MSG Chairman Conducts First Official Visit To Secretariat

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Tutugoro expected to visit capitals of other MSG member nations

By Jonas Cullwick

PORT VILA, Vanuatu (Vanuatu Daily Post, August 28, 2013) – The Chair of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG), Victor Tutugoro, who recently assumed the MSG chair on behalf of the FLNKS (Front de Liberation National Kanak et Socialiste) of New Caledonia, made his first official visit to the MSG Secretariat headquarters in Port Vila, Vanuatu, Monday morning.

Tutugoro was accompanied traditional chief representatives of Tanna Island and led by a custom dance troupe of men, women and children from Tanna to the MSG Secretariat at Independence Garden where he was welcomed by the Director General of MSG, Peter Forau, Directors and staff of the Secretariat. Also present at the occasion were members of the Diplomatic Corp led by the Dean of the Diplomatic Corp, the High Commissioner of New Zealand to Vanuatu, Bill Dobbie.

The MSG Chair is in Port Vila this week as part of a program of visits that will later take him to the capital of the other MSG countries – Papua New Guinea, Fiji and Solomon Islands. He began his official visit with courtesy calls on the Head of State of the Republic of Vanuatu, Iolu Abil, Speaker of Parliament Philip Boedoro, Prime Minister Moana Carcasses and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Edward Natapei in his new capacity as the new Chair of the MSG.

Tutugoro who is also the FLNKS spokesman is expected to address a special session of the Vanuatu Parliament on Friday. He assumed the Chair of the MSG during the 19th MSG Leaders’ Summit held in Kanaky-New Caledonia in June 2013 according to established rotation of chairmanship among members which occurs every two years.

As part of his official visit to the Secretariat, the MSG Chair will also officially open a new MSG Library on Friday this week before returning to Kanaky- New Caledonia over the weekend.

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