Colonia, Yap, September 9, 2023 (FSMIS) – President Simina has concluded his nationwide series of first official state visits in the state of Yap, where he and a delegation of cabinet and congress members have held leadership dialogues with state counterparts and several community engagements throughout the week. Similar to the previous state visits in the other states, the delegation consisted of the presiding officers and senior members of congress, all cabinet members and key technical staff from the national government.
In collaboration with state partners, the state visit began with President Simina and his delegation taking part in an island tour of Yap, visiting the municipalities and villages of Maap, Rull and Gagil where they visited the Mangyol Stone Money bank, a prominent World Heritage Site, with the guidance of the Yap Visitors Bureau. Along the tour, the next stop was at the FSM Fisheries and Maritime Institute (FMI), which featured a welcome parade, campus tour and color guard presentation conducted by the FMI cadets. Following the island tour and visit to the FMI campus, President Simina held a dinner meeting with the Council Pilung – one of the two traditional leadership bodies comprised within the Yap State government that perform functions concerning tradition and custom.
On the second day of the state visit, President Simina and the delegation met with the Yap state leadership at the legislature's chambers, where they were received by T.H. Governor Charles Chieng, T.H. Lt. Governor Francis Itimai and T.H. Speaker Nicholas Figirlaarwon. In his opening remarks, Governor Chieng welcomed President Simina and the delegation to their “home away from home” and expressed his “full faith in working together, in search of potential solutions to better the lives of all FSM citizens”.
With the room at full capacity, the leadership discussed priority issues for Yap state and raised their concerns to the national government representatives. In his remarks President Simina assured that the core value behind the Simina-Palik administration is unity, as reflected through paying these state visits early on in the administration. President Simina emphasized to the Yap state leadership that “Your priorities, are our priorities. Your concerns, are our concerns. And your hopes, are our hopes.”
During the remainder of the state visit President Simina and his delegation conducted several site visits and met with several stakeholder groups and state leaders, including with the Yap delegation of FSM Congress, the Council of Tamol, and site visits to Tamil Elementary School, Yap International Airport, the Yap Fiber Optic Cable Landing Station, Yap Catholic High School, Yap Women’s Association and the municipality of Weloy at the Wonyeb-Dugor village traditional men’s house, where the President was welcomed by Chief James Manguon and gifted with the traditional stone money, as well as the traditional “yar”, or shell money, which has been fixtured into the wall of the traditional men’s house, to stand in remembrance of the significant occasion, for both the government and traditional leadership.
While in the State of Yap, President Simina made a number of pledges to support the state and people of Yap, including: $20 million to the Yap state government; $10,000 to Tamil Elementary School; $5,000 to the Yap Women’s Association; $10,000 to Yap Catholic High School; $10,000 to the Arngel community; as well as a gift of provisions and supplies to the FMI campus.