Unbudgeted allowances cost Govt Vt 64 millionPosted: September 2, 2016
Acting allowances to civil servants have cost Government over Vt 64 million in the past six months – expenses Government had not budgeted for. The Finance Department advised this could mean the sudden reduction of other planned expenditures. The projected budgets for these allowances were zero, says Radio Vanuatu. It is to be hoped lessons will hereby be learned.
Lessons should also be learned from a declaration of kastom land ownership by a council of chiefs which met as a land tribunal but whose decision has been ruled unlawful and quashed
by Justice Aru of the Supreme Court. Various provisions of the Custom Land Management Act were complied with. Others were not. The decision concerns the land on which the Ulei airstrip in Ambrym is located. The kastom council of chiefs, the Malmeli Council of Chiefs (MCC) had decided the ownership of the land with only their Chairman present and constituting the land tribunal. The Customary Lands Unit (CLU) of the Department of Lands should then not have accepted the MCC’s decision. (Daily Post)
The second national Congress of the Reunification of Movements for Change (RMC) will be held in Santo in 2018. As mentioned earlier, PM Charlot Salwai has been re-elected President. Caroline Kalangis of Efate was named national vice president of the party last week. Over 30 women were present at the Congress at Melsisi last week. Vanuatu Indigenous Watch has carried considerable news of the RMC Congress and details a little of the history of the party, too. RMC was born in 2012 out of the Union of Moderate Parties for Change, and following court action by Serge Vohor to prevent use of the name UMPC just before the 2012 election.
PM Charlot Salwai, on his trip north for the RMC Congress, stopped off at Matevulu College, Santo, and spoke to students, together with Education Minister Jean-Pierre Nirua. The PM was pleased to point out that two current ministers were students of Matevulu, Agriculture Minister Matai Seremaia and Justice Minister Ronald Warsal. Other ministers joined in a welcome ceremony for the visitors and opened the school’s new internet facilities. Feasting took place. (VIW)
Vanuatu’s trade commissioner in Australia, Donald Pelam, is in Vanuatu to discuss with manufacturers the possibility of having their products sold in Australia. Asian products similar to our own, like virgin coconut oil, are widely sold in Australia, but Pelam is here to suggest Australian market entry possibilities. (Radio Vanuatu)