Vanuatu Daily News Digest | 16 May 2015

With the greater immediacy of radio news, VBTC had the biggest story at noon today … The government’s post-cyclone Pam Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Plan was outlined late Friday to the development donor partners and media. This was to highlight what government wants to be noted as priorities. United Nations agencies, and other international funding bodies like the Asian Development Bank, were present. Prime Minister Natuman observed that the people of Vanuatu trust the government to work with all such agencies for reconstruction. Donor partners were also told that the country still very much relies on their assistance. "Essential is a common understanding and commitment to prioritize the activities," PM Natuman said. He emphasized that the government must make use of its systems in place for the management of recovery funds. Responsibility for recovery management will be with the ministries of government and donor assistance will need to support this objective.

Donor partners gave their responses to the government plan. The Australian Government is contributing 184 million vatu for renovation of schools, to top up maintenance money for Shefa and Tafea schools following damage reports.

Daily Post has announced the gazetting of the honorary citizenship plan. People granted this as part of the economic rehabilitation plan will be entitled to hold a Vanuatu passport but there are strict limitations on the privileges this will provide for a payment of around VT 13 million. Political involvement is prohibited.

Daily Post also carries a photo of government leaders celebrating a year in office and a long unattributed (other than by "staff reporter") article on recruitment irregularities at the VNPF. In addition the Marobe urban land claim dismissal by the Appeal Court is detailed.