South Santo One Area Council opens new council office

The opening of a new council office in the Tasmalum community in South Santo Area One will make it easier for local people to access government services.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Internal Affairs, Alatoi Ishmael Kalsakau, opened the new building and thanked the community’s chiefs for providing the land for it.

The building of local council offices, are part of a national Government push to decentralise the delivery of services.

The Minister said the new building was an important development and that it was good to see the people of South Santo Area One taking “ownership of real and meaningful decentralisation”.

“There will be more government services provided from this council house in the future like agriculture and trade services,” he said.

The provincial president, Malmal Langi Tavue, has said the National Bank of Vanuatu will also provide services from the new building and Pacific Petroleum will set up a fuel station there.

Minister Kalsakau said the opening of the new council house showed what could be achieved when government and the people worked together.

“The government will not come to you if you are not willing to participate with the government,” he said.

“But if you make land available, the government will come quickly and help you to develop your land.”

The South Santo Area One council office was built in three months which Mr Kalsakau said had set a “good example to local authorities and area councils” around Vanuatu.

At the opening, the Minister said Vanuatu was building a peaceful society, noting the namele or palm leaves on the national flag represented peace and an absence of conflict.

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