P1 Aet vote leading by 72% The Yes or Aet votes have a comfortable lead by a thousand votes with all the Ratak atoll ballots, including heavily pro-Compact Majuro, counted. With the exception of Wotje, where ehte No votes easily won and a close margin at Maloelap, all the Marshall Islands Atomic Testing Litigation Project (MIATLP) client atolls voted about 64 percent for the Compact of Free Association.
P1 chap. 23 The Gateway Hotel that early morning hour looked like a Life magazine photo on Beirut’s war scars. I left Snobia in he shadow of the domineering breadfruit tree, which sits grandly by the road, ad pushed off on my corn-popping 65cc Honda. Pop-pop-pop-pop down the read. Ah! dear reader, the beauty of that unseen yet so thoroughly caressing breeze that seems gentled and controlled by the moon. Tufts of blue-white cotton clouds streak starchily westward across the dark, blue-tinged sky. Silver glistens off the fronds of swaying royal coconut palms, and shirtless vagabonds prowl the island in search of loose windows, unlatched doors, unattended Budweisers. In so many houses you should not dare to count, half-sleeping long hairs muse warmly on the prospects of an invitation for a midnight jambo, nothing more than a quiet spot on a rubbish-turned-beauty beachscape need be the offer. The level of violence is unregistered. Peace Kingdom. Despite all the complaints, the police station sleeps in a fluorescent glow, Father Tom pauses comfortably over a moral point for next week’s sermon, the Pink Apartments degenerate another half-centimeter toward the ground, and all the world a solemn stillness holds. later…
P3 Majuro public schools feel population pressure Majuro public elementary schools are packed, but local principals say the crowding would be worse if it was not for the fact that many students have transferred to local private schools. “We have 26 teachers, which is not enough for as many students as 800,” said Rita Elementary School Principal Nallo Samson. At Delap Elementary, more than 600 students are enrolled and there are just 19 teachers — not enough to teach split sessions for all the students.
P3 MISSA on brink of cash flow crisis The Marshall Islands Social Security Administration is paying out more than it is collecting, a situation that is putting the agency on “the brink of a cash flow crisis in the very near future,” according to the latest newsletter issued by MISSA. “Current tax collections can no longer sustain current benefits,” the agency said. Responding to what it describes as “rampant under-declaration of gross taxable wages,” MISSA established a tax audit department last year.
P10 News item (Around Town) National police this week arrested five men in connection with a violation of the “Requirement to Spit” law while driving taxis in the capital area. The five were charged with not manifesting their cultural obligation to spit while driving. They were observed driving more than one-half mile without opening their door, leaning, and spitting. The habit of spitting has long been established in Majuro, with the ability to negotiate traffic bumps and pick up passengers while performing “kabilo” having been perfected during the pst several years. Police authorities are cautioning the public, especially taxi drivers, to remember the requirement to spit will leaning out of their commercial vehicles.