P1 RepMar moves to protect offshore banking status The Republic of the Marshall Islands is moving toward early enactment of new regulations for its burgeoning offshore banking business. The Marshall Islands government began licensing offshore banks in March 1983. Since then, it has licensed 102 such banks. Because the business of offshore banking in the Marshall Islands is still in its infancy, some irregularities have recently come to light in the form of questionable practices by a few of the newly-licensed offshore banks, said RepMar in a release. The Cabinet is taking immediate steps to draft legislation and regulations to provide tighter control of offshore banking activities and to provide for revocation of licenses of banks engaged in improper activities.
P3 5 adrift for 30 days wind up on Jaluit Five people from Kiribati were found near Mejrirok Island, Jaluit Atoll after drifting for almost 30 days in a 12-foot outboard boat. A woman, child and three men were on the boat that developed engine trouble. They were returned to Kiribati via AMI’s 748 flight to Tarawa and Fiji.
P9 Ebeye road being paved A very definite hustle is apparent in this island community, and not only the feet-shuffling kind of activity one might find at one of the local discos but also the community-oriented activity such as tree planting, road paving, and even window washing. The paving for the time being is a base coat, designed to keep the dust down and serve as a temporary improvement because there is much work anticipated that will require excavation: salt water lines, sewage lines and the like. “We are considering making the road one way (for safety),” said Mayor Alvin Jacklick.
P1 President medevaced President Amata Kabua was in the process Wednesday of an RMI-requested medical evacuation on a special Coast Guard flight to Honolulu to undergo recommended additional testing related to medical problems which developed Tuesday this week. Medical authorities said the President was stable Wednesday, following some mild chest pain Tuesday.
P3 Jiba: From secretary to senator The unofficial vote count for the Namdrik Nitijela election last Friday was released by the Electoral Administration this week. Jiba Kabua is the runaway winner, with 332 votes. The closest challenger is Amos MacQuinn, the former mayor of Namdrik, with 155 votes.
P5 Why did Peace Corps go? There has been quite a bit of speculation as to why Peace Corps finally pulled out of the RMI. But one reason that is probably closer to the truth than anything else is that the Peace Corps was no longer needed here. In 1966, few Marshallese could speak or write English, and schools generally were very basic. During the past three decades, a tremendous amount of exposure to other parts of the world and shifts in the population has resulted in a great awakening among the rank and file Marshallese — so much so that the typical “basic” service provided by your regular Peace Corps Volunteer can be and is adequately provided by Marshallese themselves. So why have PCVs doing what Marshallese can do for themselves? In this light, it makes sense that Peace Corps is no longer in RMI. They worked themselves out of a job.
P10 New power plant critically needed Construction of a new power plant for Majuro is expected to get underway in the early part of next year, once loan guarantees are in place to secure financing required to build the $10 million facility. The need for a new power plant has taken on urgency since the current plant hit an all-time high of 10 megawatts of demand recently. With actual power capacity of the five engines at 12.2 megawatts, MEC is now forced to run four engines most of the time to deliver power.
P38 US Senate sweetens plan The US Senate is proposing to sweeten the pot for health care funding for Marshallese from nuclear test-affected islands, according to a statement from the RMI Embassy in Washington. A new version of Senate Bill 1756 “makes several important and substantive changes to the original legislation introduced last summer,” the Embassy said. Bill 1756 would now provide a permanent annual appropriation of $4.5 million for a “supplemental healthcare grant” that would expand medical services to 10 atolls: In addition to Bikini, Enewetak, Rongelap and Utrok, Ailuk, Likiep, Mejit, Wotho, Wotje and Ujelang would be included.