Tatooine is far enough from Naboo be out of the grasp of the Trade Federation - a shipping giant if ever there was one - but yet close enough to Naboo to reach with a leaky hyperdrive.
Influence on the ground appears a spotty thing for the Republic and the Trade Federation. The Republic's sole method of patching things up seems to be the Jedi Council.
According to a scene cut from the cinematic edition of the movie, Obi-Wan's lightsaber is not waterproof. Immersion drained it of power, and it will take some time to recharge. He seems to have subsequently decided to waterproof his lightsaber.