From Vanuatu first Prime Minister Walter Lini to the current one, Bob Loughman, from the first President of the Republic, Ati George Sokomanu, to the current one, Moses Obed Tallis, from the first Speaker of Parliament, Maxime Carlot, to the current one, Gracia Shaddrak, all those leaders who have contributed to the development of the nation have their name written in Vanuatu’s history.
The organizers of 40th Independence Anniversary have dedicated the victory march that took place this morning in Port Vila to mark the opening of nine days celebration to those leaders.
From Tagabe to where Vanuatu flag has been raised for the first time on 30 July 1980, around four kilometres walk mobilised thousands of people, citizens and residents, who joined together as one family to celebrate the freedom and all achievements their went through during these 40 years.
It was like a relay when the Vanuatu flag was passed on from the first Vanuatu Prime Minister, late Walter Lini (his elder brother Ham Lini acted on his behalf), followed by late Donald Kalpokas (represented by a relative), Maxime Carlot, Serge Vohor, Barak Sope, Edward Natapei (represented by his son and his wife), Ham Lini, Sato Kilman, Moana Carcasses, Joe Natuman, Charlot Salwai to Bob Loughman. Twelve Prime Ministers in twelve legislatures that made Vanuatu’s history since the date of New Hebrides’ decolonisation from France and Britain and Vanuatu’s birth.
Lini Highway was too colourful this morning with the march, the biggest one ever since 1980. All the people who arrived first with the dignitaries at where the whole celebration is taking place from today had to wait for the arrival of all parade participants one hour before the official opening of the celebration made by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Internal Affairs, Ismael Kalsakau.
Another parade that is scheduled to take place tomorrow morning is for National Children’s Day from Mooring to Independence Park.
CAPTION: DPM Ismael Kalsakau addresses the nation as he officially launched nine days celebration.