When opening the First Ordinary Session of Parliament yesterday, Head of State, Iolu Abbil, firstly reminded members of parliament and the nation about the importance of instilling youth with the value of loyalty and respect.

“Mr Speaker, 2014 marks my final year in office. I wish to reflect on the crucial issues that I have raised in the nation in this honorable house (parliament).

“I had touched before on the importance of teaching the young people of the country the ways of respect and good behavior and the importance of value of respect and loyalty.

“These will ensure there is always peace and unity in the nation,” President Abbil said.

The Head of State said there is a need for the whole country to invest more in the young people.

“Mr Speaker, we have witnessed that during soccer matches in Port Vila town, we hear a lot of swearing.

“This is an indication of the breakdown of respectful attitude and the loss of value of the country.

“The government and all responsible authorities must seriously address this issue,” the Head of State appealed in his address to the parliament yesterday morning.

President Abbil further reminded the Members of Parliament that the priority number one of the nation, and the leaders and her people is for the God’s Kingdom and His Righteousness first.

“This is the roadmap to strengthen the country and uphold her core values, especially in the world today where circular opinion is affecting largely the core values of many nations. Vanuatu must remain strong as a true Christian nation,” President Abbil said before declaring the first Ordinary Session of 2014 officially open yesterday morning.

He also pointed out that instability (political) is also a big financial burden for the country.

“As a mature nation, we want to believe and expect this attitude to change and become less burdensome and the tide is changing a the country become more mature,” said the Head of State.

The President mentioned also time and time management: “Time is a crucial resource which must be properly managed.

“I have also stated before that land is an important resource of the country.

“It must be properly protected for the future generation of this country. I also wish to add that the national labor force is a third pillar resource for the country which we must properly manage,” President Abel pointed out.

“With the current labor export, it is equally important that there must be a balance to ensure we are not short of labor force within our own country,” said the President.

Turning to the stability inside the national parliament, the Head of State said: “With the difficulty with political stability, I did voice my wish and desire to see the National Parliament to adopt a stable platform so as to ensure national development advancement.

“I have also noted the important roles played by the Chiefs and the church leaders as ‘front line leaders’ who are preoccupied everyday with the society, to strenghthen peace, harmony and unity in the nation,” the president appealed to the Chiefs and Church Leaders.

He reminded the leaders in parliament that Vanuatu has been voted as the happiest in the world (twice).

“I have said this before that the true beauty of the country does not appeal to what the physical eye can see, but is embedded in the good heart of the people of this country.”

Touching on the issue of education, the Head of State said that the Church has an important role to play in education which is important, he said.

“This country needs an educated population who fears God in their heart. Therefore, it is important in all our efforts to protect the true treasure which I have already mentioned (putting God’s Kingdom first).

Turning to the issue of corruption, President Abbil, pointed out to the members of parliament that: “This is an enemy that steals the treasure of the country. In one of my speeches during a church conference, I defined corruption as “man or woman turning their back to God”.

“Mr. Speaker, the answer to corruption is for us all to allow for the presence of Jesus into all level of society, beginning with a home up to the national level. Corruption operates in the darkness. The true light of Master, Jesus is real power to drive away the darkness.

“Mr. Speaker, before I end my speech and if there is a final work to say to this parliament, it is centered in this statement:

“The Number one or first priority of this nation, is for the people, the leaders of the nation must first put (seek) God’s Kingdom, and His Righteousness,” President Iolu Abbil firmly emphasized.

The Head of State called for a one-minute silence in honor of the two late MPs, the late MP for Tanna Harry Iauko, and the late MP for Port Vila town the late Patrick Crowby and also for the victims who lost their lives during the recent cyclone Lusi.

The President went on to acknowledge the successful elections of MP Pascal Iauko, in the Tanna constituency and MP Jean Yves Chabod, in the Port Vila constituency by-election.

“I also wish to acknowledge the support of the Government, the Churches and the NGO groups for their support to the victims of cyclone Lusi,” President Abbil said as he read out the list of bills to be debated before declaring the First Ordinary Session for 2014 officially open.

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