Ebeye celebrates Ribuuk Meto

The Ribuuk Meto made its first voyage to Ebeye earlier this month and was decked out with materials and t-shirts, as dancing ladies show the island welcome spirit. Photo: Eve Burns.

Ribuuk Meto received a wild welcome party at Ebeye dock. The first event of Kwajalein Day was the christening of Ribuuk Meto, making its maiden voyage from Majuro to Kwajalein. This christening was unlike Majuro’s, which was, for lack of a better word, dull.

Kwajalein folk really topped the bar on celebrating. Women were all dancing and jumping up and down at the dock. Throwing money into the water having kids jump in the water to get, they really made it rain here at Ebeye.

As the ship docked, ladies couldn’t wait to get a hold of the captain and sailors to kiss and hug as a way of showing appreciation for safely bringing Ribuuk Meto to Ebeye. Captain and sailors were forcefully taken to dance as the ladies circled them so they couldn’t run away. They were spoiled with chocolates.

Present at the event were President David Kabua, Ministers Kitlang Kabua, Bruce Bilimon, Alfred Alfred, Jr, and Sandy Alfred, Nitijela Members Stephen Phillip and David Paul, Mayors Hirata Kabua and Marie Milne, and Lerooj Anta James. The opening prayer came from Reverend Lawson Matauto. Mayor Hirata welcomed all the guests and those that will be competing in the events.

Minister Jr. Alfred said in his remarks that he has always heard that Ebeye ladies were very outgoing and daring but now has witnessed it for the first time seeing them dancing up and down the pier, he said he was concerned they might have fallen into the water. He talked about the ship, how much it cost, length and height.

A jepta from Mon Kubok weto prepared a dance for the christening that got a lot of people dancing. Lerooj Anta did the christening by cracking a coconut onto the dock which led to another dance and making it rain with dollar bills. The event ended with prayer, sandwiches and soft drinks to take home.


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