Iroojlaplap Mike’s big day

Iroojlaplap and Nitijela Member Mike Kabua, right, is pictured at the January 3, 2022 opening session of Nitijela with now-Finance Minister Brenson Wase, left, and Nitijela Member Tony Aiseia. Photo: Wilmer Joel.

Numerous Air Marshall Islands flights, ships and boats all have one trajectory this week: Kwajalein Atoll.

From top government leadership to residents of remote outer islands in the Ralik Chain, all are aiming to be on Kwajalein Atoll this week — and those that cannot be there in person are sending contributions of many kinds: food, jaki (woven mats), and many types of other handicrafts.

The event of the year that takes place on Ebeye Island this week Thursday is the “Kailoojoj” — or coronation — of Iroojlaplap Mike Kabua. The Kailoojoj is a ceremony in Marshallese customary practice that is reserved for the coronation of paramount chiefs.

Iroojlaplap Mike assumed the chair of paramount chief for Kwajalein and other islands in Ralik following the passing of his older brother, the late Iroojlaplap (and former President) Imata Kabua, in 2019.

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