Port Vila’s sanitation gets big upgrade courtesy of Vanuatu and Australian Governments and ADB

The launch of the new sewage processing facility at Bouffa, Efate, yesterday. Photo: AHC

The new sewage treatment facility, part of the Port Vila Urban Development Project (PVUDP) was officially opened at Bouffa, Efate, yesterday. Photo: Australian High Commission

A pioneering sewage treatment facility was officially opened yesterday by the Minister of Infrastructure Jotham Napat and Australian High Commissioner Jenny Da Rin, together with the acting Port Vila Mayor and Director of the Asian Development Bank Emma Veve. Funded by the governments of Vanuatu and Australia along with a Vt 516 million Read the rest of this entry »


Due diligence reason for delay in awarding tender for Bauerfield runway improvements

Port Vila's Bauerfield international airport

It would seem the World Bank feels insufficient due diligence has been activated for this very expensive project. And look where airfield improvements got the previous government (former ministers in prison) because of lack of due diligence over Rentabau. Tenderers for the Bauerfield airport works are being told there is a delay Read the rest of this entry »

Air Vanuatu Twin Otter cable snap incident under investigation

File photo of an Air Vanuatu Twin Otter at Gaua Airport. Photo: Olivier Morice/Wikimedia Commons

File photo of an Air Vanuatu Twin Otter at Gaua Airport. Photo: Olivier Morice/Wikimedia Commons

The broken cable which caused “technical difficulties” with the Twin Otter plane at Walaha just over a week ago is being investigated. Air Vanuatu, Vanuatu Civil Aviation and Civil Aviation NZ are conducting the inquiry. The cable was manufactured in New Zealand. The break was potentially very serious, but occurred just as the plane was landing and the pilot handled the matter majestically, Air Vanuatu advises. Good news for Air Vanuatu safety at the same time is the airline’s passing of its IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA). CEO Joseph Laloyer said the results of the 2016 audit were the best ever achieved by the company. (Daily Post)

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Election results out on Monday; Chief Justice says 2015 a pivotal year for Vanuatu legal system

President Lonsdale inspects guard of honour yesterday

President Lonsdale inspects guard of honour yesterday. Photo: Bob Makin

The Chief Justice, Vincent Lunabek, in the presence of the Head of State, President Baldwin Lonsdale, caretaker PM Kilman and members of the judicial and legal professions, yesterday saw 2015 as an important historical year. The Chief Justice saw 2015 as “important for the law and the Courts in this Republic.” He invited his hearers to reflect on the impact of the law on the community, and on the roles of the Judiciary and the legal profession within it. He said “Vanuatu society puts important value on the concept of the rule of law as a cornerstone or pillar in our community. It is important to understand Vanuatu’s legal system and how justice is administered. I say that because, conceptually, this is after all the purpose of the law. Vanuatu’s legal system is mainly based on the common law, some aspects of French law and judicially-declared custom law. Fairness, transparency and access to justice are also fundamental characteristics of Vanuatu’s legal system. The law is there to facilitate the well-being of the people of Vanuatu and society. It is not to be seen as somehow obstructing them.”

A lengthy and important policy statement Read the rest of this entry »

Vanuatu — haven for war criminals

Vanuatu: end impunity through universal jurisdiction (Amnesty International report)

Vanuatu is a potential haven for war criminals fleeing justice for their crimes, because the Vanuatu Parliament has not enacted national legislation that provides universal jurisdiction over genocide and other crimes against humanity, according to a new Amnesty International report (PDF, 1.1Mb):

Although Vanuatu’s ratification of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (the Rome Statute) on 2 December 2011 was a positive step, it is concerning that the country has not yet given the Rome Statute full effect in national law, including by providing universal jurisdiction over genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Vanuatu’s national legislation currently provides for universal jurisdiction over war crimes in limited circumstances and an arguably restricted form of crime against humanity. The definitions of these crimes fall far short of the standard set by international law.  Vanuatu’s national legislation does not provide for universal jurisdiction over other crimes under international law, including genocide.

Vanuatu legislators, do we really want war criminals arriving on our shores so they can have impunity for their crimes?