Supreme Court’s Constitutional case judgement due next Wednesday

File picture of the Vanuatu Supreme Court. Photo: TIV

The Supreme Court will sit next Wednesday to complete the constitutional claims of the 14 ex-MPs in prison for bribery. Former MPs are also giving evidence in the case and Tuesday next week the State Law Office will file its submission in the matter. Judge David Chetwynd will sit at 9am on Wednesday before giving his decision in the constitutional case. Former Public Prosecutor John William Timakata is one appearing on behalf of the SLO. (Radio Vanuatu and Daily Post)

Following an announcement in Daily Post earlier this month pointing out that the kastom owners of Bouffa/Bellevue have had only three premiums paid on the 1,200 leases of their 6,020ha of land from the USP Emalus area to the Teouma River, the kastom owning families are beginning planning with Government a town which will rival Port Vila in size. Professional planning which Port Vila lacks will be a necessity and is also under discussion with Government. The area is considered much less vulnerable to natural environmental hazards. (Daily Post)

There are over a thousand Muslims in Vanuatu from Santo, Ambae, Ambrym, Malekula, Epi, Paama, Efate, Tanna and Erromango. This is according to the man who introduced the faith to this country in the 1970s, Mohammed Siddiq Sambo of Mele. “Bad things are happening in Vanuatu like killings and rape”, he says. But the “different faiths must work together for a common goal of promoting peace and harmony.” (Daily Post). For more background on Islam in Oceania, have a look at this photo essay by Vlad Sohkin featuring images taken in West Papua, PNG, CNMI, Tanna and Mele.

India has given Vt 20 million to assist with further education through ICT centres and Vt 21 million for renewable energy assistance “to help cut lighting cost and electricity use.” Vanuatu will also send students to India on scholarships provided by India. The gift cheque was handed over to Foreign Minister Leingkone by India’s Mines and Energy Minister Piyush Goyal this week. Vanuatu supports India’s bid to become a permanent member of the Security Council. (Radio Vanuatu and Daily Post)

File picture of the type of container stackers that Japan has given Vanuatu for the Lapetasi wharf

File picture of the type of container stackers that Japan has given Vanuatu for the Lapetasi wharf

All media have referred to approximately Vt 180 million worth of container handling equipment from the Japanese aid agency JICA. The equipment will be immensely useful in stacking containers at the Lapetasi Wharf. There are two 45-ton full reach stackers, two 10-ton empty reach stackers as well as spare parts and other equipment. Many attended an unveiling on Tuesday.

Tomorrow there is to be a Slow Food show at Saralana Park from 10am. Local food will be on sale. The intention of the Lands Desk at the Vanuatu Cultural Centre (VKS) is to “keep the fire burning” after Tanna’s Slow Food Festival. And we all do well to support it and possibly help to advance acceptance of the indigenous menu delicacies. (Daily Post)