Falklands : LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT SPEECH BY ROGER EDWARDS (20/12/2012)
Submitted by Falkland Islands News Network (Juanita Brock) 06.01.2013 (Article Archived on 20.01.2013)
Thank you Mr Speaker. In rising to support the Motion for Adjournment I would like to start by saying why I asked those particular questions today.
LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT SPEECH BY ROGER EDWARDS (20/12/2012)
Thank you Mr Speaker. In rising to support the Motion for Adjournment I would like to start by saying why I asked those particular questions today. And I would like to thank the Complaints Commissioner for her very full and detailed report on the equipment that was seized. It is in the public domain and I hope people take the opportunity of reading it.
It came back because recently when I was in the United Kingdom I attended in a very small market town in Wiltshire an exhibition of equipment that is available today. I have no knowledge of downloading stuff from satellites and so on but what did impress me was the sheer range and scale of equipment. With more computerisation miniaturisation, bigger and wider bandwidths available to satellites and so on, footprints are becoming bigger and more accessible to more and more people. And my colleague the Hon Gavin Short raised one of the difficulties that we have in that although the footprint may be encrypted, many of the side-loads from those satellites do actually push out unencrypted signals. So if you buy this kit you can go on, look in the sky and download unencrypted signals for free. And at the moment of course it makes that unauthorised decoders or free to air equipment. And I think it is important that we in the Falkland Islands do get this broadcasting ordinance sorted out sooner rather than later so that we donít dip out on what is available. What cost many thousands of pounds years ago now only costs a few tens of pounds and I think that we should have access to everything that is available to us.
I would like to very briefly like to mention the cruise ships and thank them for continuing to visit the Falkland Islands. I donít think we should be too critical of some of the companies that have put up with all sorts of hassle from that erratic, populist and protectionist Argentine government. I do think itís backfired on the Argentine government in many ways and I would like to thank those cruise ship companies that continue to visit and support our tourism here in the Falkland Islands.
Recently I have been aware of mutterings about MLAs being away overseas. I would here like to say I believe our visits overseas are absolutely essential. Dick Sawle in his mention in the Motion for Adjournment mentioned about the briefings that he and others gave on a recent visit in London about oil. We must get our message out and about. We are continually suffering across the world the rampages and nasty mutterings from Argentina. We must get out there and counter that. We must rebuff their ridiculous claims about the Falkland Islands and we must continue to put our case for our right to self-determination.
It has already been mentioned but I will mention it again here that we have a visit of the CPA in February which will bring a lot of people to our shores, many of whom have not been here before and they can go away and see what the Falklands is really about. Thatís followed shortly afterwards by the Referendum in March and we will be having many official and probably unofficial observers coming down to see how we run with that referendum. We will start campaigning and I am sure, soon after the Christmas and New Year break. And then we will have to do even more overseas visits to spread the word about that Referendum and how it is our right to determine our own future.
And finally, Mr Speaker, I would like through the good offices of the Commander British Forces in the South Atlantic Islands to thank all the personnel at MPA who are away from their family and friends at this time of year both Military and Civil and to also thank him for his continued support to our commemorations that we hold dear here in the Falkland Islands; and in particular in bringing down bands such as the Royal Marine Band that has been here recently.
Sir I wish them well and thank you for keeping us safe and giving us our freedom.
Mr Speaker, I support the Motion.