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"Several prominent political leaders have been named as possible candidates for the National Council presidency ­ in the interim period leading up to the elections. ... The National Council members who have been named are Aniceto Guterres (director of Yayasan Hak), Manuel Viegas Carrascalao (a businessman), Clementino dos Reis Amaral (from KOTA Party) and Avelino Coelho (from the Socialist Party)." Timor Post

Background below:

Also below: Apr 3 TP: “The Replacement Of The President Is A Political Process”  News from ETimor added Apr 5

Bahasa Indonesia Headlines—Tuesday 3 April 2001

Horta, Aniceto, Manuel, Amaral and Avelino named as NC Presidential candidates

Timor Post

Front Page headline

Several prominent political leaders have been named as possible candidates for the National Council presidency ­ in the interim period leading up to the elections.

The names have originated from the National Council itself.

In the meantime Dr Jose Ramos Horta who was nominated by UN Transitional Administrator Sergio Vieira de Mello to replace Xanana, will also be given an opportunity for the presidency.

The National Council members who have been named are Aniceto Guterres (director of Yayasan Hak), Manuel Viegas Carrascalao (a businessman), Clementino dos Reis Amaral (from KOTA Party) and Avelino Coelho (from the Socialist Party).

The NC debate yesterday was heated. Some NC members wanted Xanana to give an explanation to the chamber on his resignation.
“I don’t accept his [Xanana’s] resignation. This is serious and it has occurred at a crucial moment when we are in difficulty,” said Angela Freitas from the Travalhista Party.

But other NC members stressed that the NC should not reject Xanana’s resignation.

“That is his right [to resign] and we have to respect that right. If we reject Xanana’s resignation, he will be a bad president for us and the international community,” said Aniceto Guterres.

Sergio de Mello’s nomination of Ramos Horta was also questioned.

“It’s not enough that it was done [on Saturday] through a press conference.

It has to be clarified officially at the National Council,” said an NC member.


"“But it is not a problem of who becomes the NC President, it is a matter, however, of whether that person has the vision and commitment to take this country forward,” Tolentino de Araujo, Dean of the Sociopolitical Faculty

“The Replacement Of The President Is A Political Process”

Timor Post

Page 2 headline

The resignation of Xanana Gusmao and the National Council President must be treated as a normal process in a democratic society, though it might have positive or negative implications for the country.

This was stated yesterday by the dean of the Sociopolitical Faculty Tolentino de Araujo.

The university dean said he agreed that Jose Ramos Horta was the best choice to replace Xanana Gusmao at the National Council and stressed that Horta was the preferred candidate by the international community.

He said this was inevitable because Timor Lorosae was still tied with in with foreign countries.

“But it is not a problem of who becomes the NC President, it is a matter, however, of whether that person has the vision and commitment to take this country forward,” said Tolentino.


Background:

Apr 2 LUSA: Gusmao Explains Resignation from National Council  News
“I believe that priority work, with debate and explanations beyond the urban center of Dili, should be carried out among the population. This requires attention and availability that my overlapping positions did not allow me to fulfill” Xanana Gusmao

Apr 2 AP: East Timor Council Blocks Ramos Horta's Bid For Top Post  News
"Political squabbling in East Timor intensified Monday when its transitional assembly blocked, at least temporarily, a bid by Nobel Peace laureate Jose Ramos Horta to become its new chief following the surprise resignation of popular independence leader Xanana Gusmao." Associated Press

Apr 1 RDP: Horta on national council  Interview
"I think it was my duty, my moral duty, to accept this challenge [presidency of ETimor’s National Council interim parliament]. There has been a lot of disorientation, sadness, consternation and general concern among the population, the youth and the members of the National Council. I have spoken with Sergio Vieira de Mello head of UNTAET, with Xanana Gusmao and with practically every political party, and also with Mari Alkatiri Economic Affairs Minister and Ana Pessoa Internal Administration Minister, and they all thought that it would be important for the National Council to continue its work, and to, how should I put it, to avoid a breaking point, and that it would be important to send a message of continuity, seriousness and tranquility to the whole of the population, and naturally to the international community as well." Jose Ramos Horta, vice-president, National Council of the Timorese Resistance

Mar 31 Reut: Ramos-Horta replaces Gusmao as Timor leader  News
"Nobel peace laureate Jose Ramos-Horta, foreign minister of U.N.-run East Timor, will take over as head of the territory’s de facto parliament, the United Nations said on Saturday. He replaces independence leader Xanana Gusmao, who quit last week over internal squabbling which he said was hampering the tiny territory’s push for independence." Reuters

Mar 29 RA: Allies back Gusmao's decision to quit East Timor assembly  News
"The civil society needs more his time and work rather than the national council. So he wants to continue to bring the people together to really reflect on the constitution so that it can be a legitimate one, reflects the peoples’ wishes, spirit and soul as he puts it, so his time is better used elsewhere rather than in the national council." Agio Pereira

Mar 28 BBC: Gusmao resigns as East Timor leader  News
"I feel, as president of the National Council, that any attempt to overcome the deadlock is in vain due to the lack of willingness [of Council] members, ... As I refuse to be part of a politically irresponsible process, I hereby tender my resignation,” East Timor independence leader Jose “Xanana” Gusmao


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