Go Pinis

Go Pinis

Saturday, November 13, 2010

BBQ with a Bougainvillean

So I was travelling to work the other day and happened to glance out of the bus window…and much to my surprise I saw the former President of Bougainville, James Tanis, standing on the side of the road.

As soon as the bus stopped I bolted out the door and caught up with him. Turns out James has been in Canberra for the past six weeks, working on his memoirs and consulting on some papers in cooperation with the Australian National University.

From left: Me, James, Saskia

We’ve since had James over for a couple of barbeques at our apartment. It has been great catching up on events but more importantly we have both enjoyed just having a beer together. Saskia also set up a talk for James and ANU academic Anthony Reagan at the Attorney-General’s Department which apparently went very well.

James heads off next week and may return next year to study a Masters in International Relations. He’s got some ideas on how to continue to help Bougainville while he is abroad, and with all of his connections I’m sure he will be able to get something going. If he does I will be sure to write a post about it.