P1 Compact signed President Amata Kabua and US Ambassador Fred Zeder on June 25 signed the Compact of Free Association and all the remaining subsidiary agreements including the nuclear claims 177 agreement in a ceremony at the Nitijela chamber. Kabua, as he did for the first time last week, asked for the support of the people in the September 7 plebiscite. Zeder call it “the bridge over troubled waters to a better tomorrow.”
P1 FSM passes Compact by landslide despite Ponape vote against The Federated States of Micronesia voted overwhelmingly for the Compact of Free Association but voters in Ponape rejected the pact 4,264 use to 4,453 no, according to the FSM information office. FSM-wide, the vote tally is 18,332 yes and 5,264 no.
P4 AMI’s new aircraft arrives The long-awaited arrival of Air Marshall Islands new aircraft, the Saab 2000, was met with much fanfare at the airport last Wednesday. Speeches by Johan Oster, vice president of operations at Saab, and President Amata Kabua gave high praise for the new plane’s speed and efficiency. The Uliga Youth Choir sang at the ceremony before Fr. Rich McAuliff and President Kabua blessed the plane.
P6 Local style A Marshallese manual on dog protection might read something like this: If threatened by a dog, at first reach for the ground as if you are going to grab a rock. If this action doesn’t send the dog howling away with its tail between its legs, then get serious. Take rock in hand, plant both legs firmly, bend slightly backwards with your weight on your right foot, and start your throwing motion from behind your right ear (for right-handers) with a downward, sidearm motion, releasing the rock and following through. If rock contact is not made with the offending canine, repeated. It is highly recommended that the individual practice speed of rock acquisition, target trajectory, and impact performance percentage. Routine utilization for practice on live moving targets, i.e., dogs, can optimize anti-bite defense. Be prepared (but have a rock ready just in case).
P18 Ujae canoe’s epic voyage The first voyaging canoe of its kind to be built in 40 years set sail from Ujae this week on an epic voyage to Majuro. The canoe was completed earlier this month by boat builders on Ujae as part of Alele Museum’s Waan Aelon Kein (canoes of these islands) project. Thomas Bokin, one of the master builders who supervised the construction of the 50-foot canoe, is navigating the canoe by the stars and waves in the old style.
P18 AMI adds third flight Air Marshall Islands increased its air service to Fiji this week with the addition of a third flight on the route using the new Saab 2000. The service linking Kiribati and Tuvalu with Majuro and Nadi is now Tuesday, Friday and Sunday.
P1 Rien: ‘Where’s the $4 million?’ The Public Accounts Committee’s first meeting in memory this week Wednesday was dominated by Internal Affairs Minister Rien Morris who is angry about what he says is at least $4 million going to the outer islands local government that is unaccountable and unauditable.” Morris, who arrived late for the hearing, quickly took over the microphone.
P3 Bobby calls for urgent reforms Chief Secretary Bobby Muller says the RMI government must deal with the problems of spending too much money, increasing the government workforce, and financial losses by government-owned agencies. In a policy memo to Cabinet earlier this month, Muller said the problems facing the RMI call for a basic change in the government’s economic policy.
P21 Mr. Weaver, Ms. Canoe Builder Boys learning to weave and girls working on canoes? That role reversal is stretching the horizons of 20 Upward Bound students who are spending afternoons at the Waan Aelon in Majel program this summer. Still, it’s not only carpentry and traditional skills that the Upward Bound students are picking up. “We treat them like employees,” said WAM Director Alson Kelen. “Each student has a contract, with what they are required to do. They punch in and punch out each day, and they are required to phone in if they can’t come to work.” This is one way the program can pass on “life skills” to the students that will help better prepare them for getting a job.