statement outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs after the signing of the High Commissioner’s contract last Friday.The Minister said his Government has full confidence in the new High Commissioner to Australia, Samson Vilvil Fare, when the 39-year old diplomat who is believed to be the youngest diplomat in the country, finally signed his contract.
Meanwhile as a journalist writing for Daily Post that covered the High Commissioner’s diplomatic requirements since the presentation of his Letter of Credence at the State Office approximately a month ago, I was shocked to be barred and directed down stairs to the entrance to the Ministry by a junior aide, to be advised that the media was not allowed to cover the diplomat’s contract signing. I was not aware of the restriction. I asked why and was advised by the aide that he was instructed by the Director General to give me the message.
This was odd as I had covered similar contract signing ceremonies in the Ministry’s Conference Room before including the current DG’s own contract when he was appointed to the very diplomatic post that the latest successful applicant was about to sign his contract for.
I was advised to wait at the entrance to the Ministry. Then arrived the Minister who was going to his Office. He shook hands and asked with words to the effect if I was present to cover the contract signing. He did not say that the media was not allowed to cover it.
It was then that I told him that I was not allowed to cover the ceremony as I was told by a young man that I was barred by the DG.
I also told the Minister that I needed the picture to complete an exclusive interview that I had done with Mr. Samson Vilvil Fare.
Quickly with a pleasant smile the Minister rescued the day by saying, “Oh alright, just wait here. Once he has signed his contract then I’ll bring him down here and you can take your picture”.
This is why I took his picture with the Minister outside at the entrance to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.