New Supreme Courthouse to be built

After 13 years, Vanuatu is to build a new Supreme Courthouse.

Vanuatu’s Prime Minister, Bob Loughman, signed an agreement this week with the Australia and New Zealand Governments to build a new Supreme Court in Port Vila.

The new courthouse will cost around VT1.2 billion.

Prime Minister Loughman says the Australian and New Zealand Governments will support the construction of the new building.

“I thank the Australia and New Zealand Governments for the good support they always give to Vanuatu,” Prime Minister Loughman said.

“I congratulate the Chief Justice, Vincent Lunabek, for the good work he has done for the Republic of Vanuatu in a temporary court building.”

Australian High Commissioner to Vanuatu, Sarah de Zoeten, says the Australian support showed the partnership that Australia and Vanuatu has established to support Vanuatu’s justice sector.

New Zealand High Commissioner to Vanuatu, Jonathan Schwass, says the court plays a very significant role in making judgements on civil, criminal and constitutional issues.

He says the law is for everyone and it is the courts that allow the law to be applied.

Commissioner Schwass also wished Vanuatu a happy 40 years Independence Anniversary.

Vanuatu’s Supreme Court is currently operating temporarily at the Town Hall building in Port Vila.

In 2007 Vanuatu’s original Supreme Court building was burned to the ground by two young men.

The original building was a historic hardwood courthouse, that was built during the colonial rule of France and Great Britain.

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