Head of State, President Obed Moses Tallis, has reminded the Members of Parliament that they are servants — elected to serve the people.
In his keynote address at the start of the First Ordinary Session of parliament on Tuesday morning, president Tallis, reminded the MPs of his speech during the 2017 First Ordinary Session.
“The country has come a long way, experienced many developments and at the time faced up with many challenges along the way. With all the progress, the developments and challenges, we have to thank God for His faithfulness that has led us through to this year 2018.
“I have an obligation to remind us all that we must always put God first in all things, so as to fulfill the preamble of the Constitution of the Republic of Vanuatu- in traditional values, Faith in God and Christian Principles.”
President Tallis then offered a prayer.
Part of the president’s prayer was a call to God to make His dwelling place in the national parliament of the Republic of Vanuatu. He called on God for the forgiveness of the sins of this nation.
He prayed for peace and comfort in many places around the world where there’s much sufferings going on and in Vanuatu he Prayed for the people of Ambae and commit the country and her people in God’s Hands.
Touching on leadership, President Tallis reminded the members of the 11th Legislature that leaders are the servants of the people.
“We are elected to serve the people, not to work for self-interest for individual MPs,” he said.
“At the same time, i take this opportunity to congratulate the Speaker of Parliament, the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition for keeping the principles of democracy going, and respecting the rule of law that ensures we maintain dignity and credibility of this Honorable House.
“Furthermore, my address is a challenge to you all as leaders of this nation and encourage all MPs that you are the national leaders and you must live by example.
“You have an obligation to serve our people. We must perform and live up to standard of expectation, despite sometimes, negative views towards your responsibilities. Dignity is all about humbleness, truthful, self-respect in every day role as a MP.”
On political stability, the president said: “As president of the Republic of Vanuatu, i must commend all of you leaders here of your steadfast leadership role that ensure political stability which drive the country to an average economic growth rate of 2-3 % growth over the last years and looking ahead into the future.”
He went on to emphasize the importance of political stability as necessary to advancing development in all sectors of the country.
President Tallis recalled that during the previous Ordinary Session opening, he congratulated the Government on the infrastructure and economic development including, airports, wharves, sporting complexes, schools, health, beautification projects in urban sectors and elsewhere.
The President also touched on other important national issues. These will be covered separately.