PRIME Minister Manasseh Sogavare has arrived in Noumea, New Caledonia, to meet with leader of the Front de Liberation Nationale Kanak et Socialiste (FLNKS).
He is travelling there as chair of the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG).
The FLNKS meeting is part of his 13-day round of meetings with leaders of the MSG.
The FLNKS is a group of pro-independent parties in the French Territory representing the indigenous population. It is a member of the MSG despite not being a sovereign government.
Prime Minister Sogavare’s meeting with the FLNKS leaders was held yesterday afternoon.
He and his seven-member delegation will remain in Noumea until Monday 22 February when they will travel on to Fiji.
The first stop of the tour was the Vanuatu Capital- Port Vila, where Prime Minister Sogavare visited the MSG Secretariat to discuss the way forward from its poor financial straits and also met with his counterpart, Prime Minister Charlot Salwai.
Prime Minister Sogavare in his meeting with Mr Salwai sought the Vanuatu government’s commitment to its financial obligations to the MSG Secretariat to ensure it lives up to the mandate entrusted on it by MSG Leaders.
Meanwhile, speaking at a function he hosted for the government of Vanuatu at the Le Lagon Resort on Thursday night, Prime Minister Sogavare described his visit to Port Vila as ‘a success.’
He said it was a success because the Vanuatu Government also believes on the prosperity of all Melanesians and on that note acknowledged the vt34 Million cheque it handed to him for the payment of its dues with the MSG Secretariat and voluntary contributions to the organization.
“We can step on this success to make MSG relevant for all Melanesians in the 21st Century,” Prime Minister Sogavare added.
He also assured the Vanuatu Government that during his tenure as Chair of the MSG, he will continue to ensure that work towards achieving the MSG leaders’ aspirations for Melanesians will progress in a proactive way.
Prime Minister Sogavare said Melanesia has the resources and capacity to turn the MSG into an effective regional economic integration framework that resembles the European Union model in the Pacific region, if Melanesian countries work together to achieve their economic aspirations.