LOCAL journalist Alfred Sasako has denied any involvement with Chinese firms in the country.
Rather, he said he was simply doing his work as a journalist to report on issues affecting the country.
Sasako was responding to accusations levelled against him by local activist Lawrence Makili.
Makili earlier accused Sasako of misleading the nation with his articles on China, claiming Sasako was also working for Chinese interest.
“I must make it clear that I was not advocate for China or even employed by any Chinese firm as claimed by Makili,” Sasako said.
“What Makili should understand is the media is playing a vital role here to make sure our people are well informed about the real issues affecting their lives,” Sasako said.
He added foreign companies such as Bintan Mining or others should be appreciated because they at least provide our people with long term employments.
“Unlike Makili himself what does he provide for our increasing unemployment rate?” Sasako said.
He further added that the country’s population is growing by 3.2% according to the latest official report.
“Therefore we will need new schools, new clinics and social infrastructures to cater for our growing population and also our young people need employments,” he said.
Sasako said these foreign companies must be commended for their contributions rather than criticising them.
He also explained that he always mentioned China because it is time “we stop fooling ourselves” around with Taiwan.
“For 36 years our leaders have played around with the funds that were meant to develop our constituencies.
“Now that we switched to China this a good opportunity for us to explore new ways to help alleviate our social infrastructure with what China can offer.
“We need good roads, we need good bridges, we need good medical facilities these are the kinds of things we need to improve the lives of our citizens,” he added.
Sasako said Makili should stop living in the imaginary world but come out and see the reality that our country is facing.
By ANDREW FANASIA