President Surangel Whipps Jr. said elections taking place in different Pacific Island countries had delayed the full implementation of the SUVA Agreement.

The SUVA Agreement contained certain concessions agreed to by the members of the Pacific Island Forum to demonstrate equitable representation among members within the PIF membership, including Micronesia.

Some of those concessions included having the Micronesian candidate to be appointed as the next SG. There will be two SG deputies, one from each of the two subregions not represented by the Secretary-General. The Office of the Pacific Ocean Commission (OPOC) will be a separate office and will be based in Micronesia.

Lastly, there will be an in-country office for PIF to be also opened in Micronesia.

Whipps said that Nauru is the chair of the Micronesia Presidents Summit but recently had an election with a new President.  “He is the Chair of the Micronesian Presidents Summit and has to call the meeting. “

Fiji is also undergoing its own general election, where the current Chair Bainamenaria is running.  “Everyone’s busy with their elections,” added Whipps.

Whipps also said he had spoken with the President of Kiribati urging them to return.  “I asked him to forget what happened in the past and return because we are stronger together.” Senator Surangel Whipps Jr.

Whipps said he had contacted the other Presidents to say, “Let’s just get started.”

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