By MALUM NALU
Information and communications are high on the agenda of new South Bougainville MP and well-known former radio broadcaster and newspaper journalist Timothy Masiu.
It was ironic that on Monday afternoon when he was declared the winner, all communications to the South Bougainville headquarters in Buin were cut off.
“One of the very tough challenges here in South Bougainville is communications in terms of radio,” Masiu told The National yesterday.
“People are not listening to the news on the radio, they are not engaging in other forms of media and there is also a lack of information and communication services in the region.”
Masiu, 52, from Botulai village in South Bougainville, has had wide experience in radio and newspapers before becoming a political staffer and now a politician.
He is married to an East New Britain woman and has five children.
“I’ve been a media man since I left school,” Masiu said.
“I joined Radio Bougainville in 1981 and worked in Kieta, in Port Moresby, for national radio after completing my two-year cadetship programme with NBC, got transferred to Radio Enga and then spent some years in Radio East New Britain as a broadcaster.
“When the crisis started, I was in Kieta.
“After 13 years in radio, I left NBC and joined the Bougainville restoration team as a government liaison officer.
“For several years, I wrote for the newspapers, firstly as a freelancer for Post-Courier, and when The National was established, I was recruited to cover Bougainville. “
Based in Kokopo, from 1994-1999, Masiu was New Guinea Islands bureau chief for The National.
“I left after that and joined John Momis when he was the governor of Bougainville,” he said.
“In 2000, I joined Leo Dion when he became governor of East New Britain.
“I worked for 12 years for Leo Dion until 2012.
“I ran for the elections in 2012 for South Bougainville when I finished second.
“When Leo Dion became deputy prime minister, I worked for his office as first secretary and then joined the New Britain Palm Oil Ltd as government liaison officer until December 2014, when I teamed up with the deputy prime minister’s Kokopo office.
“I headed the office until the death of the late member when I resigned to contest this by-election.”
Masiu has been an NBC board member and chairman of Vunamami Farmers’ Training Centre.
By MALUM NALU