It was a hand written note, believed to be by a man who left it in a Village before moving away to another area, that reads “ Don’t look for me, I am on my Island,”. This is an English translation from the original note written in Bislama language, confirmed by the President of the PENAMA Province, Alban Garae, who spoke to the Daily Post from Santo yesterday morning.
Reliable information received by the Daily Post before going to press states that there are 15 people still on Ambae, 2 in North Ambae and 13 in South Ambae, the source said.
The authorities are requesting their families, relatives and those who may know them to contact them and advise them that this is an emergency order, in case they misunderstood the reasons for the operation to have them evacuated for their safety because of the volcanic activities. But if they continue to refuse and be in hiding, then the Force will have to search them down and bring them out and have them evacuated to one of the evacuation centers, again reiterating that it is for their safety.
“We have given our outmost best.
“The members of the Vanuatu Police and Mobile Force have done their outmost best under such circumstances and situation and everyone from the national government down and donors are pouring in assistance and are continuing to do their best.
“We will continue to do our best with the Force Members on the Island and patrolling by boats with the search for the remaining persons on Ambae,” said Garae.
The President of PENAMA Province left the Provincial headquarter and Longana airport on a flight yesterday at 9am.
The remaining people on Ambae Island are; the Members of the VMF, and few others said to be from South Ambae who refused to be evacuated from the Island for safety reasons and in accordance with government orders following the volcanic alert and declared state of emergency by the national government.