Vanuatu Government

Vanuatu government launches inquiry into labour schemes after testimony from workers in Australia

The inquiry comes in the wake of testimony from Vanuatu seasonal workers in Australia to a parliamentary hearing earlier this month, in which they alleged they had experienced bullying, exploitative working conditions, poor housing arrangements and lack of support services while under the scheme.

Australia’s Pacific labour mobility initiatives – the Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) and Pacific Labour Scheme (PLS) – support Pacific and Timorese workers to take up jobs in rural and regional Australia, particularly in the agricultural sector.

Vanuatu Government to tackle tax evasion

The Department of Customs and Inland Revenue (DCIR) met with the Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) to draft and finalise the programme of the first country’s first Tax Week Monday.

This was confirmed by both DCIR Director, Harold Tarosa and the President of VCCI, Antoine Boudier.

The joint meeting noted that there are still tax evasions.

Boudier said there are two economies in Vanuatu. There are those who pay their tax and those who do not pay taxes, such as vendors of kava and taro.

Vanuatu Government addresses flood affected areas

The two bodies have agreed to discuss ways to avoid such problems in the future after signing a memorandum of understanding.

The MOU was signed by the Minister of MIPU, Jay Ngwele and Mayor of Port Vila, Eric Puyo-Festa, yesterday.

Recent rainfall flooded some roads in Port Vila due to improper drainage. Flooding can wash out roads and damage vehicles.

Prior the MOU signing yesterday, Minister Ngwele visited a flood affected area at Anambrou.

Vanuatu Government granted access to Police Information Management System

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Internal Affairs, Ishmael Kalsakau signed the document to grant the license.

The outgoing Australian High Commissioner to Vanuatu, Sarah deZoeten was pleased to join Kalsakau, senior Vanuatu Government and Vanuatu Police Force to mark an important milestone for crime management in Vanuatu.

PIMS has been used by the Police Force since 2016 and enables them to better record incidents, manage investigations and maintain criminal history records as well as providing key data for informed decision making.

Vanuatu Government National Emergency Radio Network operational in time for high risk weather season

The emergency network connects police posts across Vanuatu’s six provinces, enabling inter-island communication during emergencies with police headquarters and the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO).

Commander Deployable Joint Force Headquarters Major General Scott Winter said the ADF is proud to partner with the VPF to support Vanuatu’s priorities.

“The devastation from Tropical Cyclone Harold in 2020 reinforced the priority of radio communications for Vanuatu,” Major General Winter said.

Vanuatu government calls for stop to green leaf scare tactics

When the leaves are left at a site it means 'Do Not Trespass, Do Not Pass.'

Most recently land claimants have placed the leaves in front of the site for new government offices on Malekula in Malampa Province.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Ishmael Kalsakau, who is leading a project to de-centralise government services, said Malampa could lose out to another province.

He told the Daily Post the government wants to push developments forward, but locals must be prepared to receive the government, to ensure the services reach everyone.

Vanuatu receives 47,900 disposable masks and 20,000 disposable gloves

The association also provided two cartons of disposable protective clothing and two cartons of protective shields and forehead thermometer. 

The donation was made to the Ministry of Health, yesterday.

VCFA President, Mildred Sope said the donation is critical to support the government's preparedness efforts for any Coronavirus outbreak.

Conspiracy complaint filed with police against Vanuatu govt

Bob Loughman and fellow government MPs, whose parliament seats were declared vacant by the former Speaker, Gracia Shadrack, last month due to consecutive absenses on three sitting days, are also alleged to have breached the Leadership Code Act.

The complaint by opposition leader Ralph Regenvanu alleges the government sought to retrospectively change parliament minutes that confirmed the 19 MPs' absence.

The complaint refers to a government motion to "correct" the minutes to read that government MPs were in fact present on June 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

Vanuatu Govt given more time for appeal

Last month's declaration, affecting prime minister Bob Loughman and 18 members of his coalition, was challenged in the court where Justice Oliver Saksak deferred to the former speaker's ruling.

However deputy prime minister Ishmael Kalsakau said the government believes the judge misdirected himself with his interpretation of article 54 of the constitution.

Mr Kalsakau said the government argue there's only one institution that has jurisdiction to determine whether or not a member of parliament has vacated their seat and that is the Supreme Court.

Several MPs defect from embattled Vanuatu government

The house sat following a Supreme Court ruling which confirmed a declaration of vacancies in most of the government member's seats in parliament.

Friday's ruling upheld a decision by the former Speaker of Parliament to expel 19 MPs including Prime Minister Bob Loughman from parliament.

A stay order on the court ruling has been granted while the government appeals, pending the outcome of which the MPs remain as MPs.

This morning when the 52-seat parliament convened, four government MPs joined the opposition, including the former Speaker, Gracia Shadrack.