All 52 members of the Parliament of the Republic of Vanuatu have each received a laptop from a Vanuatu-registered Chinese company, Vanuatu National Digital Stock Exchange, which is soon to begin operation in the country.
The owner of the company, Ms. Ruimin Cheng and her delegation, visited Parliament House Thursday evening and donated the Apple laptops to the members of Parliament. Those on hand to receive their laptops included the Speaker, Esmon Saemon, the Deputy Prime Minister, Joe Natuman, several government ministers and some members of Parliament.
About 20 others including the Prime Minister, Charlot Salwai, and the Leader of the Opposition, Ishmael Kalsakau, who were not present at that time will get theirs from the Office of the Speaker.
Before handing over the laptops, the business owner of Vanuatu National Digital Stock Exchange, Ms. Ruimin, handed over a cheque for Vt8.5 million to the Minister of Finance, Gaetan Pikioune, which government will use to pay for the laptops. One laptop costs Vt164,300.
Speaking on behalf of Ms. Ruimin before handing over the laptops, Mr. Karim said: “We are now in the digital age and it is important that Members of Parliament are kept up to date with events happening around them.”
The Speaker of Parliament thanked Ms. Ruimin Cheng and her delegation and the company for the laptops.
He clarified to the MPs that the 52 laptops are the properties of Parliament to be returned to the Parliament Secretariat or the Office of the Speaker of Parliament at the end of their term in Parliament.
A dinner was hosted for all the MPs by the company at 6pm at the Convention Centre following the handing over ceremony at the Pig’s Tusk area of Parliament House.