During the celebrations of National Veterans Day, Timor-Leste’s President Francisco Guterres ‘Lu Olo’ asked the Council of Combatants of National Liberation to record as soon as possible the stories of combatants.
He recalled the many combatants who died during the struggle for national liberation and stressed that every time a combatant dies, a portion of Timor-Leste’s collective history dies with him or her.
It is a laudable suggestion that warrants the design of an oral history project by archival institutions and researchers who share an interest in Timor-Leste’s contemporary history.
Meanwhile, there is an extensive repository of audio recordings yet to be explored. It a set of 154 programmes and interviews that were broadcast by radio programme Tuba Rai Metin, a Tetum phrase that means ‘stand your ground’.
It was the name chosen for a radio programme broadcast by Radio UNTAET in 2002 that collected stories from East Timorese people between 1975 and 1999. Matthew Abud, one of its producers, wrote about the programme here.
Copies of the recordings were donated by USAid to AMRT and other institutions and area available Casa Comum, a platform developed by Fundação Mário Soares.
Summaries in Portuguese and Tetum were produced for most of the 154 files, based on notes taken by the authors of the programme. Casa dos Timores has added English versions of those summaries. (here)
(Image: USAID Timor-Leste Country Development Cooperation Strategy (CDCS) 2013-2018)